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Reach For Stars

Updated on January 21, 2013

REFLECTIONS

“The greatest achievement was at first and for a time a dream. The oak sleeps in the acorn; the bird waits in the egg; and in the highest vision of the soul a waking angel stirs. Dreams are the seedlings of realities.”
~ James Allen

I am saddened when I look at society today. Of course, part of the sadness comes from the crime, the homelessness and the overall injustice that I witness, but a great amount of my sadness comes from witnessing so many people who seemingly have given up.

It is not in my DNA to do so, but then maybe I haven’t suffered as much as others. For those of you who know my story, you probably think I have had my share of tough times, and you would be right. If that is true, then why haven’t I given up while so many others have?

You see them in all walks of life. They have the vacant stare, the lifeless eyes, and the smile that lacks happiness. They are going through the motions, and each day appears to be a replica of the last, and the last was certainly no picnic.

I am not talking about the homeless or the crippled, the abused or the mentally ill. I am talking about those who seemingly have a life, who go to work each day, come home to family, or by themselves, and yet find no joy in life. What has happened to them? What happened to those dreams they had when they were children? What happened to their inquisitiveness and the thrill they once had when they faced each new day and its unlimited possibilities?

What happened?

Reach for the stars
Reach for the stars | Source

FROM TEACHING CAME SOME INSIGHTS

I have witnessed an interesting shift in society over the past thirty years. Where once I had students who had dreams and then went off in pursuit of those dreams, now I see students who, by the time they hit high school, have lost sight of their dreams, and do not believe it possible to achieve whatever dreams they might have.

How has that happened? Of course I’m not talking about all kids, but I can say with all certainty that the numbers have increased dramatically in the past thirty years, so much so that it is not only kids now, but adults as well, who have no memory of once dreaming and believing in those dreams.

I am trying to imagine a life without dreams. I am sixty-four and I still have dreams for the future, and I am working towards those dreams as we speak. What is it that stops so many? What complicated thoughts and emotions are churning inside of them, preventing them from reaching for the stars

A PROCESS I HAVE OBSERVED

In the brilliant book “The Alchemist,” Paulo Coelho speaks of four obstacles that prevent many from reaching their dreams.

· The first is that we are told from childhood that everything we want to do is impossible.

· The second is love. We know what we want, but we are afraid of hurting those around us by abandoning everything to chase our dream.

· The third is a fear of the failures or defeats we will face along the journey.

· The fourth is the fear of realizing the dreams which we have chased after.

It is interesting that three of the four obstacles mentioned by Coelho are associated with fear; interesting but all too easy to understand.

My father was the bravest man I have ever known, but I suspect he was afraid of chasing a dream. He worked the same job, a manual labor job in a sand & gravel pit, for twenty years, and hated most of those twenty years on the job. However, I am quite certain that leaving that job and chasing some dream was the last thing on his mind.

I am sure he felt a responsibility to his family to just tough it out, despite his feelings. I am sure he was afraid that he would fail if he tried something different, and I am certain that he was afraid of what would happen if he did succeed and find a job that was more meaningful and rewarding. I have no doubt of it at all.

On the other hand, and I mention this only as an example in trying to understand, I have never known fear in these types of decisions. I will leave a job in a heartbeat if it does not bring me joy, and I have no problem starting a new undertaking, like writing, when I am in my Sixties. Now why is that? How could I be raised by a nurturing and yet frightened man, and turn out completely different? Since I am adopted any discussion about DNA is moot, and obviously the nurture argument is not valid in my case.

I have taught several kids from the same family, and I am still amazed that one sibling will be a dream chaser and the other will be afraid to try anything new. Why is that?

A song to live by

I UNDERSTAND AND YET I DO NOT

I know this with every ounce of my being: life is too short not to chase after your dreams, and that’s why it saddens me to see so many people who will not do so.

I am reminded of that fabulous song by Tim McGaw….”Live Like You Were Dying.” Let’s face it, we all are! We are all dying, and not a one of us knows if this will be our last day on this planet, so why aren’t we living like it? Why aren’t we grabbing hold of the lightning bolt, and why aren’t’ we laughing at the face of challenge? Why do we shrivel with the fear of failure or better yet, why do we shrivel with the fear of success?

Why do we allow others to convince us that we cannot achieve or better yet, why do we convince ourselves of it?

Do not tell me that you cannot do it. I will overwhelm you with an endless array of stories about average people who refused to give up on their dreams.

