Early in Michelangelo’s career, before the Sistine Chapel, he was commissioned to sculpt more than 40 figures for what would have been the most magnificent tomb of its time. Money for the project dried up, however, and it was pushed to the side and never completed. The result is a collection of statues that line the hall leading to Michelangelo’s masterpiece in Florence, the David. This collection of partially finished statues often referred to as Prisoners, shows figures half carved out of their blocks of marble. The images are very impactful as they appear to be fighting to emerge from the marble that holds them captive. (see image below)
We are like those statues in many ways. We are all in process. We are all becoming. Every day we strain against what we have been, working to be whatever we might become. Becoming what we hope to be isn’t an easy process. To say it another way, growth isn’t for the faint of heart. Here are a couple of thoughts as you seek to become all you were meant to be:
Don’t Listen To People Who Insist On Defining You By Your Past
Don’t forget your past, there are lessons to be learned there, but don’t listen to anyone who insists on never letting you escape your past. Your past is where you were, you get to decide where you are going next. If you constantly listen to people who feel that you will never grow to be anything new, at some point you will start believing them.
Growth Starts With Dreams But Is Enacted By Determination
Don’t stop dreaming about what you can become. Dreams are where it all starts, but dreaming isn’t enough. At some point you will have to step out and try to make those dreams come true. Becoming all you want to be isn’t easy, it takes hard work to keep from settling in to the status quo that holds you prisoner now.
If you are waiting to figure out all the steps that it’s going to take to become what you want to be, you will never get there. Sometimes you can only see the next step in front of you, sometimes not even that much. Take steps to work on whatever steps you can see, and don’t be afraid to fail. Of course you will fail along the way. Failure only kills our dreams if we refuse to get back up and try again. Failing is a sure sign that you are alive and growing. It also means you are one step closer to succeeding.
I hope you have a dream about what you can become. There is a world of potential inside of you just waiting to bust out, not to mention a world around you that needs what you have to offer. Dream big dreams and chase them all the passion and endurance you have. You will never regret it!