I grew up in a small village in Iran. My father was a farmer and my mother was a house keeper. Most teenagers in my village became farmers or other workers in the village or in the town nearby. So how did I end up receiving a scholarship to study at the University of Toronto, become the top student in medical school, and later a neurosurgeon? It was not because I was smarter than the rest of the children in the village. The main reason was because I thought about becoming a doctor since I was a child and I kept that dream alive within myself.
I was living in the village, but my dream was to study in Harvard, John Hopkins or the Mayo Clinic and to get a Noble prize. I did not know how to get to the United States and to study there, but I always thought about it and always believed in my dreams. Those thoughts motivated me, and so I studied and learned for hours. Because I believed in my dream so strongly, I kept working at it and working at it and today I am living close to Boston and doing my research about the brain, mind and the effect our thoughts have on our emotional and physical health at Harvard.
You have a story too or you can create one right now.
When you start working toward your dream, others, including your family, teachers and classmates will usually want to help you. First you will need to believe in yourself and focus on your goal with that intensity that others believe in your dream. Do not get tired or change your dream if you do not see the result fast enough. You may need to work for years until you reach your goal. There is no short cut to success.
As the late Dr. Wayne Dyer said, “The elevator to success is broken, you need to take the stairs.”
I believe the best place for you during your teenage years is in school. It will occupy you with goals and learning and surround you with an environment that is focused on learning and education. If you can find some good friends that want to be successful too, it will help to increase your concentration and motivation. During the teenage years, your rational brain has not fully developed yet, your surroundings and how you spend your time will affect your life forever. Do not let other people make your goals for you. You can listen to their advice, but eventually, your life is your own. You need to be excited about it.
If you have a problem or you make a mistake, the way to get out is to take time to think about it and you will find a way. Thinking is the answer for having a successful and fulfilling life. Learn to think, imagine and visualize. Learn to be more rational than emotional. When you want to make a decision, be sure is not solely based on your emotions.
Think accurately. Read the biographies of successful people. Remember that if somebody else has done something you want to do, you can do it too. Even if nobody else has ever done it before, you can still be the first to do it just like many others who have done things for the first time. You are as smart as and as capable as anyone else and you can find a way. The only thing you need to do is think about what you want to do, believe in yourself and in your dream, and then go out there and do whatever you can do to make it happen.
You may not see how everything will all come together, and that’s OK. As Steve Jobs said, “You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards.” You have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something—your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.
Get help from people you trust. Your family loves you no matter what. Go back to them. Start again as often as you have to. As Winston Churchill once said, “Never, never, never give up.”
Dr. M. Rashidi
About the Author: Dr. Mahmoud RASHIDI, Monthly Mentor, is an adult and pediatric neurosurgeon who has witnessed hundreds of healing journeys during his 16-year career. He is passionate about refocusing the mind, thoughts and feelings toward achieving greater happiness, optimal health, and overall well-being particularly while recovering from an illness or injury. Dr. Rashidi’s goal is to raise greater awareness about the health-optimizing effects of achieving physical, mental, emotional and spiritual balance. We have the power to heal better and faster if we learn to focus our minds on positive, healthy and happy thoughts. Read More…
You can visit Dr. Rashidi’s website to learn more at https://www.mindinmedicine.com/.