A Reminder: Rejuvenating Your Drive Towards Your Goals

Sunday sunrise in the Northwest Indiana region of the Midwest.

We've all hit that point. Where the work feels like an overwhelming burden. You feel like you are heading nowhere. That you are stuck in place surrounded by negativity and there is no way out. You might even wrongfully lash out against those who support your efforts and end up turning a few away while more negative individuals continue to suck any joy from your life. You feel trapped inside a cage and have no way out of your situation that you hate with a passion. Every effort feels in vain and you wonder why you even bother to continue. What is the point? Why move forward when it feels impossible?

I have approached this point several times and so have many hopeful entrepreneurs out in the world. My own dreams feel very distant at times and it can feel very frustrating. As if you want things to happen now even though it takes time and a lot of patience and hard work to even get to where you want to be. Sometimes it can also be fear of what happens when success happens whether we consciously think about it or not. I felt I was walking around aimlessly and started to wonder what the point of it was. It didn't help getting anxiety attacks either or that I have more hurdles to face than some with Asperger's Syndrome. I was left wondering what to do about this. Taking advice from a few friends of mine, I took a small break from my usual work in order to figure things out but still feel a little scattered thinking about what to do now.

This is a problem many of us run into. We keep thinking about the now instead of planning for the future and taking those steps to open that path. We have a habit to always think short-term rewards instead of what we could gain by setting up the support in order to build that bridge across to land of opportunities. When things go wrong we always try to find some sort of simple scapegoat to blame for every one of our troubles when life is not that simple. We're all guilty of that last sentence, including myself. In the end no matter how much pressure we face, we're always the ones that make the final decision on what we do. I knew that I needed to do something to bring back the drive that I had to go into photography.

barbed wire fence bordering a farm field with sunrise backdrop.

So then what did I decide to get out of my lull and feel inspired again? I decided to take the same path I did years ago when I first got my camera: take photos of the sunrise. I ended up asking Siri on my iPhone on when the sunrise would be the next day and set the alarm for an hour earlier. That ended up being at 5:45 in the morning. I am not typically a morning person so this was jarring to say the least to wake up, but I knew this was important to me deep down within. I had been doing a lot of meditation in order to reach down and figure out what I really wanted to do and clear out the overwhelming junk in my mind and soul. One of the things that popped out was that I wanted an adventure again. Unfortunately money came short recently to do anything grand. Then I realize that I didn't need to do anything grand. There was something I could do that can be as inspirational and that early morning I was about to do that.

It was quite chilly. Could see every breath I made as I walked out the front door and exited the neighborhood. This was something I hadn't done in what felt like ages and felt an exciting rush in me, despite my cranky mind yelling at me to go back to bed and forget about it. Funny how our minds can lean towards the negative side so easily. I merely acknowledge its existence and left it at that while continuing to walk out of the neighborhood and down the county roads. Hat and gloves eventually went on as I could feel the weight of the bag on my shoulder. It ached a little along with my stomach, as I hadn't eaten yet. I didn't mind however. I have heard that it is best to exercise first thing in the morning before eating breakfast. I considered this over a mile long walk to be just that.

The stars were disappearing from the sky as it slowly transitioned to a deep blue color. The sun didn't start appearing yet however, as the eastern part was still under cloud cover. I quickened my pace, with a small amount of fear in my mind about how I would. Yet it didn’t last, as I could feel that I would be able to make it there in time for something spectacular. I put trust in that thought as I continued an even pace towards the location I went to before. By the time I got there, I noticed from the direction of the colorful lights reflecting off the clouds that the sun would appear behind the farm house in the distance, ruining my original plan.

approaching sunrise behind an electric tower

Instead of throwing an internal fit like some might have done, I scanned the area for a new spot to occupy. It was then I noticed a spot just right of the farmhouse that gave a great view of rolling hills, which had mist still lingering in the distance that gave a beautifully serene look. Perfect! Sometimes in missed opportunities we find even greater ones that what we originally had planned, and that was certainly the case here. Moments later I was preparing the camera gear for quick switch of the lenses as I turned towards the subject of my photo shoot.

If there is one thing you need to learn about landscape photography it is this: you need lots of patience that doesn’t always pay off in the end. It depends on the kind of shot you have in mind, but sometimes even when that shot doesn’t come you can end up getting better shots that you have ever dreamed of. This was definitely the case of me. I waited a while for the sun to appear as the sky became vibrant in warm colors that covered the sky. The electric towers bordering the land almost acted as a frame or an accent to the whole piece as I started taking panoramas of the wondrous sight. Excitement was bubbling out of me as I kept pressing the shutter button when I felt it was a shot worth taking.

At first my mind kept telling me I was done. That there was not going to be anything special and I needed to turn back. Deep in my heart and soul however, I knew that this was only the beginning and decided to stay and be patient despite the cold. A couple of times I has to put on my gloves to prevent my fingers from freezing up. Will be very difficult to take photos without hands.

Then it happened. In the distance, the sun started to peek from behind the border of clouds in the distance that highlighted the misty hills and the farm field that felt nothing short of perfect. I took out my zoom lens and started taking photos left and right to make sure I got every good angle of this amazing advantage. At that moment I felt a sense of bliss I hadn’t felt in months. That lull I had was washed away by the sun’s warm rays and felt my inspiration come back.

sun peeking from behind the clouds over a misty farm field.
sun fully out to greet the misty cold farm fields of Indiana
Sunday morning sun greeting the farmlands of Indiana

It wasn’t the money that I cared about when going into this, though it is a necessity in today’s world. It was small glorious moments like this that reminded me why we continue living and going for our dreams in the first place. It was small and seemingly insignificant moments such as this that compel us to keep moving forward, even with the odds against us. Because we know that despite the struggle there is a road to journey full of delight that can be shared with those like-minded people. Instead of doing a better job at connecting with such people to help make a world a better place, I was continuing to isolated myself due to all kinds of made up reasons, one scapegoat was that my Asperger’s made it impossible.

The moment I decided on this career choice and go more entrepreneurial that I knew that was a bunch of crap. Sure it is hard but not impossible. I unfortunately had in planted in my head for quite a number of years was that I wouldn’t be more than a simple part-time worker. That I cannot truly take care of myself and should live with others. That I had to go the “safe way”. There is no reward in going the safe way. To make it big and discover who you are and what you are capable of, is to continue taking risks and push yourself out of your comfort zone. Even Temple Grandin, a spokeswoman and activist for autism, spoke of how parents need to help their autistic kids get out of their comfort zone that will help them out later in life.

I knew then and even now that I wanted more out of my life and to help others achieve that as well. It was how to do it along with other duties that have jumbled my mind into such a confused state. I had to organize things better so that I can get things done in time like they should. Unfortunately that wasn’t always possible for me due to other reasons. Just another reason to think about interns once I have everything settled and in a constant flow.

The sun eventually rose far enough above that I could put the camera down after taking a few shots of the frost covered foliage. I started traveling back home for breakfast, satisfied on the event and feeling that inspiration come right back to me. Others would consider this work, having to get up early in freezing temperatures just to get a random shot. For me this is fun, and if the job is fun then it will never feel like work. This is what my soul yearns to do. Travel, photograph glorious sights to inspire and educate others, help others that are feeling just as helpless as I was whether they have autism or not, live on my own and enjoy the wonders of nature. All it takes is one little event to help remind you of why you continue. For me, I want to live life to the fullest while I am still on this little treasure in this universe called Earth. Time to get back to work.

barbed wire fence being highlighted by the morning sun.
Frosty grass in a chilly Sunday morning.
barb wired fence in front of the sunshine lit farm field