[Guest Post by Laura L. Smith – We happen to share the same literary agent, Amanda Luedeke with MacGregor Literary Agency. She is a fiction writer for young adults and wanted to share some encouragement with you on how to dream and do your thing!]
Last summer, while checking into our hotel in Dresden, Germany I had the treat of meeting soccer legend, Brandi Chastain.
She had her hair pulled into a ponytail was wearing a T-shirt, athletic shorts and cleats. She was kicking a pink Nike soccer ball in the hotel lobby.
Yes, in the lobby.
She is the woman known for kicking the winning penalty kick for the U.S. Women’s National team in the 1999 World Cup. She was in Dresden to be one of the lead ESPN announcers for the current World Cup, speaking to tens of thousands of television viewers for two weeks straight.
When I asked Brandi what advice she had for young people who wanted to be soccer stars, she said,
“Do it everyday. Kick it, pass it, dribble it, every day. When I was young, I kicked the ball against the side of the house for an hour every day. I got to know the ball so well, and how it would bounce off the house and where it would go if I tapped it a certain way and how to kick it back if it came to me a certain way, that when I was on the field, when I was in a game, I never had to think. I knew exactly what to do.”
The same is true for whatever it is you want to achieve in life.
For writers, like me, it means writing something every day. Stephen King says it in his book, On Writing. Anne LaMott says it in Bird by Bird.
Do it everyday.
That doesn’t have to be writing five chapters of my next novel. It could be a blog or a character sketch or a review of someone else’s work. But each day, I need to be conscious of word choice, descriptions, rhythms of words.
You want to learn how to cook? Chef up a meal every day. It could be scrambled eggs or a grilled cheese sandwich, but if you do it everyday, you’ll figure out too much salt makes your eggs taste like potato chips and how long to let your grilled cheese sizzle to get the cheese to melt to a perfect gooey consistency.
If you want to get closer to God, read a chapter of the Bible every day and contemplate it.
I promise you’ll get closer to Him.
No matter what instrument you play, your instructor will ask you to practice every day. Play your scales. Work on the hardest part of your piece. Soon your ears will know the difference between a C sharp and a B flat. Your fingers will know how to move along the keys of a piano or the frets of a guitar.
If your goal is to become a teacher, explain something to someone every day. It could be how to take care of a tortoise or how to French braid hair, or anything, but the more you practice explaining things to people, the better you’ll be at it. I promise.
So, get going.
Today, tomorrow and the day after that – do your thing.
As Dr. Seuss said, “You’re off to great places, today is your day.”
Today can be your day. You just need to get started. What can you do on a daily basis to help you achieve your dream?
Laura L. Smith loves God, her husband, her four children, writing and speaking. She writes real stories for real girls. Her previous books include Skinny, Hot, and Angry. Laura’s new series, Status Updates, release this month. She is a featured columnist at Choose Now Ministrieshttp://nicoleodell.com/laura-l-smith-on-true-beauty/ and speaks at schools, churches and campuses around the country. Smith lives in the college town of Miami University, Oxford, Ohio. She writes at www.laurasmithauthor.com.