“Why is your head so big?” Lol, someone asked me this question on one of them anonymous questions websites. (Quick side-note: if the person who asked that is reading this blog post, message me – I just want to talk). Now I’m not one to fight anonymous people on the internet so I answered, ‘Dreams too large to fit in a small head’ Due to put that on a t-shirt…
“When I grow up I want to be a…[Insert ambitious dream here].” What was your ambitious dream? Professional footballer, that was mine. At any period of my life, ask me that question and the answer would be the same. Now at 20 years young, having had one hell of a journey, I’m still not a professional footballer. You might have thought I’d have given up by now, but let me tell you, the only way I’m giving up is if the Lord himself sits me down and tells me that this football thing isn’t for me and even then, I’d question it.
Throughout my journey I’ve have seen so many talented footballers fade out of the game because they’ve given up, time is chasing them and they’re letting it catch them. They have people in their earhole saying it’s too late, they have distractions around them, they have minor setbacks, they fear, ultimately they’re not willing to put in the work. Nothing good in life comes easy, sacrifice and hard work is the definitive foundation of your ambitious career, your dream job, your profiting business. People don’t see the production process, they just see the final product. To be successful in your line of work there will be blood, sweat and tears; a lot of tears.
As an athlete I’d say I’m in pretty good shape, my friend always mocks me about how I came out of the womb with a 6 pack, if only he knew! The morning aches I’ve experienced, feeling like I’m going to vomit in training, having to wake up early in the morning for training whilst my mates are having a lay in – it is hard. It is perfectly natural to have self-conflicting thoughts, to question yourself. ‘Is it really worth it’ You travel 2 hours for a game on a cold winter’s day where you played the last 20 mins and you end up losing 4-0. ‘Is it really worth it’ you think to yourself on the journey back. It is. When you’re where you want to be, you’ll look back on moments like these and laugh at the thought of giving up.
Don’t let people who have settled in their lives, who are living to work drag you into their routine of living to work, make sure you stay working to live! If I had to list every time someone bashed my dreams of going pro (friends included), I promise this blog post would be days long, that being said, if I had to list every occasion where someone embraced me and my dream this blog would be years long, and that’s where my focus has realigned. On top of pursuing this dream for myself, I don’t do it so I can ‘Prove the haters wrong’ as the cliché goes, I do it so I can prove my supporters right and this mentality has me much more level-headed, as opposed to doing things in a state of anger/vengeance resulting in me rushing decisions, and doing things that weren’t necessarily prosperous for my career. People will upset you, people you least expect to let you down will let you down and they won’t always agree with your decisions because it doesn’t suit their selfish needs, others will be jealous and disguise it as a ‘Bro I’m just being realistic’ or ‘Do you really think …’ If you hear these statements, massive red flag alert. You need to be on the ball when it comes to situations like these and be able to cut out these kinds of people out so that they don’t displace you from your path. If that means distancing yourself then so be it. Life.
That being said, be sensible with it; Don’t put all of your eggs in one basket. Me, I’m blessed and fortunate enough to be able to play and express myself through sport, God forbid I get a career ending injury, what happens then? Have a plan b, because nobody knows tomorrow. I’m at university because I need to have something to fall back on, and what better to fall back on than a nice comfy first-class degree (My God is able).
Proverbs 3: 5 ‘ Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding’
My last point is something I realised quite late on, but I saw that others were doing well in the world of sport, people who weren’t necessarily as talented as me (Even if I say so myself) or worked as hard as me yet still, they were reaping the benefits of the beautiful game. I always used think to myself why, why is it actually like that. Then I realised, it is by the grace of God that they are where they are, and it is also by the grace of God that I am where I am now, and in all things thank Him, because life could be a lot worse than it is now. It is so important to be grateful at every stage of your journey. The message I’m trying to relay to you all is to TRUST IN GOD because He is the ultimate reason you’ll get to where you are, God has given me this talent for a reason right? Earlier on I said no one knows tomorrow, no one except God in Heaven who can easily change your life in a second; One of my mates came to uni studying civil eng, year and a half later he’s signed for West Ham on a 3 year pro. Your situation can change in an instant, and so it is vitally important to keep the faith, because no one’s timing is better than God’s timing, all the trials and tribulations that you encounter are all preparing you for something great. Build a relationship with Him, and you’ll be even more excited to work towards your goal everyday simply because you know God’s got your back. In Matthew 7:7 it says ‘ask and you shall receive […]’ don’t stop asking! God see’s how passionate you are and it is our duty to trust that He’ll deliver the goods!
A message to all, I implore you if you have a talent that you love or an idea you’re passionate about, whether it’s entering the world of professional sport, rising to the top in a company, being an actor/actress, owning your own profitable business or even writing a blog, it’s time for you to get up and make it a reality, work endlessly and endure the hardships that come, be successful by your own right and write your own story along the way because as corny as it sounds, our life is a book full of empty pages, every day you live your life a page is written, you are in control of your own story so give us a happy ending.
Signing out now, I’ll keep you updated on my journey to the premier league, and I wish you success in your endeavours as you try to make it to the top!
The RealTalk Team