“She is just an exchange student from South Africa,” a lot of people say. But there is more to me than just being here in the United States. I didn’t just wake up one morning and decide to leave my home country to come to America — it was my dream. A dream that I had since the earliest stage of my childhood. “One day, I will go to America,” I always told my family, friends, and even teachers; however, they didn’t believe I really would. I constantly reminded myself of my dream each and every day. I worked hard, and now here I am!
To me, life is like a sealed box filled with your dreams. It is not easy to get inside the box, but you have to keep trying because by unsealing the box, you will be able to live your dreams. Despite the challenges, I kept on pushing and believing in my dreams, and eventually unsealed the box. Now, I am living my dream, so if I can do it, you can, too. I am no different from anyone else when it comes to following your dreams; anyone can make them come true!
I do have some advice, however, that I will give to anyone who has a goal they want to seek.
- Be imaginative. It’s okay to dream big. Who cares if it sounds too crazy to some people? As long as it makes perfect sense to you, you should pursue it.
- Be confident. When you set up your dreams or really anything you wish to accomplish, don’t back down. Stay determined and be proud as you move towards your goal.
- Invest in your dream. Prioritize your goal and treat it like a bank account. The more you invest now, the more you will accumulate in the future.
- Be patient. Time will tell you which chapter of your destiny comes to play. Keep in mind that “patience is everything. Your dreams can be achieved, just not overnight” (Ashley Cooper).
- Have faith. The Bible says that we must walk by faith not by sight. Therefore, we don’t need something concrete to make us believe that our dreams are about to come true; it is up to us to believe in our dreams.
We all come from different families, backgrounds, religions, and beliefs. All these components reflect who we are today, as they play a tremendous role in influencing our lives.
As a teenage girl growing up in South Africa, I was raised with Christianity. My strongest weapon today in reaching my dreams is simply accepting God into my life, humbly kneeling down, and praying. Asking for His help and strength to keep pursuing my dreams has benefited me so much. I am not saying you have to believe in God to reach your goal, but having faith is important, whether it be faith in God, faith in others, or faith in yourself and your abilities.
Dreams are certainly not rights, they are privileges. And with the correct tools and mindset, you can set some goals and make your dreams come true, just like I did.