Do not tell me you are not good enough, or that you are too old, or that you are not smart enough. I will tell you that excuses are like assholes and they serve the same purpose.

Do not tell me that life is not fair and you just can’t catch a break. I will tell you that life is as fair as you make it, and bad luck is an excuse used by those looking for the exit sign.

Do you know how to reach for the stars? Do you remember, so very long ago, when you believed that you could do anything?

It begins today….right here….right now! Listen carefully and follow my instructions….are you ready?

Hold up your arm over your head. Open your hand and extend your fingers. Now reach!

2013 William Holland (aka billybuc)

Sit with me awhile

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    • Janine Huldie profile image

      Janine Huldie 4 years ago from New York, New York

      This was truly awe inspiring and just awesome. I am with you on trying to reach as high you possibly can to reach for the stars. I am trying my best also to instill this in my kids as we speak. This is just so very important for them to learn especially in this day and age, because you are right now enough of this way of thinking exists. Thanks for reminding all what is important in life and have of course voted way up and shared, too!!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Janine! Your kids have great teachers. Now let's hope the lessons learned stay with them.

      Have a wonderful week my friend.

    • justateacher profile image

      LaDena Campbell 4 years ago from Somewhere Over The Rainbow - Near Oz...

      It is sad that I have seen too many people not just give up on a dream, but have no dream in the first place...I ask my first graders what they want to be when they grow up...when I first started teaching years ago,I would get answers like "be a football player" or "be a policeman" or "be a dancer"...now I get answers like "I don't know" or "I'll find out when I'm grown up." It's just sad that for whatever reason children no longer dream about their future...

      Great hub! Makes you think! Voted up and shared!

    • midget38 profile image

      Michelle Liew 4 years ago from Singapore

      May we all have the courage to chase our dreams and live life to the fullest before it is too late. Happy Martin Luther King Jr. Day!

    • shiningirisheyes profile image

      Shining Irish Eyes 4 years ago from Upstate, New York

      Billy - It a a hub such as this one that continues to build my admiration for the person you are. I wouldn't dare tell you "I can't", after knowing the road you have traveled to get where you are today.

      I look at it this way and use my Dad's cancer as an example: I did not want this to happen, would do anything to take this away but if this is the road we are walking on, I will do everything in my power to be the absolute best at providing him and my family the best care. I will make sure I perform this period of my life and theirs to my utmost best.

      It may not be the same as reaching for your dreams but if you instill this theory on every aspect of your life, whether good or sad, you can look back and know you did your best. Applying this to other areas of your life will certainly aid in making the smallest and largest of dreams happen.

      Many many blessings to you

      Beckie XO

    • bizarrett81 profile image

      bizarrett81 4 years ago from Maine

      William I think you are going to be my "how to live" guru! Your messages, especially this one, are so great right now. Life is particularly hard right now, and unfortunately when you are young, you have to have all that crap (money, vehicles, etc) to get you to a place where you can just be happy being in the moment... I want to provide an amazing life for my son but I live int he second most expensive state in the US. I can't even put him in daycare for less then 170 a week so that i can go to work. it can get very depressing, but I try very hard to keep my chin up and "live long and prosper" = ) That is why I am here. Writing was always my childhood dream. I am trying to find that again. Please don't ever stop being inspiring!

    • Patriot Quest profile image

      Wayne Joel Bushong 4 years ago from America

      Interesting read, .........funny, I was told that everything in life I wanted to do WAS possible, I was taught to compete and not everyone gets a trophy, I was taught to strive and overcome instead of not to worry because society will take care of you..........And last I was told my God has a 1000 cattle on a 1000 hills.........that is where undieing hope comes from...

    • PoeticVine profile image

      Leanna Stead 4 years ago from North Carolina, United States

      Bill, thank you sharing this Hub. It is a bittersweet truth: many of us are afraid of fear and success in equal measure. How, then, does one venture forward to pursue a dream when "paralyzed" by fear on all sides?

      I enclose the above not because the paralysis is invalid. It is a very real and affecting thing that *we* produce. For whatever reasons -- and there are a great many people who struggle daily far more than I do currently -- many wrap themselves in a little cocoon of fear, or doubt, or self-deprecation, or something, and absolutely refuse to move.

      The thing about a cocoon -- in order to reach your fullest potential, you have to escape its confines. I'm beginning my escape now by finally writing here. This is a wonderful and timely validation.

