I asked my 4 year old son what he wanted to be when he grew up. What ensued was troubling decision of Dragon Trainer, Firefighter, a Chef in Daddy’s restaurant or a superhero……
but then we wouldn’t have time to play Lego.
So the final decision was to be a kid forever so we can play all the time.
This conversation was enlightening for a number of reasons.
1. Lego is damn important.
2. There are so many options of who and what we want to be.
3. When did I decide what I wanted to be?
4. What dreams do I have and what dreams have I forgotten?
5. Am I brave enough (or silly enough) to chase my dreams?
Kids dream of many things with not a whisper of doubt if they could actually do it.
Complete dream freedom! Imagine that!
As teenagers we dreamed of travelling the world, living in our first apartment, playing in the biggest stadium, finding our true love or being famous.
Young adults dream of owning their first home, running their own business, showcasing their work, succeeding in their career choice or having a family and being financially well-off.
I must confess that my dreams often look more like this.
1. Having a house cleaner
2. Having a family holiday.
3. Not drowning in the mummy guilt’s as I have heaps of time to spend with my son.
4. Someone will cook me dinner tonight.
5. The Laundry Fairy will come and take care of the 6 baskets on the laundry floor.
What the hell….. Major reality check here.
When and why do we stop dreaming big heart-stopping hell-yeah dreams?
We grow up and find Routine
There is almost a sense of resignation to lead a static wholesome life from a certain age. We fall into the cycle of days and nights comforted in the familiarity of routine. With routine we naturally become resistant to change or challenge.
Let go of all thoughts of limitations about how you should or should not behave based on how old you are. Age is nothing but a number, “an issue of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.” ~ Mark Twain
Mental Health Dream Thief
We may fall prone to feeling that we are unable to achieve the big dreams; a negative reality check from an unhealthy self-belief. If your mental health is not in a good place it is easy to convince yourself that big dreams are unobtainable or even undeserved. It is incredible how a depressive inner monologue can demotivate and diminish your hope and dreams.
Someone Else’s Dreams
There is a risk of getting caught up in the hype of someone else’s dream. We get side tracked to thinking that their dream is actually our own. Close relationships are susceptible to this, individuality is blurred and the life goals become that of the couple rather than the individual person. There can also be a sense of sacrifice, we give up chasing our dream so a loved one may achieve theirs.
“Always be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of somebody else.” ~ Judy Garland
Being time poor is the number one complaint of most people today. Between our work, social, financial and family commitments there is little time for dream chasing. Dreams are pushed to the frivolous time wasting basket as we deal with our serious day to day business.
The benefits of dreaming big and chasing the life you want.
So we know why our dreams are a little less than that of our younger selves. Obviously dreaming is fun; there are many reasons why we need to open our minds and hearts to dreaming again.
Drives you to a bigger better life – be challenged.
Chasing dreams is about living your life to the fullest – never settle for a life you don’t want.
Being proud of the way you lead and achieve in your life – have confidence.
Banish regret – a life not lived to its fullest is the biggest regret of all.
Motivation is at its peak when you are inspired – the ultimate feel good.
Gives you focus – dreams turn into goals and goals are there to be achieved.
Don’t settle for less than you are worth. Dare to dream big. “Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.” ~ Les Brown
How do we reset and begin to dream again?
Try this process (Keep pen and paper near buy so you can record your thoughts for future planning)
Limit technology and noise
Make time to sit in a quiet area with natural or no sounds. Make sure that you will be uninterrupted whilst going through this process. Be comfortable and relaxed.
Sit and Listen
Let your mind wander. Be open to all ideas that pop into your mind. Minimise any negative reactions such as possible challenges or limiting self-belief. Don’t hurry as you search your thoughts for inspiration.
Pay attention to your body sensation
Your body talks the truth. When you settle on certain dreams your body will tell you that this is the one. Heart rate may elevate, breath will quicken and even an urge to smile. Yes that is a dream you must chase
Act on it.
There is a time to dream and a time to dance.
(Ok so I like to channel a little Kevin Bacon a la Footloose here but you see what I am saying)
So to walk the talk here are a few of my big dreams that I am going for.
1. Work only for myself in the business I love.
2. Travel every continent with my son before he is 16.
3. Dive with sharks (the big scary teeth variety) and whale sharks.
4. Hold a conversation in Spanish.
5. Handstand Scorpion yoga pose
So if you want to change careers to become a Cake Designer, travel the world or meet Bono. Own your dreams and chase them. Be the person you dreamed of when you were 13 years old and have no regrets when your time comes.
Please share a few of your big dreams in the comments below.
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