Who Else Will Benefit From You Following Your Dreams?
I truly believe in the power of our dreams.
Our dreams (our aspirations and desires) are here to show us the light. They are like the lighthouse on our way. Most of the time, we do not dream about random things. Most often we dream about things that somehow matter to us – either it is about following our passions or following our values and beliefs. And when we follow our passions and our beliefs, we are certainly going in the direction of becoming the best versions of ourselves. And when we become the best version of ourselves, we will have more energy and power to contribute to the world around us.
Of course, at this moment, during these difficult uncertain times, in the midst of unrolling war, it might feel as if you should stop being selfish and stop dreaming, but I truly believe the opposite is true. Exactly during these uncertain times our dreams, and showing up with determination, has the most value. It is our deepest values, beliefs and vision that will fuel the actions needed to keep building the kind of world we want to live in. We really have to keep dreaming and hoping that better days come and goodness wins. We have to stay strong and keep going, so that we can be source of inspiration, empowerment, help and resources for the ones who most need it.
“Continue hoping/living/loving/trying. The most human thing we can do at any given time is dare to believe beyond disaster.” (Amanda Gorman)
Dreams come in every shape and size. I believe we all are filled with hopes and dreams - small and simple, big and scary. Some of the dreams have concrete shape and form, others are like an abstract cloud in our mind. I do not think there are better or bigger dreams. There are just different dreams. Some people dream of a big career, other people dream of building a home or a vegetable garden. Some people dream of learning to speak French, when other people desire to climb the Mount Everest. All dreams are valid. All dreams matter.
I have always liked to dream. When I was little, I dreamed of many things, probably lying on the grass watching clouds, or telling my dog how I feel and what I hope for, or writing something down in my journal. This was my way of escaping from the ordinary mess of an household with an alcoholic parent. I remember myself dreaming of becoming an actor. And a writer. And then I wanted to be a lawyer like the ones in American movies. And then at some point I was a grownup university student going to do Erasmus abroad and suddenly I started dreaming of travelling. After meeting my husband, I dreamed of a big white dress, a dog, 3 kids, lots of sushi and travelling. When starting our hospitality business, I started having all kinds of small and big business dreams. And somewhere in the middle I dreamt of completing a PhD, building a home, and becoming a Coach. But in between these bigger things, I have had many tiny dreams on the way – books I want to read, courses I want to take, the experiences I want to live, the living room with a fireplace and so on.. And well currently there is a great deal of dreams in the making! From the kind of mom I would like to become and the kind of impact I would like to make as a Coach, to learning to cook beautiful delicious vegetarian dishes (the last one might make everybody around me laugh because I would be the last person they ever remember when it comes to cooking, and well I am not also vegetarian.. not yet.).
My friends sometimes say that they do not have dreams. Clearly, I am always just a little bit suspicious of these conversations because something tells me that maybe, just maybe, they are laying low, either they are afraid of the word “dream” or they choose the comfortable over scary. Of course, I totally understand, firstly I certainly overuse the word “dream”, while they underuse it. And secondly, to declare (to yourself) that you have a dream, means that you must do something or to be something. And to do something and be something, you might have to change something. And to change something, might mean that you must step out of the safe and comfy parts of yourself and your life. Well, you see, a full range of consequences right there!
Said all that, fear of dreaming is a real thing. Not everybody has a vision for their life or stops to ask themselves “what do I really want?” And sometimes people just choose to play safe and limit themselves, relaying on diferente limiting beliefs like:
I do not have dreams. I do not know what I want. It is not possible for me. I am too young/old. I am not enough/smart enough/pretty enough. I am not capable.
All this sounds even to myself somehow familiar and relatable, somehow comfortable. And staying in our comfort zone is safe. However, is it safe not to listen to our inner voice? Is it safe to deny ourselves pursuing our deepest desires?
My answer to this is "no, no this is not safe". Sooner or later there will be consequences, you might feel that something is missing from your life or you might not even understand why you are not fully happy. You might arrive to the end of your days with regret and with a question “what if.. “.
And of course it is also sad, because the world will not have the chance to see you living your life to the fullest. The world might not have the opportunity to benefit from your overflow - from all of your gifts and talents and bliss. And this matters too. This matters a lot. As a coach I would always ask you about this. I would ask you how achieving your goals/dreams/vision positively impacts others around you and other áreas of your life. I would ask from you "who else will benefit from you following through?" What is that greater impact you would/could make?
Said all that, I do not mean that every single dream is to be pursued. I do not mean that you will be miserable if you do not dream (out loud) or go after all your dreams, I simply say that some of your dreams are definitely worth to be followed and they can impact positively not only yourself, but the world in general. The whole world is built up as a result dreams of people, we have come that far because somebody has courageously take a step forward.
Next time when you feel like playing safe, ask yourself “Who else will benefit from me committing to this dream?” And then go take action!
.. Of course, it would be only fair now if I ask myself “who else will benefit from me becoming that master chef of beautiful, delicious and healthy vegetarian dishes?”