    • JimTxMiller profile image

      Jim Miller 4 years ago from Wichita Falls, Texas

      "Ah, but a man's reach should exceed his grasp -- or what's a heaven for?" ~ Robert Browning

    • Rolly A Chabot profile image

      Rolly A Chabot 4 years ago from Alberta Canada

      Hi Billy... this has been an interesting read in many ways. I think you hit it fairly well at the beginning when you spoke of our generation. I think our parents were so busy attempting to catch up after the depression and the war that dreams were something they lost sight of. Maybe it was because of it. They told us we were dreaming for things which were out of our grasp. I think back of all the years in school and feeling defeated in so many ways. It was not until I got out into the real world did I start to dream again.

      It is the "What If's" that drove me. It was then I started to learn. Life since has been filled with seeking more knowledge and it never should stop. If you have a dream, then just go after it. I think the limits people place on themselves exist only in their own minds.

      The youth of today have lost so much hope. I mean look at what we have done to the world, the environment and the economy. I think the new focus they need to have is "What can I do to change this" The opportunities today are endless if you are willing to put your mind and skills to work. Take away this feeling of entitlement and just run with the dream.

      Hugs from Canada

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 4 years ago from Central Florida

      Bill, I think a lot of people would rather go thru life on automatic pilot than try something new and challenging. Many people are of the 'woe is me' mindset and would rather bitch and blame than be the person they dream of being and living a life of satisfaction and happiness.

      I honestly think 'The Little Engine That Could' should be required reading worldwide every 5 years or so!

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image

      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

      That is beautiful. You are an incredibly inspiring person! Two of my resolutions for the year are to 1)savor the moments of my life and 2)Be thankful, and I think reading your posts will help me with those goals.

    • PoeticVine profile image

      Leanna Stead 4 years ago from North Carolina, United States

      bravewarrior: YES! :)

    • RealHousewife profile image

      Kelly Umphenour 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      Interesting...and it does sadden me when I see people who apparently have no joy in life...sometimes I think people forget how powerful they are. We all have the power to change things we don't like...I choose to do that when things don't go my way:)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      LaDena, thank you for that comment. I thought at first it was my imagination....kids don't have dreams any longer. How did that happen? Why did it happen? Whatever the reason, it bothers me greatly.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Michelle, the perfect day for this message....I Have A Dream! One of the greatest speeches I will ever hear.

      Thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Beckie, I agree completely! We don't always get to choose the path we are walking on, but that doesn't mean we can't make it the best experience possible. My God, Beckie, what happened to the dreamers of the world?????

      love,

      billy

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      bizarrett, thank you, and I am sorry that things are so hard....in Maine? is that where you are? I could always ask the obvious question....why not move? But I'm sure you have a reason, and a good one.

      I am glad if my words help you. Bravo to you for being a single parent and loving your son so much. I was a single parent for fourteen years and it ain't easy at all.....not at all.

      If I can be of any help with your writing, feel free to drop me a line.

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Patriot, I was told the same things....well, not about cattle....:) but sadly that message is not as common today.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Poetic....baby steps! Yes, you are escaping your cocoon by writing here....and that is a huge baby step. :)

      I don't know why so many people are wrapped in the cocoon of fear, but I know the numbers are far greater than they once were...and it is sad. :)

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jim, I agree completely! There should be no limit to our dreams.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sha, I would love to grab them all and look in their eyes and explain to them how precious life is, and how every single moment should be savored and used for maximum benefit....but I can't. :)

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Well Kathryn, that is a very sweet thing to say....thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Poetic....Sha (bravewarrior) is a fighter. Get to know her!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Kelly, exactly, and although you and I are similar in that way, I recognize that many are not like that...I wish I knew how to change them, and teach them to face their fears.

    • shiningirisheyes profile image

      Shining Irish Eyes 4 years ago from Upstate, New York

      They are still here, sitting in Upstate New York and Olympia, Washington while reading and commenting on some awesome hubs.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 4 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Thanks Billy,

      I taught a lesson on each of us having miracles within us yesterday. It coincided with the scripture of Christ turning water into wine. But it focused on His mother prodding him to act. You in fact create miracles by prodding others to do great things. Reach for the Stars and they shall light your way!!!

    • Curiad profile image

      Mark G Weller 4 years ago from Lake Charles, LA.

      Another great message, and shared with clear wise words. It is interesting how we can fear success isn't it?

      Mark

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Rolly, so very nicely stated. Thank you for that perspective. I'll tell you what, buddy: I only stopped dreaming when I was in such a deep fog from alcoholism that I could not think properly. If I am sober I am constantly dreaming; I can't imagine life without dreams, and now I can't imagine life without seeking knowledge.

