The economy has been hard on many families. Some of you have struggled through months (or even years!) of unemployment or underemployment.
When you struggle for a long time and are barely eeking by, it can be easy to want to give up. To feel like you’re never going to get anywhere or get out of the hole you feel like you’re stuck in.
I know the feeling. I’ve felt very hopeless and helpless at times in my life.
But if there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that you’ll never make any progress if you stop dreaming. You’ll never get anywhere if you feel like taking a step in the right direction is a pointless exercise.
We live in America and, compared with so much of the world, we have immense opportunities and possibilities at our disposal. Times are tough here for many of you, but you can still access so much free information online or at your local library.
You can start a blog (for free!) and grow it to the point that you earn a part-time — or even full-time — income from it. You can start a service job for almost nothing out of pocket and turn it into a thriving business.
You can join local groups to network with other businesses and professionals. You can take free or very inexpensive classes to learn new skills. There is a wealth of help, tools, and resources available — free of charge — for you to learn and grow as an individual and to help you develop a business or improve and sharpen your marketable skills.
I’m living proof that the American Dream is alive and well. I remember so vividly the hopelessness I felt when we found out we were expecting our first child and I was too sick to continue working.
I had no special skills, no special degrees or training or credentials, and no special marketable talents. But we needed money to eat and have a roof over our heads and Jesse’s part-time income while in law school was not enough to cover all of our basic bills.
I may not have had credentials, but I had time and determination. And so I spent countless hours researching ways to make money from home on the internet and then I jumped in and started trying things.
So much of those first feeble attempts were pathetic failures (I’m embarrassed to even admit some of the crazy things I tried or considered trying!), but with each failure, I learned a little bit more. And I kept trying and learning until things slowly started to work.
Over time, I’ve come to believe that there is a world of possibility out there and it’s available to anyone and everyone who is willing to work hard, put forth enormous effort, think outside the box, and not give up when the going gets tough.
So dream big dreams. Don’t give up hope. And don’t ever let anyone tell you that you’re stuck.
As long as you have breath in your body, there is opportunity out there for you!
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