“The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.” – Aristotle

Think about what makes you… you.

Your brain is more than six pounds of gray matter; it’s the cranial hub for billions of neural pathways and firing synapses exploding into muscular actions and reactions, thoughts, memories, and even dreams. The difference between brain and mind can be paper-thin and yet, it can also be worlds apart.

Your heart is more than a blood pumping muscle; it’s the bedrock of your emotions. You give your heart away in love, but that never refers to your actual muscular heart. Your heart is wild which is why your ribs are a cage. Some of the smartest, most accomplished people in the world have made daring, courageous, and sometimes stupid decisions because they were following their heart.

Your stomach is where your body stores and processes food, but it’s also where your instincts live. It’s what goes haywire when you’re uncomfortable, nervous, and afraid. So much of who you are is grounded in the connection between your amygdala in your brain and your chemical instincts in your stomach. Sometimes it’s innate but inarticulate to the point where we use words like, “I just have a gut feeling about this.”

The integration of you - writetojoncook Jon Cook

How your body responds to risks, failure, and challenges

It’s in these three areas, our mind, our heart, and our gut, that we ignite our dreams. You may want to go back to school, which is what your heart wants to do, but your mind plays logic and reason as saboteurs. “You’re too old,” “You didn’t do well in school the first time, why now?” “It’s too much work,” “There’s no guarantee you’ll have a job ready when you graduate.”

You may be wanting to start your own business. This isn’t some random idea; it’s been burning a hole in your gut for years and now you’re wanting to make the leap. What does your gut tell you? What does your heart say? What is your mind trying to convince you to do?

When it comes to chasing your dreams, your mind, your heart, and your gut are all essential to your success. Trust your gut, even when it seems impossible. Listen to your heart, especially when you’re tempted to compromise or take a shortcut. Train your brain to feed on hope and opportunity, not objection and anxiety.

Leverage these three powers and your dreams will thrive. Lose touch with any of these and your dreams will be short-lived. May you use these God-given abilities to listen, learn, and follow how He leads you to pursue extraordinary opportunities ahead.