      Thanks my friend; blessings and hugs coming your way from Olympia.

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Beckie, they are indeed! :)

      love to you

      billy

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Eric, I hope I do create miracles. I think we all have that in us; I know you do. Let's keep lighting the way and making it easier for others to follow. :) Thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Mark, it really is. I find it to be one of the great mysteries....it seems that we could never fear succeeding, but so many do. :)

      Thank you buddy; I hope you are well. The road still leads to Olympia; you will be welcomed with open arms.

    • bizarrett81 profile image

      bizarrett81 4 years ago from Maine

      I live in Maine, yes, but I'm not a single parent. His father and I are together, and he has a daughter from his first marraige, which is why we can't move really. Plus, I really love Maine... I've tried to move a few times, but... something about this place keeps pulling me back...

    • carol7777 profile image

      carol stanley 4 years ago from Arizona

      I think the most lucky people in the world who find joy for small things. Also we have to remind ourselves how good life is. I always remark to my husband even after a bike ride...how much fun it was and getting out in the fresh air. I know how the past generations felt about providing for their families and many had jobs they hated...There was not an aura of entitlement and thinking about going after lofty dreams. I enjoy my life because I have so many interests and love improving skills...And believe me my life is far from perfect with much family sadness. You hit the nails (plural) on the heads. Thanks again for a thought provoking and most enlightening write...Up and share.

    • onegreenparachute profile image

      Carol 4 years ago from Greenwood, B.C., Canada

      The Nisga'a name I was given is Hax Waa Ksakw - Never Gives Up. And yet, in some things, I cannot seem to reach for stars. I was told as I was growing up that what I had was "sufficient" and that, in most things, "sufficient" was enough. Perhaps, as Rolly said, it was because of the depression that my parent could not dream and that this was passed down to me. Wonderful hub Bill. Thanks!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sorry about that, bizarrett....I would love Maine as well. Some parts of the country are tough to live in right now. Then there are states like North Dakota where they can't find enough people for all the jobs they have; of course, nobody in their right mind would want to live in North Dakota. LOL

    • grandmapearl profile image

      Connie Smith 4 years ago from Southern Tier New York State

      I have to tell you, Billy, that I think that the recent generation has become lazy. They have all their electronic toys and gadgets, their big screen tvs and such, but no desire to reach beyond the mundane idea of accumulating possessions. I say, get outside, breathe the fresh air and ditch the cell phone and ipod. Listen to the music of nature and be inspired to reach further than the television or game console remote!

      Voted Up across the board. Awesome, my friend.

      Pearl

    • bizarrett81 profile image

      bizarrett81 4 years ago from Maine

      LOL right? Sometimes I feel like I live in Fargo, though, when I'm buried under a foot of snow (and getting 6 more inches tonight!) There is a lack of jobs here, also, but it also seems like everyone is pursuing the same thing around here. I am hoping the degree I am seeking and my skills will make me stand out and valuable.

    • bizarrett81 profile image

      bizarrett81 4 years ago from Maine

      Grandmapearl I hear ya, as one of the awkward generation that is torn between knowing a day without all the gadgets and wanting all the gadgets. I grew up very religous and without a TV until I was about seven, so my love for books I think gave me an edge. I still have my flat screens and my video games, but I also value sitting and gazing at the stars, or reading a book to my son. I can only hope he learns to love the simple things as I do

    • donnah75 profile image

      Donna Hilbrandt 4 years ago from Upstate New York

      Amen, Bill! I remember when I left high school, I set what I thought were a few lofty goals for myself. I had reached them all by 25 and found myself in a bit of a slump. The cure? More goals and dreams. To have something to work toward and look foward to is a great motivator in life.

    • btrbell profile image

      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      So so many sad and vacant people. I had the opportunity to attend a wordpress conference this weekend and, boy, I can't begin to tell you how exciting it was to be with people who are all fired up. If only we could invent an injection for that, just like a vaccine! Thank you for sharing!

    • sherrituck profile image

      Sherri Tuck 4 years ago from Virginia

      Words of sheer beauty and truth...This Hub begs to know why society squelches the desire to dream. For example, in my corner of the world people feel that one's goal in life is to work (any job) and be happy that you have work. You never question authority or desire to think outside of the box. The end result? The presence of lots and lots of vacant shells. This is not the way the human race was intended to live.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Carol, thank you as always for stopping by. It is interesting how we have changed from the earlier generations. My parents did not dream; for them it was all about providing, doing your job, and that's how it was until they died. Sorry, but I've got loftier goals in addition to those that they had. :)

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      onegreen, thanks for sharing that. I love your Nisga name....maybe some day you will discover whatever it is you need to reach constantly for those stars. :) I hope so.

