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How do you know when it's time to stop following a dream and find another?

No one wants to be a quitter, but it also takes a lot of character to acknowledge that your capabilities will only take you so far.

When I was 10, I dreamed of being an olympic gymnast but I later realized that it was too late to build enough talent and strength to compete (esp. since I didn't have Superman genes). I've gone through a graduate program and 4 years of work experience that have given me professional stability in a career path that interests me but doesn't ignite my passion... should I throw in the towel, start over and say the past 4 years and grad school were just a bad investment, or just be content with my success and stability and refocus my energy on personal hobbies?

Tenacity is such a great asset, but sometimes we must accept that some things really are out of our reach. Everyone is talented in their own ways, but not everyone can be an olympian, president or a billionaire... how do you know when a dream is just a dream?


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    Feb 28 2013: It is time to change it when it is no longer fun and/or inspiring.

    But just because you have "outgrown" a dream, doesn't mean that your effort is wasted. I learned a lot through my secret dream of being a concert pianist - though my parents wouldn't allow me to practice for more than a half-hour a day because we were so many children in such a small house. I learned that practicing in my bed before sleep - practicing only in my mind - cause me to play much better in far less time. Now I apply that little tidbit in so many areas of my life. I still enjoy my piano, but I don't pretend to be able to become a concert pianist - unless the concert is for friends and family.

    Please get rid of the notion that your efforts are wasted. Those with the most satisfying lives are those with the broadest base of knowledge (thus those with the most opportunities). Learning is never a waste. Settling is.

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