Posts tagged #dreams

Be Extraordinary!

I’m thinking of doing this…

I’m planning to do that…

Tomorrow, I will…

Next month, I might…

Ordinary people think about taking action and claiming brighter futures but go no further; extraordinary people go the extra mile and actually act upon those thoughts. Which type of person are you?

Do you have things you want to accomplish in your life? Do you have aspirations you know will take time and energy to see fulfilled? Do you have dreams you long to see come true? None of these things will happen on their own.

A new month is upon us. The average person will waste the hours and minutes they will be given. They’ll be content being ordinary. However, you were not destined to be average or ordinary. You were created to be extraordinary.

If you have desires that still remain unrealized, you cannot allow fear, doubt, or laziness to steal even one more second from you. Instead, set your goals, determine the steps you will need to take in order to reach them, and get to work.

Time is the only thing of value that we really own.
Treat it like the gift that it is.

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Don't Stop Believing

The following is an excerpt from a reflection I wrote on back in January of 2010. Almost five years have passed and for me, what I wrote then, is a reminder to keep believing. Regardless of time passed and difficult circumstances you may be facing, we must always believe that we can live out our dreams.

Someone once wrote, “In order to achieve you must believe,” which leads me to conclude that success begins in you. That statement makes it seem easy. I wake up one morning, look at myself in the mirror and say I’m going to be a wealthy man! Yet, is it really that easy?

It can be. If you truly put your mind to do something AND work at it, then you can become wealthy or whatever else you put in your mind to become. Yet, the reality is that most people either: a.) Can’t fathom believing that they can achieve or prosper or b.) Want to achieve or prosper, but are lazy and don’t want to work for it.

Don't stop believing!

Yes, there is a blessing for you.  You may have to fight to get it. You may have to work countless hours to attain it, but regardless of what you think, your “it” is out there.

One of the greatest men in the Bible is David. David is considered by many theologians to be the greatest king Israel ever had. Before David became king, he was taking care of sheep, which wasn’t a prestigious job, but he was faithful at it. In fact, David once killed a lion that was trying to harm his sheep. I would have let the lion enjoy the sheep. Who am I to deny the king of the jungle his delicacy of eating lamb? That was not David. He took his work seriously, but even with his work ethic, David was overlooked.

When the prophet Samuel was looking for a new king for Israel he went to the house of Jesse. Jesse showcased to Samuel seven of his sons, and deliberately overlooked David because he was young and thought he was not fit to be a king. Yet, David was the one Samuel was looking for.

When a giant named Goliath taunted the Israelites for forty consecutive days, David was the one who was brave enough to challenge Goliath. However, people doubted that David could take care of the giant. Goliath laughed at him, and King Saul tried to give David his armor because he didn’t think David could defeat the giant. Yet, David didn’t need the king’s armor. David slew the giant with a sling and a rock.

After slaying Goliath, David became well known, but with fame and recognition, came jealousy and betrayal. King Saul now wanted him killed. The people who followed David betrayed him and wanted him stoned because things didn’t go the way they had planned. David was not deterred though. With no one by his side, David, “encouraged himself in the Lord.”

Perhaps, you have been overlooked and that has caused you to stop believing in what you want to accomplish. Maybe people have viewed you and your dreams with doubt and that has destroyed your desire to further pursue your dreams. It could be that those whom you trusted upon have betrayed you and their betrayal has left you heartbroken. Being overlooked, doubted upon, and betrayed can kill you and your dream, but it doesn’t have to. You must do what David did. You must encourage yourself.

Understand, sometimes you have to be your greatest supporter and biggest cheerleader. You have to be the one that tells yourself, “My dream is going to happen. My vision will be fulfilled.  Nothing will stop me!”

What will you say to yourself today to provide you encouragement?

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A.C. Cristales is a motivational youth speaker, leadership consultant, and author.  He has been working with students, educators, parents and youth workers for more than 15 years. 

Posted on November 11, 2014 and filed under Blogs.

The Journey of Success, Part I

More than three hundred and fifty brochures mailed out, yet I only received one response that did not materialize into anything tangible.

Promises were made from several people in the industry to provide me guidance and direction, yet instead all they did was take my money and left me hanging out to dry.

Countless e-mails and phone calls not returned.

Book sales not what I want them to be.

Yet, still I stand.

I stand with my head up high, even though, some days I have to force myself to keep it up. 

I stand, even through the disappointment, rejection, and the reality that my plan is not working out the way I thought it would have.

I figured eight months in and promoting myself strong, that doors would have opened. I strongly guessed that by now after speaking to over a thousand students in more than forty classes and a youth leadership conference that my audience would have grown. However, it hasn’t. Not the way I planned it would have.

That’s the thing about the journey of success: it is not always what you see. People say there are secrets of success and I, at one time, believed that to be true. However, months after walking away from a noble profession (education) that I spent thirteen years in, I no longer believe that to be true.

I don’t think there are secrets of success. I believe that there are seeds of success because what really are the secrets anyway?

Work hard. Be patient.  Don’t quit. Be consistent. Stay committed…just to name a few.

These are not secrets. Many men and women have succeeded for generations and generations because they have followed these rules. But again, these are not secrets. These are seeds. These are things that you and I do with the expectation that with nurturing and time, they will help us, and our business grow into something great.

The seed of working hard may bring forth results for somebody in three months. For you, it may take three years.

The seed of being patient may only require your peer to wait a year. For you, it may require a decade.

The seed of “don’t quit” may bring forth light afflictions to somebody else. For you, it may mean desolate valleys and painful falls.

The seed of staying consistent and committed to a dream may mean it takes your colleague doing something for a couple of months before they make it big. For you, it may mean doing something consistently and staying committed to it for years before you see any fruit.

All seeds do not grow at the same rate. Therefore, everybody’s journey of success will not be the same. Many people quit their journey of success because they don’t see their seeds producing what they envisioned them to produce. Frankly, I know the feeling. However, I am still pulled. Pulled by the greatness inside of me. Drawn by my desire to share my message of hope to a world that is hurting. Lured by my calling to empower people to go out there and fulfill their dreams no matter the cost.

Yes, there is a cost. There are no secrets. There is no magic formula. All there are are seeds that you must tend to. Maybe, this is the lesson I had to learn; that everyone’s journey of success is different, and that I mustn’t waste time comparing mine to anyone else’s. The only obligation I have is to take care of what’s mine and to keep climbing my way up to reach my mountaintop.


What's journey of success look like?

Purchase A.C.'s new book, The School of Hard Knocks.

Posted on September 16, 2014 and filed under Blogs.