      Thank you once again for the visit and great comment.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Pearl, it has been my concern for a couple decades now, that technology has made society lazy. I am in complete agreement with you. Ditch the toys and get in touch with what is important in life.

      Thanks my wise friend!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Elizabeth, I hope that happens for you; this is such a tough economy, and we all have to keep changing to find that niche that works for us. I wish you good luck as you find yours.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Elizabeth....the awkward generation....I have never heard that phrase, but I love it. At least you can find the joy in reading and playing with your son. Sounds to me like you were born in the wrong generation; you have your act together in my opinion.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Donnah; that's the theme of my hub tomorrow....we need goals....it is stamped on our DNA...and without them we have no direction in life.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Randi, I love it! An injection of excitement! That would be an instant success for the drug companies now wouldn't it? LOL Thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sherri, I sure hope that's not why we were created, or I've been wrong my entire life. :) How empty is that, to have no other goal than to work and be happy that you have work? There has to be something more, right?

      Thank you Sherri!

    • Sparklea profile image

      Sparklea 4 years ago from Upstate New York

      Hi Billybuc! LOVE the quote at the beginning of this outstanding hub.

      You inspire, even without this hub, because, throughout, I see your energy and enthusiasm about the art of living...it seems to resonate no matter if you are writing about inspiration, or even Ted Bundy. I say this, because, whether you write about positive or negative, I sense the enormous amount of research that has been involved with many of your hubs.

      All the above testifies to your drive to do what you love to do: WRITE.

      By the way, I DO want to read your hub about your forthcoming book, and comment on it, I just need a block of time to do it. I WILL get back to you on that.

      One thing that bothers me about this generation is the obsession I see with kid/teens/young adults totally obsessed with all the technology...especially cell phones and texting.

      When you and I were kids, life was so much simpler then.

      The television and video games seem to take up many hours where nothing is really accomplished. I just wonder if that gets in the way of dreams?

      Of course, when I was a teen/young adult, I thought I had all the time in the world to accomplish stuff 'in the future.' However, it seems that, in a blink, here I am today.

      All this being said, you are the greatest example of a person who is reaching for the stars. A star in our galaxy should be named after you!

      This hub is a shot in the arm to anyone who reads it. You get the adrenaline going!

      Blessings, Sparklea :)

    • bizarrett81 profile image

      bizarrett81 4 years ago from Maine

      Thank Bill. I am hoping to find my niche! I am so glad I found Hubpages, it seems like perfect place for someone like me with so much in my head to let it all out. And everyone here is so positive and uplifting!! It's a breathe of fresh air. And thank you for the compliments, coming from a creative writing teacher, it is a definite ego booster!!

    • picklesandrufus profile image

      picklesandrufus 4 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va

      You share a hub of hope over defeat. I hope it helps those who read it, Billybuc! Life has it's share of pitfalls, but finding the strength to get up each time, ultimately makes us stronger and better people, I believe. Nice work

    • Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

      Gypsy Rose Lee 4 years ago from Riga, Latvia

      Voted up and interesting and also inspiring. I'm another dream chaser Bill and I know I'll never stop. Passing this on.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Lea, again, thank you so much! I am a firm believer that technology has made our society lazy. The old work ethic of the past is gone. The genuine appreciation for nature and life is gone. Now it's "reality tv" and the latest gangster video game, and it sickens me.

      Meanwhile, the 80% in this country who has to work hard but keeps losing ground keep their mouths shut and accept their own complacency.

      Where are the rabble rousers of the past who forced us to question our existence? I don't see them on the horizon, and they are needed.

      Again, thank you my dear friend. I hope you are well; you are obviously happy.

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      bizarrett, you are the type of person I like to help. You are trying to improve and make a dream happen, and I'm more than happy to lend a helping hand for someone like you. Let me know if I can do anything; people helped me early on and now it's my turn to do the same.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Pickles, I believe it too, and I hope that this hub, and others like it, will be what was needed to provide support for someone.

      Thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Gypsy, God bless the dreamers of the world!

      Thank you my fellow dreamer!

    • mejohnson profile image

      mejohnson 4 years ago

      I am still reaching for my dreams! Whether I get ahold of them or not, it's important to keep chasing them. Great hub Billybuc.

