Monday Motivation: All Aboard! What is your “Mayflower”?
It’s Thanksgiving week and as I sat down to write my Monday Motivation blog I could not help but think about how motivated the Pilgrims must have been in 1620 when they boarded the Mayflower. They were seeking religious freedom and a new life in a new and unknown world. Did they know what they were signing up for? Did they know they might not make it there alive, or even survive once they arrived? Yet their desire for freedom was greater than any challenge that they would face on this foreign journey.
Some of them gave up before they even got going. Originally, they were going to bring two ships, the Speedwell and the Mayflower. However, the Speedwell proved to not be sea-worthy and only the Mayflower was capable of that voyage. For some, this early frustration was too much and as noted on Mayflowerhistory.com, “Some of the passengers were so tired and disappointed with all the problems that they quit and went home.” Hmmm, how many times have you given up on something because you got frustrated with the process? Or maybe a “problem” got in the way of your dream?
The original voyage aboard a three-mastered merchant ship lasted for 66 days before they landed on the shores of Cape Cod in November. They faced rough waters, tight quarters, and limited food. Of that group of approximately 100 original settlers, only about half of them survived that first winter.
Fast-forward almost 400 years to the fast-paced world we live in where we can now get from England to Massachusetts in about 8 hours on a comfy jetliner. Our winters consist of indoor plumbing, radiant heat, and down jackets that are rated up to minus (-)70 degrees! Thank God for modern luxuries! It is difficult to comprehend how different life was that many years ago. Yet, basic human needs are still the same these many years later. On an emotional level, I believe that today we still experience the same type of emotions that they felt then. We certainly share the pursuit of a dream and often the desire for a new life. The differentiating question is how bad do you want it? Is your dream bigger than your fears and all the potential challenges you can come up with?
How many English people longed for a better life but were too afraid to actually board that ship? How often do our own fears keep us from chasing a dream that we would love? How often do we make excuses about all the reasons why we cannot do something? Just imagine for a moment if that original group of 100 English settlers let their fear win over their desire for a new life? What if they had decided to just “suck it up” and live in England and not chase after their dream? How different our history would look!
As we take this week to celebrate Thanksgiving, I encourage you to take some time to consider what big dream do you have in your life? In what areas of your life would you like to experience a “new world”? Are you ready to face whatever challenges you need to face to realize that dream as a reality? As difficult as it is to imagine life that many years ago, ask yourself if you would have boarded the Mayflower in pursuit of your dreams? Are you ready to face the unknown and the storms in pursuit of your dream?
Your challenge this week:
- Write down at least one big dream that you would absolutely love!
- Write down any fears that are holding you back from pursuing that dream.
- Make a decision: “Board the ship” or do nothing and continue to live with your current circumstances. Stay or go? Both are decisions, make one! By the way, “I need to think about it” is not a decision. The ship is leaving, are you getting on board or not?
- Offer thanks for all the good things in your life, especially the simple things that we often take for granted.
I am thankful for the opportunity to write this blog. I wish every one of you a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday!
If you would like to read more details about that original journey on the Mayflower, this is a great article: https://www.dailybreeze.com/2017/11/20/ahead-of-thanksgiving-day-2017-a-look-back-inside-the-mayflower/