Some people need guidance. Others desperately need a dose of reality. Still others just need a swift kick in a rear.
I just needed someone to believe in me.
It’s hard to wander off the beaten path, to build something of one’s own. But it’s even harder without support. When it came time to start The Desert Lynx back in 2011, no one believed in me. I didn’t even believe in myself. I just knew I had to do it, so I plunged into the deep, dark, unfamiliar world of online writing and punditry all by my little old self.
But I kept it on the back burner, never believing in it enough to make it a centerpiece project. For years I wasted my time on other pursuits, all because I dismissed my goals and dreams as unrealistic. Had someone believed in me and in my ability to strike out on my own, there’s no telling what might have been.
Now, after quiet perseverence, The Desert Lynx has grown. It has several contributors, and its work has been published in numerous outlets, reaching thousands. And we’re just getting started. Now, the truth has become apparent that I wish I had known all along: I can do this.
So as I finally push onward with my destiny, I can’t help but think of how much self-doubt, how much wasted time, how many missed opportunities could have been avoided if only I had heard four little life-changing words: “I believe in you.”
The lesson to be learned? Support the dreamers. Believe in them. Even if you’re wrong. It’s far less tragic to believe in someone unworthy than to fail to be that key person responsible for making something incredible happen. I, for one, will always believe in the passions and abilities of those dear to me. Even if I end up being wrong.
Dream on, my friends, dream on. Then make it happen. I’ve got your back. I believe in you.
Joël Valenzuela is the editor of The Desert Lynx