    • Annie Miller profile image

      Annie Miller 4 years ago from Wichita Falls, Texas

      When my oldest daughter was a junior in high school (1991), one of her teachers told the class that none of them would ever own a home. When she told me this I was saddened that, regardless of whether it was a true statement or not, it was a hope dasher. From that day I impressed on all my kids they could have anything they wanted if they worked for and really wanted it. From the outside, you may think they are unsuccessful - aren't living the 'American Dream', but they are happy and that makes me prouder than you can know.

      Thanks for a great Hub!

    • bizarrett81 profile image

      bizarrett81 4 years ago from Maine

      Thanks Bill. If having a child doesn't make you want to live to your fullest, I don't know what does !

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      mejohnson, good for you! Keep reaching; how do we know what is possible if we don't reach as high as we can?

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Annie, I was a teacher for eighteen years, and I have known teachers like the one you mentioned. To take away a child's dream is unacceptable. I'm so happy that your children are happy. The American Dream is a myth, anyway. :) Thank you my new friend.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Elizabeth, you got that right! :)

    • xstatic profile image

      Jim Higgins 4 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

      Where is that "inspirational" button when you need it? This is great information and reonforces the dreams of anyone sho readis it.

    • Mary Merriment profile image

      Mary Merriment 4 years ago from Boise area, Idaho

      This was a deeply moving and highly inspiring hub for me and I will be passing on this to others.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Mary, thank you! I'm happy that it meant so much to you.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      xstatic, you are a good man! Thank you Sir!

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      Martin Kloess 4 years ago from San Francisco

      Martin Kloess PM 33, I have been there. Thank you.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Martin, you have it all then. :) Thank you Sir!

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      Zulma Burgos-Dudgeon 4 years ago from United Kingdom

      I too have noticed this among people I come in contact with. It's like 'I'm here now so this is where I'll stay.' Many of the ladies I work with devote their lives to their children and grandchildren, which is all well and good. But what would happen if they decided to move somewhere else? What would they do then?

      I started reaching for the stars when I moved out. My parents' were only good role models in that I knew what I didn't want to be. What will I be when I grow up? Not really sure. When I get there, I'll let you know. In the meantime, I keep on trying new things.

      Maybe the answer to our current troubles is to get people dreaming and striving again.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Phoenix, the day you figure out how we get people to dream again, write a book about it. Instant best seller.

      I don't know my friend, but it seems to me there are a ton of people stuck in neutral,and they are missing out on some great experiences.

      Thank you as always!

      bill

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      Audrey Hunt 4 years ago from Nashville Tn.

      I am a dreamer. I have always been a dreamer. My childhood dreams provided a safe place for me...and there I found love and learned about possibilites. As I dreamed - I became. From victim to conqueror - from nothing to everything.

      My dreams of how I wanted my life formed became reality. I overcame unsurmountable obstacles. I have lived a beautiful, fulfilling life loving everyone - especially myself.

      Dreams are made of our own tiny particles. They are the stepping stones to personal success - not as the world interprets, but as our inner being does, directed by our Maker.

      I am ordering The Alchemist from the Amazon capsule. An exceptional hub, my dearest Bill.

      Dream on ~

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      Nancy Yager 4 years ago from Hamburg, New York

      It may be just this simple.... some people, kids are just able to shut off what others say or even what the media says and others, they just soak it all in, crippling them.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Audrey, you did it again! Your comment was more eloquent than my hub! LOL You are going to give me a complex.

      Beautiful book you are ordering; it comes with my seal of approval. :)

      Thank you kind lady, and dream on indeed!

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      It could be, Nancy! I'm not smart enough to figure it out, but I sure hope I see it change in the future. I think it's sad when dreams die....sadder still when there were no dreams.

      Thank you once again for your loyalty.

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      Linda Crist 4 years ago from Central Virginia

      Bill, my friend, this is a wonderful piece of work. All my life I have been saddened by a pattern in some of my friends. They are so afraid of failing that they simply do not try. I am an avid cheerleade and have tried to share with them that my greatest lessons in life came from trying to things and never really accomplishing my goals. My personal philosophy is that the only real failure is the one of never trying. I've seen the empty looks too and it always haunts me because it doesn't have to be that way. Joseph Campbell is one of my favorite philosophers and in his series on the power of myth he talks about the value of following your bliss. I guess some just never really identify what it is that would make them happy and you can't chase something if you don't know what it is. I'm so glad that I am simple minded and need no more than a sunrise to fill me with joy. lol This was a beautiful write and I felt the heart of it (and you) to my very core.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Linda, I have wondered about this for decades. Some just don't have that gene that allows them to dream and certainly they don't have the gene that allows them to chase dreams. Me? I'm always chasing my tail and wondering what would happen if....and what would happen if....and then I do those things to find out. Hell, we only get one shot at this...might as well get our money's worth, right?

