How to Achieve Your Most Ambitious Goals – with Special Guest

I am very excited to bring to you a special guest to share the journey of a vision manifested.

Today I’m joined by Steven Eckert. Steven is has a few roles in my life – he’s my brother, and he also owns I Did This Productions along with his wife, and together they put together all of my videos. Instead of being behind the camera, he was in front of the camera for this week’s video, which you can watch or read about the conversation here.

I invited Steven to share the process of him realizing his dream. We recently filmed our videos in his home in Sooke, British Columbia on Vancouver Island, which is a dream realized!

Previously, he was living in Alberta and the dream came from somewhere. I asked him, how was the dream even born? He answered, “When Jen and I got married, we’ve always kind of felt Alberta wasn’t maybe the final destination for us. So as we traveled, we were always kind of keeping our eyes open, asking ourselves what feels like home? One time we came to Vancouver Island for a vacation, and it just felt like this is right. This is home. That was about 10 years ago, and it started a conversation between us. It started as a little seed in our minds, and then we started talking about if we were to move to the island, where would we move? How much are houses there? Then it was asking what the weather is like there right now? As time went on it went from ‘this is interesting’ to ‘we are moving closer to it,’ and about three years ago we just started making real decisions in that direction.”

It’s so important to highlight how it started as a nudge like, “something doesn’t feel quite right about Alberta.”

Sometimes people feel like other people are born with dreams, and they just know exactly what they want. But sometimes dreams come from just noticing when there are little nudges like that, where something doesn’t feel right, and then staying open to possibility.

What most people do is they settle on “I’ve just got to make myself happy with what I have,” rather than listening to “ooh – maybe there’s a dream, maybe there’s an idea.” So Steven and Jen listened. They tuned into that feeling where something didn’t feel right. They stayed curious about what that could be, and they explored possibilities.

"All the little steps we took moved us forward to our goal. The goal wasn't IF this happens, it was this IS happening. So how do we go about making it happen?"

So the seed was planted, and it went from a “maybe one day” to “we’re doing this!”

Steven said, “One little step at a time. We were always getting closer, and it didn’t matter if we knew what the whole plan was.”

Sometimes when you take on something all at once, it feels too big, too overwhelming, and oftentimes our expectations are so high. Then, if we don’t see the results right away, there’s this letdown or this disappointment. What I heard Steven saying is there was a dream. And instead of getting overwhelmed with everything at once, they said, “Let’s take the step we CAN take.”

He says, “Every step that we took just made us more confident that this was really going to happen. We didn’t know the exact direction we were going to go in, but we knew it was going to happen. We didn’t even know what time frame it was going to take, but every step we took, every time we looked at the weather, it just made it more real in our brain. It was really fun to go on this adventure of discovering where and when we were going to go. And it kept our belief strong.”

At first, when a big dream gets launched, we don’t always believe it is possible! Sometimes you can’t see how you’re gonna get there, so you don’t always believe in it. The way you build your believing is by doing what you can do. The more you take steps, it builds the believing. And so, if you don’t believe it’s possible, not to let that stop you, it’s totally normal. It’s part of the process, and the believing starts to happen. As you take the step, you get evidence that feels good! And that believing grows and grows.

Today’s topic on YouTube

Steven says, we really saw it coming together as it came closer, because the last couple years, we made some big steps. We sold our house. We didn’t yet have a house in our new place, so we sold our house without a house to move to.

“We came out to the island one weekend and said, we have to buy a place! And we did it in two days. I think the big thing for us, too, was keeping our options open. We weren’t looking for perfection. We didn’t have a long list of things that we needed, it was our goal to move there. Everything else would work around it. And it worked out well! In a market that had very little options, we found a place that suits us perfectly.”

This is what happens when you believe in your dream, you’re taking the step you can take, even when the conditions don’t say that this is possible. In Steven and Jen’s case, the market conditions were very stringent. Steven says, “We came in with a list of twelve houses to look at, and by the time we started looking at the houses, four of them were already sold. The realtor told us that what we’re looking for is going to be hard to find. We stayed open and we ended up finding something that actually beat our expectations.”

