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How to Stop Being Afraid of Your Own Dreams and Maximize Your Impact in Life

Lindsay: This is an All Ears English Podcast, Episode 214: “How to Stop Being Afraid of Your Own Dreams and Maximize Your Impact in Life.”

[Instrumental]

Gabby: Welcome to the All Ears English Podcast, where you’ll finally get real, native English conversation with your hosts, Lindsay McMahon, the ‘English Adventurer’ and Gabby Wallace, the ‘Language Angel’, from Boston, USA.

[Instrumental]

Lindsay: Today we are back with our temporary co-host, Christie, the ‘Fearless New Yorker’. Let’s get to the show.

[Instrumental]

Lindsay: In today’s episode, you’ll learn about one amazing All Ears English listener who has set an incredible goal and dream for his English and his life and why that’s making all the difference in his English level.

[Instrumental]

Lindsay: Are you on our email list yet? Join more than 5,000 other All Ears English listeners and make sure you don’t miss any of our amazing All Ears English episodes. Get on our list now and we’ll send you a weekly summary of the most exciting and interesting All Ears English moments every week. These episodes are HOT, so go to AllEarsEnglish.com/HOT. That’s AllEarsEnglish.com/H-O-T.

[Instrumental]

Lindsay: Hey Christie, how’s it going today?

Christie: It’s awesome. How are you doing Lindsay?

Lindsay: Welcome. Thank you. I am great. It’s a rainy day here in Boston. The rain is kind of pattering on my window, and (uh) the wind is howling.

Christie: Oh.

Lindsay: How’s the weather in New York?

Christie: Well, we’re neighbors so it’s not that much different. I don’t think it’s as windy, but it’s definitely shades of grey.

Lindsay: Ooh, “shades of grey.” I like that quote. Cool. Well, today Christie, I wanna (want to) talk a little bit about – (you know), about the idea of (you know), why are we actually learning English. So you know our listeners…

Christie: (Uhn).

Lindsay: …all over the world are learning English, but I have a great success story of one of our listeners and he’s from Turkey. His name is…

Christie: (Uhn).

Lindsay: …Sergin. I hope I got that pronunciation right. Maybe it’s Ser-hin. I don’t speak Turkish. Christie, do you speak Turkish?

Christie: No. I don’t even eat turkey.

Lindsay: I don’t speak Turkish. All right. So my deepest apologies if I got the pronunciation wrong, but I think he knows, (um), who he is. So I wanna (want to) point out that, (you know), when we go ahead and link our English study to an actual dream, we can have a lot more success. (You know), (like), why are actually studying English? Are you studying it because someone told you that you should or because your friends are studying, (right)? So the example with Sergin is what he actually wants to do is he wants to become an actor in Hollywood. How cool is that Christie?

Christie: That’s cool.

Lindsay: I love it. That is so super cool. Do you know anyone who is an actor in New York?

Christie: Yeah. I met a lot of actors and actresses. So being an actor and actress is totally possible. (I mean), how much money you make is gonna (going to)…

Lindsay: Yeah.

Christie: …that’s gonna (going to) depend.

Lindsay: Right. Sure. But that’s okay because if you’re doing it because you love acting, then that really – that becomes a little bit irrelevant. And this is something that’s accessible, I believe, to everyone. An-an-and what he’s done is he started listening to English between four and eight hours every day.

Kristin: (Uhn).

Lindsay: And he says that he never feels bored because of his goal. (Like), he’s always thinking about his dream, his end dream. It’s not just – so there’s gotta (got to) be something bigger that you’re working towards, (right).

Kristin: (Uh-huh).

Lindsay: He says we need to find an intense dream to get that real motivation…

Christie: (Uh-huh).

Lindsay: …to do that.

Christie: (Uh-huh).

Lindsay: Yeah. I really like that. So I think this applies to more than just learning English. (You know), I think this applies to life. Christie, have you ever been in a situation where you found yourself using the word ‘should’, (right)?

That’s, that’s a, that’s a buzz word, sort of a danger word. And what happened? And can you tell us about that situation?

