My dream was to play the piano like Nicky Hopkins. I started lessons in junior high school even paying the $6.50 fee to my piano teacher out of my baby-sitting money. I practiced a few times a week on the old piano in our garage but I never got beyond beginners status. After my divorce I made the decision to once again take up lessons and learn to play the piano. I purchased a black gloss upright piano, hired a teacher and practiced whenever my schedule allowed. Again, I didn't make much headway.
During the 10 years I owned that piano I moved it four times. Do you know the cost of moving a piano up and down stairs? When I moved it out of state and up and down stairs it was even more money. Finally I had to admit two things. I wasn't willing to work as hard as I needed to work to master the piano and I was spending a whole lot of money on a daydream I wasn't willing to dedicate time to realize. I found a good home for my piano and let go of the fantasy.
Surprisingly I was not sad or melancholy about my decision. Letting go allowed me to direct my talents and resources in another, more productive direction. William Shakespeare's line from Hamlet, "This above all: to thine own self be true" is often quoted but before you can be true to yourself, you must know thyself. Sometimes that means taking a hard look at what your actions say about your dedication to a plan. The Fourth Quarter is the time to shed the illusion and embrace your talents and desires. Where are you willing to spend your time? What dreams do you want to truly realize by dedicating time and money to them? What 800-pound piano are you lugging around?