What does it take to “reach for the stars”?

Reach for the stars - Standing on the Edge

Dreams can come true – Standing on the Edge

 

On October 14th, 2012, around 12:08pm MDT, Felix Baumgartner showed the world his literal interpretation of how he would ‘reach for the stars’. I was fortunate enough to be one of the 8,000,000 people who tuned in to watch the live feed on youtube of what was quickly becoming a historic event. My intent here isn’t just to reiterate all the astonishing feats accomplished that day. Anyone with access to the internet, or who had proximity to a water-cooler discussion Monday morning would be able to find out about the 5 Guinness Records set simultaneously (including breaking the sound barrier with his body! WHAT?!). Anyone with any interest in the subject could easily find out Red Bull was the key sponsor of the event, and that it took over two years of planning with a team of scientists to successfully pull it off. No, my intent is merely to spread emphasis that this ability lies within each and every one of us. The ability to set seemingly unachievable goals, and dig down deep within, against all odds, spread your fingers to the skies and reach for the stars. We have the ability to make our dreams happen!

Felix Baumgartner in Training

Reach for the stars takes preparation

Making it happen!

How will you reach for the stars today?

“Fearless Felix” had a dream. A dream of doing something almost inconceivable. At one point or another in each of our lives, we have caught ourselves daydreaming of doing something beyond our normal limits. It doesn’t have to be something like skydiving from the stratosphere. Maybe it’s your dream to try bungee jumping (still on my bucket list!). Perhaps when you reach for the stars, you are dreaming of taking your first trip overseas. It might even be something no ones ever tried before?

Reach for the stars - Shots from space

Felix Baumgartner - The First step

The first step is always the hardest!!

So what’s stopping you?

For most of us it’s fear: fear of failure, and fear of the unknown. The hardest step to take is definitely that first step (and sometimes the last step, as I’m sure it was in Felix’s case). For me, my idea of reaching for the stars was go live my life as a ‘digital nomad’. Working on the road, and trying everything I ever dreamt of doing, and even some things I hadn’t. However, to make the decision to leave my job, my home, my friends and family behind, and live a new life on the road came with a lot of fears and self-doubts. Even after having a tremendous amounts of travel experience, and many accomplishments already in my life, making that decision was still none the easier. I had to shut off my brain from any of those “what if’s” that were bogging me down, and just make the decision and stick to it.

Felix Landing Safely http://www.redbullstratos.com/

Realizing his dreams!

Felix Baumgartner - on solid ground

Nothing beats the feeling of realizing your dreams!

Stop thinking about what if, and start to realize ‘what is’

Once I made the decision, and felt committed to it (very important!) – everything seemed to start fitting in place. A volunteer job opportunity arose in a country of interest, friends were planning on passing through while I was there, I was able to sell most of my belongings and give away what was left. It just seemed that when I finally found what I wanted most in my heart, my heart shouted it out to the Universe. I knew how at this point in my life I wanted to reach for the stars! It was to my surprise that almost completely naturally, the Universe answered.

I’ve since met many people with similar stories of accomplishment of their dreams on my travels. Other travel bloggers, such as Raymond Walsh who wanted to reach for the stars by breaking free of the shackles of his 9-5 job, or Anthony Middleton, who’s dream was to inspire people (like myself) to continually challenge ourselves.

“I know the whole world is watching now. I wish you could see what I can see. Sometimes you have to be up really high to understand how small you are… I’m coming home now.” – Felix Baumgartner

Felix Baumgartner - Anything is Possible

Reach for the stars… They are within your grasp!

 

It doesn’t take a super hero to make dreams happen. Felix is just a man. He wanted to reach for the stars in the most literal sense of the expression, and he did EVERYTHING he could to make that happen. He is living the dream. If you want to live your dream – start listening to your heart, and try to speak it’s voice. The more you listen to it, the more excited you will become, and the easier the seemingly impossible feat may appear. Obstacles will stand in your way, but they are only there to make your dream that much more real. You can overcome them. Anything is possible. Even jumping to the Earth from Outer Space!

“Stop Dreaming to Live, and Start Living the Dream!” – Ian Ord

What is your idea to reach for the stars? What do you want to do more than anything else in life? Have you already started taking the steps to living your dream, and if so what were your biggest obstacles? Please share your thoughts in the comments below!

Disclaimer: All photos used in this article are property of the Red Bull Stratos project. Sadly, I was not able to take my own photographs of the event, as it would have entailed me being in the stratosphere too.