I was in line at Arby's thinking solely about that scrumptious roast beef I was about to sink my teeth into. My taste buds had one focus. My stomach almost spoke aloud and said, 'Hey buddy, I'm ready!'
I had recently made a commitment to drink water instead of the usual soft drink. So with my #5 'meal deal' I ordered 'water'.
When I got up to the window, the young lady said, 'Sir, I'm sorry but water doesn't exist on my check register. I'm afraid you'll have to choose something else since I can't get that for you.'
I said, 'Sure you can. Just go over and get a small cup and take it over to the fountain drinks. There is a button just alongside of the Diet Coke. Its a black button. Just push that button and water will come out. Fill the cup up, put a lid on it, grab a straw and bring it to me.'
She flashed a big smile and said, 'Oh, o.k.'
A few months later, just as I had finished a speaking engagement for the incredible Dell Corporation in Austin, Texas, a senior executive approached me.
He started telling me about his dream of being a pilot. He described how as a little boy, he always wanted to fly. He talked about the planes that he wanted to fly and even own.
As I watched his excitement as he described for me his dream, I stopped him and asked him, 'Jonathan, why aren't you doing that now?'
His response was, 'Michael, I really don't know'. I asked, 'Well, can you afford it?' He said, 'Oh, absolutely'. I asked him how much time it would take him each week to take lessons and get his license. He said, 'Oh, I could do it in about 2 hours a week.' I then asked, 'Well, what day of the week would be best for you to do it.' He responded, 'I guess I could do it on Saturday afternoon.' I said, 'Well, what are you going to do this Saturday?' He said, 'I guess I'll go out to the small airport by my home and find out what all I need to do.'
I told him, 'Well, why haven't you done this before now?' He said, 'I guess I never knew that I could.' I said, 'Well, Jonathan, you now have permission to go get started.'
I find that a lot of people don't feel that its o.k. to go and get started on their dreams. They feel that they have to pay a bit more of the price of success in order to go do what they really want in their lives.
I spent 4 years writing my first book. I didn't know that I could write a book. When I had prepared my manuscript, I worked up the courage to send it to a renown NY Times best selling author that I had met a few years back. I figured that the least that would happen is that either he might never read it or, perhaps I'd never hear from him.
I decided to take a chance. I went to the local office supply, had the manuscript wire-bound and sent it off to Dr. Harold Bloomfield at his home in Maui, Hawaii.
A week later, I received an email from Dr. Bloomfield giving me glowing comments about my book. He said he was sending his copy back with some suggestions and corrections. Later, he offered to write my introduction. A NY Times best selling author wanted his name alongside of mine on 'my book'. Wow! It blew me away.
Three months later, I had completed not just one book, but three books. Four years to complete the first one. Three months to complete the next two.
I gave myself permission to succeed. I gave myself permission to find out if I truly had the talent to write and express myself on paper. When Dr. Bloomfield validated my abilities by what he did, he gave me permission to go ahead and complete two other books that I had longed to complete.
Whatever your dream is, I want to grant you the permission today to 'go get started'. Its o.k. for you to be successful. Its o.k. for you to express your gift to the world. Its o.k. for you to live your life and enjoy success.
In fact, you deserve to succeed. You deserve to live your dream, to feel wonderful about your life. You deserve to be recognized for what your abilities are able to produce.
Not only that, you owe it to me, yourself and others to give us the opportunity to benefit from your gifts, talents and ideas.
If you've been waiting to do what you've always dreamed of and imagined yourself doing, today is your day. Go get started now! Believe in your dreams! And finally, go and live your dreams! You now have permission!