Christie: Yeah. I think I use the word ‘should’ most of my life. In fact, I still say, “I shouldn’t do that.” And that’s definitely something I work on, (uh), (uh), but I think on a bigger level, (um), I was sitting in (um), (uh), a lecture in college. I think it was a World History or something and it was (uh) sophomore year. I had spent a year – I mean the previous summer meditating. (Um)…

Lindsay: Wha-what is a sophomore year? Just one quick question…

Christie: Oh.

Lindsay: …for our listeners.

Christie: Sure. Great question. (Uh), sophomore is the second year in either high school or college.

Lindsay: Thank you.

Christie: Yeah. So, (um), I, I was sitting there and at the end of the lecture, I was like “Wow, I learned something and I paid attention,” (uh), because I realized – and then at that point, I realized that most of the reason that I had a difficulty in school growing up is because I never paid attention and for me it was because everything about school was a ‘should’.

Lindsay: Oh, god.

Kristin: You should do this homework. You should read. You should pay attention.

And it wasn’t linked to anything that I was interested in or any goals I had set for myself.

Lindsay: Oh, god, yeah. (You know), I feel like I can identify with that Christie ‘cause (because) I think I did the same thing. And that’s why I could never remember any facts from the history books because I just didn’t – (I mean), I didn’t care because it was presented as a ‘should’. “You should get grade…”

Kristin: (Uh-huh).

Lindsay: “..good grades. You should go to college. You ‘should’ do this, (right), get your GPA.” Right.

Christie: (Uh-hmm).

Lindsay: So how did you get over that Christie? So that class, was that a turning point for you, (like), did you change your major? Did you choose a major based on that decision or…?

Christie: Yeah. And that was what was nice. I think by my second half of my sophomore year, my third year, I was able to take business courses, which for me was the interesting – and (you know), I, I really agree with (uh) Sergi, Ser-Ser…

Lindsay: Sergin.

Christie: Sergin.

Lindsay: (Uh-huh).

Christie: Sergin

Lindsay: You got it.

Christie: (Um), for me, it sounds a little – I don’t know. I’m embarrassed to say this a little bit because I don’t know if it’ll happen. But I really believe that there’s – I’m going to do something that’ll change the world.

Lindsay: Ooh.

Christie: And…

Lindsay: I like that. Can you say that again? I love that.

Christie: I really believe I’m, I’m supposed to do something that’s gonna (going to) change the world, and I will. And I actually believe everyone can and will.

(Um), I just felt very connected to that purpose. (Um), and so sometimes it’s not even just a goal, but this sense of purposeness…

Lindsay: Oh, yeah.

Christie: …purpose. That’s – I don’t think purposeness is a word.

Lindsay: Yeah, yeah. Purpose.

Christie: Purpose.

Lindsay: Yeah.

Christie: (Um), that can, can drive you and from the purpose, you kind of usually set goals. And so I felt this big purpose and I didn’t know exactly what it would be, but from – I should say it was an intermediate school, which is the school before high school…

Lindsay: (Uh-hmm).

Christie: …(uh) that I - or some people call it junior high.

Lindsay: Middle school. Junior high, (right).

Christie: Middle school. Junior… Yeah. That I was supposed to do that and I just felt like, well, each path I take, each step I take is going to lead me towards understanding the goals I need to achieve that. So that’s what kept me motivated.

Lindsay: Oh, that’s so cool. I love what you just said Christy. It’s super inspiring because I feel that way too. (Like) I feel like I’m meant to change the world.

Christie: Yeah.

Lindsay: And I wonder if our listeners feel that way. I wonder if we’re all born with that feeling. (Like) as kids, as teenagers we have this fence that we’re gonna (going to) change the world in some way, but then I wonder if it gets trained out of us…

Christie: Yeah.

Lindsay: …through people saying ‘should’. “You ‘should’ do this. You ‘should’ do that,” and then we lose sight of, of that dream. And that’s – to me, that’s really sad, but this is again – Sergin is an example of how we can get that back on track, (right). He’s, he’s, (you know), just going ahead and he’s putting it out there. He’s saying my dream is to act in Hollywood and that’s why I’m learning English.

