The Fearless Mind by Dr. Craig L. Manning

Fearless Mind

The Dream

“No matter how impossible it all may seem . . .Never underestimate the power of a dream.” —Author unknown

How many people in this world really care how successful we become? How many people really care how happy we are? I don’t mean to sound negative, but really, how many? It is important to be honest with ourselves. This is our life; there is no time to waste with false modesty or humility. Our parents hopefully care. What about our grandparents? I believe they do. How about our siblings or friends? What about our coaches or teachers? Do they really care how happy we are?

This is an excerpt from The Fearless Mind by Dr. Craig L. Manning.

Many people want to see us do well, but they have their own responsibilities, their own lives to live, and their own dreams to fulfill. For the most part, they are not staying up late worrying about whether we win our tennis match or get into grad school. The reality is, no one can make our dreams come true for us. Although it seems many parents fight this battle at times, we have to do it for ourselves.

Internationally acclaimed spiritual teacher Marianne Williamson once said:

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, WHO am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small doesn’t serve the world. There’s nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we’re liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.1

Our dreams need to remain exactly that—ours. If we truly follow what we love and not what we like, what is safe and easy, or what someone else wants us to do, we will have more passion and energy; we will achieve higher levels of performance; and we will find greater joy. This passion for life will spill over onto those with whom we come in contact—our families, friends, and coworkers. I truly believe that if we have the fearlessness to follow our hearts, there is not much we cannot do. Those who don’t follow their hearts never find true happiness, for happiness cannot be given; we must find it for ourselves. 

This is an excerpt from The Fearless Mind by Dr. Craig L. Manning.

I coached a highly ranked senior tennis player (I will call her Elise) who had great skill sets and a tremendous knowledge of the game. Elise aspired to play tennis professionally after her college days. However, early in her senior year, she didn’t win a match and perceived it as a bad loss. She gave up on her aspirations to become a professional tennis player. From this point she struggled to win a match, constantly battling with herself. I have seen this happen several times. When we don’t have a clear objective or dream that is ours, all the skill and knowledge in the world will not help us.

Thomas Henry Huxley once wrote, “The great end of life is not knowledge but action.”2 I love this quote because to me it sums up the purpose of our existence. Our actions define us. At the “great end,” what do we want to look back on and remember—a fearless life really lived, or a fearful life? When all is said and done, we are responsible for what we did with the time that was given to us.

I worry about the time I have wasted, when I have allowed my mind to swim around in unproductive ways, because I haven’t always had the courage to chase my objectives. I now work to accelerate growth toward the objectives I have set for myself. It is a continuous journey that is becoming more enjoyable as the years pass. There have been objectives achieved along the way that have been celebrated for a time, but the journey continues. I am looking forward to the challenge of seeing what the future holds.

This is an excerpt from The Fearless Mind by Dr. Craig L. Manning.


1. Marianne Williamson, A Return to Love: Reflections on the Principles of “A Course in Miracles” (New York: HarperCollins, 1992), 165. 

2. Quoted in Anthony Robbins, Unlimited Power (New York: Fawcett Columbine, 1986), 3.