If you are around 15-20 years old, then you should know you are living the last years of your brain’s great plasticity. You are still open to everything and to all possibilities. You can learn almost anything and become everything. This is the moment when you should not fall into the trap of following the path that others (adults, your parents, the society in which you live) have set for you. On the contrary, this is the moment to let your dreams run free and to develop your own vision.
To have a vision is above all to have deep feelings and a free and fertile imagination; to feel who you are, what you really like, and then to imagine what you would like to be in 10 years, in 20 years, in 50 years… It’s like writing your own story, your own biography before it takes place. It’s like watching a movie of your own creation, where the main character is you!
At this age, adults will have already largely influenced your opinions and choices. But you can try to put everything aside and go back to what you liked to do when you were 10, 9, or even 5. Remember the things that amazed you the most, the things that excited your curiosity the most, and the moments that made you the happiest. Who are you really? What do you really want to do? These are the questions whose answers will gradually determine your vision.
Yes, adults will tell you to do this and to do that… And most of the time, they will direct you towards choices that will bring you a respectable place in society, as well as a form of material and financial security. But all that is too simplistic, too trivial, too superficial. Never fall into the trap of living to learn a profession, have a job, earn money, and start a family! It’s all just too simple and too easy. Any human being is capable of doing these things and surviving. Even a slave, if he is very docile and obedient, will manage to have a job and enough means to support his family. Adults have a lot of experience and can teach you many useful and interesting things, but you should listen to nobody but yourself to have a vision.
Jobs, money, and a house are just the small, almost insignificant details of life. If you have a vision and you are passionate about achieving what you want to become, then the job, the money, and the house will come to you without you making any effort to get them. Anyone who has a dream that they are passionate about, and gets up every day to make it a reality, will easily have food and a place to sleep. So don’t worry about those things, and focus on developing your vision and growing your dreams instead of shrinking and forgetting them; that’s the most important thing.
Your dreams and visions can be the biggest, craziest, and most outlandish. If you dream of going around the world, you can also dream of going to other planets and even exoplanets. If you dream of becoming a doctor, you can dream of revolutionizing medicine. If you dream of becoming an artist, you can dream that you will change the world through your art. If you dream of becoming a scientist, you can dream of making the greatest discoveries of the millennium. There is no limit to ambition or dreaming. But to have a vision, dreaming is not enough.
To have a vision, you must close your eyes and see, see as clearly as possible. You have to be able to see yourself as you are and as you want to become. If you want to become a great scientist or a great inventor, then you have to know it, see it, and start behaving like a great scientist and a great inventor right away. If this is what you really want, then be it immediately. Without wasting time, ask yourself questions and look for answers, invent problems and find solutions. Be inspired by the world’s greatest scientists and inventors, read about their lives and the ways in which they became who they are.
Do exactly the same thing if you want to become a great painter or a great musician. Be inspired by the greatest and the best of all time, and tell yourself that you can become better than them. Practice your art day and night, explore all possible techniques and tricks. Deepen your art with philosophy. Even if the necessity of survival takes you to activities that seem like a waste of time, never forget your vision and your real destination. A true ship’s captain may easily take detours here and there to circumvent obstacles and storms, but he always gets back on his chosen course in the end. Whatever happens to you, never forget your true mission. Never fall into the trap of cowardice, laziness, or even worse into the trap of ease and habit. If you forget your dreams, you may have money, houses, family, friends, but you will have lost your soul. You will end up being a slave to a situation you never really wanted. As an adult, you’ll be too afraid to let go and start over. You’ll already be trapped in the easiness of it all. That’s why the time to act is now.
You can change your vision as many times as you want. A vision doesn’t have to be linked to a job or a profession. Rather, a vision is a clear picture, like a movie on a screen, of how you would like to feel and look in decades. What kind of knowledge would you like to have and share with others? What kind of social atmosphere would you like to live in? What kind of friends would you like to have? What kind of environment would you like to be in? What are really the most important things to you? To all these questions and many others, you can constantly adjust your answers and change them completely along the way. The important thing is to always have a direction and a vision.
It is the fact of constantly having a vision that will allow you to always find motivation and meaning to each day of your life. It will allow you to make decisions, to make a choice between one thing and another, between one path and another. Your dream and your vision will be your greatest remedy against boredom, laziness, loneliness, illness, and decay. When you get up in the morning, you know who you are because you know who you want to be.
Express your vision to people you trust, and keep silent with those who won’t understand you and won’t bring you anything, if not discourage you. You must surround yourself with those who will be material or emotional springboard for you to move forward. Don’t be afraid of anything, and especially not of failure. If you don’t try anything, you won’t accomplish anything. If you’re a little scared now, you’ll be even more scared later. So go ahead and waste no more time. Create your vision now, and start living it now!