Christie: (Uh-hmm).

Lindsay: And that’s why he’s doing that.

Christie: (Uh-hmm).

Lindsay: You nahmean (You know what I mean)? Something similar for me, when I started working in English schools in New York, I was just kinda (kind of) – I was bored. (I mean), I loved the interaction with students, but it wasn’t linked to anything that I wanted to take ownership over as creating my own thing.

Kristin: (Uh-hmm).

Lindsay: So it was a lot of ‘should’. It was just, it was a paycheck and that was it and I was really uninspired.

Christie: (Uhn). (Uh-huh).

Lindsay: But now I’m building All Ears English and I think we’re inspiring a lot of people. And so my work, I’m working, (you know), eight hours a day or more and that’s linked to a goal…

Christie: (Uhn).

Lindsay: …to something bigger, a vision.

Christie: (Uh-huh).

Lindsay: Like you said Christie, a purpose.

Christie: (Uh-huh). Yeah.

Lindsay: Yeah. Yeah. That’s awesome. Awesome. So I hope you guys can feel a little bit of inspiration for this. Not just for your English learning, but also for your life. (You know), if you feel like you’re meant to change the world in some way, it doesn’t have to be something huge. Right?

Christie: (Uh-huh).

Lindsay: It doesn’t have to be big, but let yourself (sort of) hear that voice and start taking little steps to move towards that. Link your goal to a purpose and get to work.

Christie: Yeah. And if I could just add one more thing.

Lindsay: Please do, please do.

Christie: (Um), yeah, because I did a lot of (uh) meditation and writing and thoughtprocessing on this. (Uh), essentially, I think what we all want is motivation, (uh), energy and really this is gonna (going to) sound interesting, but we want something worthy of our attention

Lindsay: (Uhn).

Christie: We want something that keeps our attention, is worthy of that. And so, it’s not even so much the goal or the purpose, but it is th-th-that goal or propose that creates the, the essential need for attention, (um)…

Lindsay: Ooh, yeah. I like that.

Christie: …to our life. An-an-and we want to be attentive to our life. We… the worst, the worst thing in the world, the worst thing is to not feel like it’s worth our attention and that is (crosstalk)…

Lindsay: Right. To be complacent, right.

Christie: Yeah, and something we’re just like “I don’t feel like paying attention,” anand we don’t feel good. So, (um), it’s (i-i-uh), it’s not, it’s not so much the goal has to be perfect, but it has to be something that creates attention for your life. (Um), and one thing I think that really, really creates attention because it doesn’t need to even be a really big goal, like I’m gonna (going to) change the world.

Lindsay: No.

Christie: I’m gonna (going to) change poverty. (Um), but, I think it (kind of) in some sense, we actually have to link it to it helping a single person.

Lindsay: (Umm).

Christie: (Um), and imagining that. And for me, I, I imagine that there is a girl, (um), that is (k-) – she doesn’t have the best opportunities in life and she’s a little helpless and in a way she’s almost like my sister, and she’s waiting for me. And I think that, (um), to some extent, our goals ultimately connect with other – helping other people. So…

Lindsay: (Hmm). I like that.

Christie: …(um), if you really need – if there’s that day, that day – I – some – I had that day yesterday, where you’re like “I don’t know why I’m doing any of this,” you get discouraged. (Um), maybe think on a personal level…

Lindsay: (Hmm).

Christie: …of who you’re gonna (going to) affect.

Lindsay: Think about that one person whose life you’re gonna (going to) change.

Christie: Yeah, (crosstalk).

Lindsay: Ooh, I love it. Christie, this has been fantastic. What a cool topic. And we would love to hear your thoughts on this topic guys. So why don’t youcome on over to AllEarsEnglish.com/214 and let us know what you think about this idea. So thanks for listening today guys and have a good day.

Christie: You’re welcome. Thanks Lindsay. Thanks for having me. Bye.

[Instrumental]

Lindsay: If you wanna (want to) put your ears into English more often, be sure to subscribe to our podcast in iTunes on your computer or on your smartphone. Thanks so much for listening and see you next time.

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