This is part three of a four part series based on Mastering Purpose’s tag line: Live Your Values. Embrace Your Passions. Dream Big. Change the World.
Here we go.
What I mean by dream
When I say dream, I mean just what you think. Not dreaming at night – I mean sitting by yourself and letting your mind wonder to the perfect world. That place where you have everything you have ever wanted. The place where your job is your passion, your family life is as you imagine, and you have the few things that really mean the world to you.
So yes, I’m talking about the ‘corny,’ ‘childish’ nature of dreaming. I contend that we, as grown ups don’t dream often enough and as a result, we sell ourselves short. Way short. So, please start right now. What is one of your dreams?
Kids do it right
When is the last time you asked a kid what they wanted to be when they grew up? It’s been a while since I have, but we all know the typical answers. ‘I want to be a scientist.’ ‘I want to be an astronaut.’ ‘I want to be a firefighter.’ ‘I want to be a professional athlete.’ ‘I want to be a doctor.’
Forget the fact that less than 1% of all child athletes go pro. Who cares that they just shut down NASA’s manned space missions. Firefighting’s dangerous? And?
Maybe all of our dreams as kids aren’t what we end up dreaming of when we our true to ourselves as adults. That doesn’t change my point. Kids dream recklessly because they don’t think about all of the possibilities of failure along the way. But you know what? Kids do it right, in my opinion.
Why this might be the most important thing you ever do
Dreaming might be the single most important thing we ever do. Why? Because dreaming answers the question: “What would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?” (Attributed to an unknown author.)
When we dream we are at our best. We are reverting to our core purpose and most fundamental desires… In a good way. Somewhere along the way someone decided that it wasn’t ‘grown up’ to dream. Life is tough, get a helmet, right?
Yes, you might need a helmet, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t chase every dream you’ve had since you were a tot.
I’ve got news: the most mature and world-changing thing we can do in this moment is to dream big dreams. Dream of changing the worlds most pressing problems. Dream of living the life you have imagined. Dream of having a family, of traveling the world, of curing cancer, of being in the circus, or whatever it is that you dream about. PLEASE.
Why? Because the world needs us to pursue your dreams in a passionate way based on a set of values that you hold dear. Sound familiar?
How to dream… and work towards it
Start with the question I mentioned above: “What would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?” Honestly, what would you attempt?
If you could have any superpower, what would it be? (Just want to get the creative juices flowing.)
If resources were not a barrier, what would you do?
If you could get a paycheck no matter what it is you dream of, what would you try?
When you were little, what did you tell everyone you were going to be when you grew up?
I would LOVE to hear some of your answers in the comments section below.
Ok, we’ve got our answers. Now, to put them to work. Grab a sheet of paper… Or a napkin, or a business card, whatever. Anything you can write on. The bigger, the better, but anything will do.
Write your dream(s) in the middle. From each dream, I want you to draw a line to a way you could pursue that dream if you knew you could not fail. What jobs would allow you to pursue your dreams? Could you work for someone else? Could you start a company? Could you do it in your spare time? Could you take a vacation or sabbatical and work towards your dreams?
Now, here’s the practical part. Let’s make some goals. Start with a goal for today. Now, in one month how will you have worked towards your dreams? 6 months? 1 year? 5 years? 10 years? At the end of your life, what does it look like?
Pursuing our dreams is just a matter of starting…
Your dreams vs someone else’s dreams
This is so important. To truly get to the bottom of our dreams, we have to be true to our inner child, our inner creative, our heart of hearts, our dreamer mind.
What we can’t do is, in our own company, impose the expectations of everyone in our lives on ourselves. I know Mom and Dad want one thing. I know the grandparents have grand expectations. I know friends think of us as ‘that person.’
THIS IS NOT THEIR LIFE OR THEIR DREAMS. And if we can pursue our dreams, at the end of time, we can sit around and laugh with everyone about how dumb it sounded at first, but how incredibly thankful we are that we were true to ourselves.
So please, let us be true to ourselves when we think of our dreams. After all, we only get one shot, and to waste it by pursuing someone else’s dreams… That would be a tragedy.
So this means you’re ready to change the world.