This is so important, because as you’re moving towards your dream, there’s going to be experts and people in your life that tell you, this is impossible! This is gonna be hard. It could be a doctor, a real estate agent, a parent, and there will be people arguing for why your dream is not possible.

But they had the belief. They had the expectation. And within two days, they found the perfect place.

So on the other side of your dream realized, it sounds like smooth sailing, right? Steve Jobs said, “it’s easy to connect the dots looking backwards but it’s impossible to connect them looking forward.” So here we are sitting on the other side, where it’s easy to connect the dots, but when you’re in the midst of the process, you don’t know how it’s all going to unfold and have to sometimes make some scary decisions! For Steven and Jen, at the beginning of all this, didn’t have a clear path. They had conditions and circumstances that felt like barriers, and real reasons why it wasn’t realistic to make the move.

Steven describes a few barriers here. “Timewise, if we moved earlier, prices would have been cheaper, the cost to move would have been less. I owned a business at the time, which I had to sell, and we didn’t know when that was going to happen. We also have a daughter that we wanted to move before she reached her teens, and we were concerned about her support system, leaving her friends and her extended family, which was of course a big concern.”

So the price of housing where they were going, Steven owned a local business that had to be sold, they have a daughter to uproot. For you who has a dream, but also has all the reasons why it can’t happen, or why it’s going to be hard – those don’t go away. The timing’s never right, the money’s never right, the conditions are never perfect, but you have to decide. Steven and Jen decided for that move. So, ask yourself, like Steven and Jen asked themselves, what can we do to make this happen? And keep taking those steps.

“All the steps we took sometimes felt like barriers, but it all moved us forward to our goal. Again, the goal wasn’t IF this happens, it was this IS happening. So how do we go about making it happen?”

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Henry David Thoreau says, “if one advances confidently in the direction of their dreams…” and that’s what Steven and Jen were doing, endeavouring to live the life they imagined. They kept doing what they could, knowing the direction they were headed, and doors kept opening. So 10 years ago it was an idea, and now they are sitting in the living version of this life.

I asked Steven, how does that feel? “Our hearts are so full right now. We are realizing our love for the outdoors, we’re walking, going outside all the time, we’re by the ocean (they are a two minute drive to the ocean in three different ways!). It just feels like home, it feels right. Our winters are more comfortable, and our whole family is just really enjoying it. Olivia has settled in with her school and her friends and, it’s hard to even explain how excited we are to be here!”

There are so many people who have a dream or a vision, and they don’t know how to get there. I asked him if he were to look back at himself 10 years ago, what would you say to that version of you now? He says, “Stay on track. It’s really taking every little step you can. Every time, look at something towards your goal, for us it was looking at the weather, looking at what is happening on the island at the time, when is our next trip just to go visit.”

We talk a lot about the power of baby steps, and that’s really what he described. There were some big steps that needed to be taken, but it was the little steps too, like checking the weather, looking for houses, and not diminishing the power of those baby steps in service of their vision. Like Steven said, each one of those is taking you closer.

He adds, “Taking the baby steps made the big steps easy. There was no second thought on the big steps after you’ve been doing the small steps for so long. Once you have the big steps in front of you, it was just what needed to get done. It built momentum.”

Here’s a benefit for me, I get to come and visit the island now and bring my kids, and I have these wonderful trips with my kids to visit family. It’s a dream fulfilled on my side too, which I think is important because sometimes we feel like following our dream is selfish. There’s a part of us that thinks we are going to leave people behind. And what I know to be true is that when you follow your passion, when you follow your purpose, there is good in it for everyone. I believe as a family we have certainly felt that.

I celebrate Steven, Jen and Olivia for taking those big steps and small steps every day, and for achieving your dream! I hope this inspires you towards your dreams. And just imagine taking that baby step today, and continuing to do that every day. Where could you be a year from now? Three years from now? A decade from now? But it requires you to take your step today.

Here is to you living a life you love,

Stacey

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About Stacey

Stacey Berger

Stacey Berger

After 16 years of climbing the corporate ladder, mentoring entrepreneurs in marking, operations and finance, I made the decision in 2014 to teach success principles full time, combining my love of business and personal development.

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