“What are your dreams?”
You’ve been asked it since you were a kid, right?
I start coaching sessions with a similar question:
“What do you want?”
Clear and simple. Or so you’d think.
But after so many awkward silences and blank stares, I’ve come to realize that articulating desire, envisioning dreams is something that comes much more naturally to a fourth grader.
By the time we hit our 20’s (or if we’re lucky, not til’ our 30’s) something happens. After years of working toward goals (achieving some, falling short of others), years piling on responsibility after responsibility, and years building a life influenced by our friends, family, co-workers, and every voice from Oprah’s to that of your local bank teller…
We often lose sight of our dreams… yes, we get lost in the day to day… but what’s worse is, we lose the ability to identify our dreams, even if we try! (Hence the awkward silences and blank stares).
Let’s test it out… what do you want? Can you identify your dreams? If you can, write them down. In crayon or colored pencils. For old times sake!
If you can’t, it’s ok. I struggled with this recently too. Read on…
Not long ago I spent a weekend listening to some of the most inspirational speakers and was determined to step it up in the “living my dream” department.
On my way home I sat and thought about my dream, the big picture for my life, ready to jot down a strategy… and nothing came to me.
All the thinking was actually starting to stress me out. And clearly not leading me closer to any “dream”.
Frustrated, I shoved the pen and paper back in my bag and sat, thoughtless.
Little did I know that was exactly what I needed. To stop thinking (for once), and to start feeling.
I realized my dreams didn’t have much to do with being in the perfect city, the perfect home, or the perfect job. They had much more to do with being, period. I dreamed of simply waking up and consistently feeling at home in my body, alive in my soul.
Maybe you share that same vision?
If so, your task is to simply feel out what brings you this good feeling, and add more of those things to your life.
And if you don’t know how to recognize this good feeling? Start by envisioning various activities, people, places, etc. And when you do, take note of:
** What makes you breathe deeply? (vs. what makes you hold your breathe)
** What makes your hands feel still and body feel grounded? (vs. shaky, scattered, restless)
** What makes you lose track of time? (in other words takes you out of your head and into your heart)
Maybe your dreams have to do with music, or candle light, or walking barefoot in the dirt…
Start a list.
This is a list of ingredients for your dream.
With it you can slowly piece together a bigger vision for your life.
So, will you do it? Will you take the pressure off, be still, and give yourself the time to dream?
Your inner fourth grader will be cheering you on and so will I.