      Minor rant coming tomorrow; major rant coming Thursday. I knew you would want to know. :)

    • lrc7815 profile image

      Linda Crist 4 years ago from Central Virginia

      lol...can't wait!

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      Patricia Scott 4 years ago from sunny Florida

      You are so right...Bill

      Life is too short not to make every minute count. Fear can be the reason that someone can excuse not trying. And the whole life isn't fair thing only works for so long. We have all had our share of stuff that has happened. But reaching beyond that to make our dreams come true is possible.

      I honestly believe that those who have had more than their share of adversity should be the ones who are willing to be grabbing at those stars. We survived what was hurled our way and we have a chance to go forth.

      As always I am recharged after reading here...today.. Live like you are dying is one of my family's mantra songs....

      Sending you more of those precious Angels .....:) ps

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      Highland Terrier 4 years ago from Dublin, Ireland

      Ok a good hub and in its way wise and to a great extents accurate regarding the human condition.

      But here is my problem. I reach for the stars and I get them and then I die.

      All that effort, I write a great novel, the most popular song of the century, a poem veryone quotes, a great sceince advancement etc, etc and then I die.

      I go to war I fight the good fight, I come home and ten years later I go to war again.

      I contribute to put water pump in Africa in my teens and in my dotage their still looking for water pumps for africa.

      The politician tells me he will do this, do that and lo and behold he does damn all.

      Lies, lies nothing but lies.

      We do not dream or reach for the dreams because life batters us again and again and again.

      We stand helpless as we watch it batter our neighbours on the same street in the next county across the water in a different land, still our neighbours still being battered century after century in an endless spiral that we Celts believe is continuous. One life just flows into the next in a endless flow.

      Fear certainly plays a big part in all of life, but so too does sense and the unanswered question why bother? Did the generation before us not try and the generation before that?

      Why would you risk a dream?

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      PS, the story behind that song gets to me each and every time. It is as good a mantra as I know of, and I love that you live it.

      Life is good my friend, and gets better every day.

      Thank you for those angels; hugs and blessings coming your way

      bill

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Highland, you know what? I don't have an answer for you. It is too much a part of who I am to consider not dreaming or trying for a dream, but that in know way means I don't understand what you are saying. My "job" as a writer is to inspire. I fully appreciate and understand that there are some people who will be unable to find any inspiration in my words.

      I liken it to my battle with alcoholism. Nobody can understand unless they crawl inside my skin and discover what it is like when the demons come calling. I don't expect them to understand, but I also don't want my experience to be diminished by anyone who has not experienced it. So it is with you. I have no frame of reference to understand what you have gone through. All I can do is listen and accept that there are things I do not understand. :)

      Thank you my friend; I appreciate your comment and I respect what you said.

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      Valleypoet 4 years ago

      Inspiring hub Bill, I always find words inspiring when coming from someone who has battled against the odds, and from what I have read about your life, you clearly have done that. Your work has re-lighted a small spark in me, I find your enthusiasm infectious. You have a talent for instilling a belief that anything is possible. Thank you:-))

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      Eiddwen 4 years ago from Wales

      Another gem from you my dear friend that again I relate 100%.So sorry to say my friend that this is going to be another long comment !!!!!

      As with you Billy my friends who have followed me on here know my story.

      While I was bringing up my children who by the way were popular with all school teachers (or many ha ha)I brought them up to the best of my ability to know right from wrong ;to take part in all the after school activities that were going on in our village and we were a balanced family.All except for my alcoholic ex of course !!! I can remember from time to time thinking honestly about our mismatch but then I would compare what I had in my life to the lives of some others whom I knew had also suffered bad childhoods and I felt blessed and grateful to someone;(Not sure who!!!).

      The lives of these others were monitored by Social Services;their family lives dysfunctional !

      !However looking back today I shouldn't have been grateful to some unknown being because I was the one who had created this family;I was the one who put in all the love and care and all this with an alcoholic and abusive husband on tow.

      To cut a long story short today I have travelled a long long way from those days and today I proudly live my life as ME!!Not because I am MOTHER but because I have found ME and people like me just because of this.

