Give Yourself Permission to Soar by Diana Scimone

Give Yourself Permission to Soar
by Diana Scimone

In 2001,  I took the photo that changed my life. My passion is not just to stop child trafficking, but to empower teens who want to stop the traffic but don’t know where to begin.

When I talk to youth about trafficking, they’re already very aware and even know people who are being trafficked. They want to get involved in the fight to stop the traffic, but don’t know where or how to plug in.

So I’m partnering with MissHeardMedia to help you find out exactly how to do that—not just to stop human trafficking but whatever issue of injustice keeps you up at night.

And it all begins with finding out what you already like to do and are good at doing—and also what you don’t like to do, because that’s important to know, too. And it’s all right to admit that! (Hey, I don’t like math and it’s okay.)

As you start identifying who you are and who God created you to be, it’s exciting because you get to learn more about yourself (and like yourself in the process). Plus those are the skills and talents you can use to make a difference in the world.

So I’ve got 2 fun activities for you to do from my book Audacious—and I promise they really will be fun because they’re all about YOU. There are no right or wrong answers. I just want you to focus on you for a little bit so that we can uncover who you are—and then later use those wonderful attributes to help you find solutions to life’s biggest issues.

10 things you’ve always wanted to do

Write down ten things you’ve always wanted to do. They don’t have to be related to justice or child trafficking. Don’t think too hard about it. My goal here is to unlock your creativity so don’t think too much about it and don’t let the self-critic edit your list. Just write whatever comes to mind:


  1. _________________________________________________________________
  2. _________________________________________________________________
  3. _________________________________________________________________
  4. _________________________________________________________________
  5. _________________________________________________________________
  6. _________________________________________________________________
  7. _________________________________________________________________
  8. _________________________________________________________________
  9. _________________________________________________________________

Which one surprised you? Why?

What do these tell you about you?

What do they tell you about what you like to do?

About what you really don’t like to do? (And remember that’s okay to admit.)

Feel free to share your “10 things” with the rest of us in a comment below.

What would you do if money were no object?

I want you to dream big. Really really big. I’m not talking about child trafficking or any injustice. I’m talking about you. What would you do if money were no object? What would you do if you could do anything, go anywhere, be anyone? Tell me your dream. It doesn’t have to involve stopping child trafficking—or any injustice.

Here’s my big dream:

“I’d have a farmhouse in Tuscany within driving distance of Florence. I’d have a private plane with a private pilot so that I could fly there from the U.S. every weekend. (Or maybe I’d invent time travel so I won’t have to sit on a plane to get there.) I’d spend a lot of time sitting in the garden, watching the sunflowers and lavender grow. (I’d tend some flowers myself, but I’d have a gardener.) My farmhouse would be close enough to a village so that I could walk there and buy a loaf of crusty bread and come home and sit on my terrace overlooking the countryside while I ate sharp cheese and crinkly black olives all day and listened to Vivaldi and Puccini. My farmhouse would be close enough to Florence so that I could drop in to the Uffizi and inhale the beauty of Botticellis. And walk along the Arno as the sun set over Tuscany.”

You’ll notice that dream has absolutely nothing to do with child trafficking. It’s a Diana dream and something I’d love to do that would give me joy.

What about you? What would you do if money were no object:

Describe it: ___________________________________________________________

Draw a picture of it.

What music on your playlist goes along with it? _______________________________

What colors describe it? _________________________________________________

What photos of it would you Instagram? _____________________________________

What emotion do you feel when you think about this? Create an emoticon for it.


What food or dish best captures it? _________________________________________

What does this tell you about yourself? ______________________________________

What does it tell you that you love to do? ____________________________________

That you don’t like to do? _________________________________________________

That gives you joy? _____________________________________________________

That bores you? ________________________________________________________

What does my dream tell you about me? It shows you that I love to travel, I love adventure, I love food, and I love a base to call home. (I just realized that last one as I’m writing this.) Do you think God made me that way for a reason? What are you learning about yourself and how God made you?

Now, let’s look at that issue of injustice on your heart—yes, the one that keeps you up at night. The one you’d give anything in the world to fix. Can you take some of the things you already like to do and use them to dream big about solving that issue?

Just think about that for the next week or so. Just you and you. You don’t need to tell anyone yet. In fact, it’s better not to just yet. And don’t edit your dream. Dreams don’t come with delete keys or erasers. Just give yourself permission to dream big.

Diana Scimone is president of the Born2Fly Project to stop child trafficking.

Creativity exercises excerpted from Audacious: The bold, brave, brazen plan to shut down the global child sex industry, © 2013 by Diana Scimone (Peapod Publishing, Inc.). Used with permission.

Related Reading

The Photo that Changed my Life by Diana Scimone

Video: The Awesomeness of Vision Boards

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