      I could have stayed as I was but the time came when from deep in my being it was 'now or never' !! You are so right Billy there is no reason why we cannot live our dreams and live our lives to our full potential. I have lived the dream and Ok times have been painful along the way but I can damn well tell all that today I am proud to be me; so to anyone out there, grab hold of those dreams;allow yourself to follow them and don't ever let go !!!

      Wonderful as always my dear friend and I can relate word for word.

      Lots of love from my little corner of Wales.

      Eddy.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Valley, what kind words. I really appreciate them my friend! I have had a few people who did that for me; if I can do the same for others then I'm pretty happy and satisfied. Thank you!

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Eddy, I love the way you described the moment when you realized it is now or never. Yes for sure! A sense of finding oneself is a beautiful thing. Being comfortable in our own skin...smiling from within.....it all radiates outward and brings a sense of happiness to others as well.

      Hooray for you....Hooray for me....and Hooray to anyone else who has found this secret.

      love,

      billy

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      Highland Terrier 4 years ago

      Billy , Do not for a moment think your words are not inspiring. Quite frankly you are one of the best. Indeed it is a great shame that you are not better know and heard.

      I just get these thoughts. I would put no power in them

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Highland....I just wanted you to know that I respect your thoughts, even if I don't live them. :)

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      lovedoctor926 4 years ago

      I love the quote at the beginning. This is an inspiring hub with valuable information. Just like bosses, the greatest teachers are those who believe in you and push you out of your comfort zone. I'm the type of person that hangs in there when the rest of the world has given up. Now, I won't lie, I'm such a perfectionist that when I don't do well in an exam or make a mistake, I feel so disappointed and discouraged in myself, but never quitting. I just go to the gym and release my stress and frustration and then come back and focus on the task at hand. So yeah, fear of failure is there for me, I won't deny it not as a writer though, but in what I am trying to accomplish at this time. I will email you on F.B as soon as I get a chance. I'm also working on your fiction story.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Hey Doc, welcome back! Always good to have you drop by. I love the new profile picture.

      Fear of failure? Hmmm...I am like you. I drive myself to reach levels that may not be reachable, but that doesn't stop me from trying. :) I am my harshest critic, and I keep trying to write that one perfect piece. Not sure when it will happen but that's my goal.

      Thank you as always, and I look forward to seeing your fiction story.

    • profile image

      lovedoctor926 4 years ago

      You're a very good writer already. I'm sure that if you keep working at it, you will get that one perfect piece in no time. I don't focus too much on resolutions, but I do have a map with dates and deadlines as far as possible realistic goals that I need to accomplish. I'm also my harshest critic, again it goes back to being a perfectionist and having such high expectations. I also want to write a book about my life with fiction characters of course. thanks for the photo compliment. that's my two-year old nephew with me in the picture. I will email you as soon as I get a chance with a couple of questions. thanks.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Doc! I consider myself an okay writer but I will get better. Just like a fine wine I improve with age. :)

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      lovedoctor926 4 years ago

      Lol:)

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Doc, thank you for being the person that you are. You are a keeper. :)

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      Paula 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      You know, when I read such a profound and inspiring hub.....I can't help but spend a few minutes, at the end.....in a moment of deep thought. I realized that there truly IS something extraordinary within those of us who are accelerated to full speed ahead, plowing through all odds and obstacles....when confronted with challenge.

      The only "fuel," needed, is hearing someone suggest "It's impossible."

      Another great one, bil.......UP+++

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Paula, I have reflected on that very thing. I read so many hubs about people who have a hard time with this subject, who have huge dreams but just can't get past the dreaming stage, and it saddens me. At the same time, i it makes me so appreciative that I have never known what that must be like. I like what you said...full speed ahead and obstacles be damned. :)

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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      I love the idea of "laughing at the face of challenge", Bill. This is something that I need to apply to my own life. Thanks for the inspirational advice in this hub.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Alicia, it is my pleasure. Thank you as always for the visit and have a great day!

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      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      You can't reach for the stars if you don't try. Good encouraging words on your part, Billy!

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks Deb! I gotta agree with you.

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      Eric Dierker 4 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      They are atainable if your concept of a star is realistic.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Very true, Eric! Thank you Sir!

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      Deborah Brooks Langford 4 years ago from Brownsville,TX

      Bill how did I miss this great hub.. thank you for writing such a inspiring hub. I agree reach and grab on to life right now.. and don't let go..

      great hub

      Sharing

      debbie

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Debbie, it's such a short trip that we are on; we really must make the most of it. Thank you!

      blessings,

      bill

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