Chasing Big Dreams Is Easy, The True Challenge Is Coming Up With One
I love sharing ideas about big dreams.
And a lot of these ideas come to me when commuting somewhere. Well, today I thought of something that gets in the way of a lot of our big dreams. While driving to meet a client it popped in my head:
Most people don’t get what they want because they don’t know what they want.
I’ve had this powerful realization over the last few years
As a traditionally trained educator who loves productivity, planning, and practice this was difficult for me to understand.
When trying to help people achieve goals, we do a lot of things that don’t actually matter.
Many of the things parents, teachers, and counselors think are important just aren’t that important. If we do too many of these unimportant things, people are going to “hate goalsetting”.
No amount of filling in a worksheet on “next steps” or forcing someone to “journal” is going to lead them to feel fueled by their big dream.
Unless they truly, madly, deeply know what that dream is.
This Is Why People Are Sick Of “GoalSetting”
Over the last fifteen years, I’ve worked with many teens to help them come up with a pathway in life.
Usually, this means helping them start a youtube channel, e-commerce store, podcast, or any of the many other modern, creator economy gigs that their favorite influencers do.
Working with youth to learn the elements of entrepreneurship and social media over the last few years has made me realize just how overused the topic of goal setting is.
Teens, but also adults, cause adults are just kids who got older often share that goal setting is the last thing they want to talk about.
Almost every time I sit down to plan life goals with someone they have the same reaction. “I’m super sick of hearing about goals.”
Forget The Action Steps For Now
Action and Vision are both really important to achieve our goals.
But, we often get them backward.
Vision must come first. Once we have a clear vision, then we can put the actions in place.
You see, there are so many plans we could come up with.
I’m going to post a video every day. I will exercise every morning. I will sleep 9 hours per night. The intentions we could make are endless. There are many habits we can do to help achieve our big dreams.
But those are easy to come up with. Very easy.
If you know your goal.
If you know your dream.
And this goal, this dream, is as unique as our DNA.
Actually, it’s a bit more unique than our DNA, because it changes, sometimes slowly, other times rapidly. But it changes over time. If we don’t know our dream, then the greatest plan is worthless.
When it comes to the idea of chasing big dreams, we waste way too much energy trying to figure out how?
We search and search and search for the playbook, or cheat codes. Or worse, we spend way too much time wondering “when will we get there?”
I’ll never forget when I was chatting with Maya Wieder, one of the greatest Dream Coaches of all time about this topic, she said, “Promise me you won’t worry about how until that reveals itself to you. Just focus on what and why for now.”
That was powerful advice that I will always cherish.
While actions, habits, and results are cool, they are actually the easy aspects of pursuing goals. The true challenge is figuring out what the dream is.
So, What Does Matter?
Clarity of the dream itself is the key.
What do YOU want?
That’s what truly matters.
But, in case you’re at risk of using an obvious excuse like “my goals will change”. I know. That is true. And that is fine. At any given moment, it may be worthwhile regaining clarity. Sometimes clarity lasts for a few weeks and sometimes it lasts for ten years.
But the question remains, are you clear on what you currently want?
How To Get Clarity Of YOUR Big Dream
K, here is the super annoying thing, and I apologize because I know it can be frustrating.
How to figure this out is up to you. There is no one way that works for everyone.
But, I have some good news.
I can give you a few different examples and prompts that can help you figure this out.
You don’t have to use any of these. Whatever works for you to get clarity of your dream is fine. But you do have to use something explicit and you do have to come up with a clear current vision.
Seek Outside Inspiration
Dreaming big ultimately is an inside job. But, there is no shame in getting help from the outside when it comes to clarity over your dream. In fact, it’s extremely valuable.
Other people can often give us a new, helpful perspective. Find someone who will help you work through this problem. It could be a formal coach or a trusted mentor.
Resources can be helpful too. Go in search of blogs, vlogs, podcasts, or books that help you gain clarity. You may benefit just as well from reading a great book like Dream Big, or The Big Leap.
Finally, experiences can have a huge impact on our ability to dream. It can be as simple as joining a local book club, art night, or golf group. Or it could be as intense as forking over ten grand to go on a creator’s retreat halfway around the world. Either way, interrupting your routines and getting out to meet new people will spark energy that helps with clarity.
Journal Your Purpose
Take some time to find inspiration in your own thoughts or other people’s work about purpose and meaning. Write down what you like in life, and what you don’t like. Write down your values and motivations.
Create a list of things that you would love to try or goals you could accomplish that fuel this purpose. Now, see if you can turn that list into one, or two bigger priorities.
Reflect On The Alive 5 Questions
What inspiration can you take from the problems, or opportunities in the world around you?
What does your gut feeling say about your current vision and possible future ideas?
What does your common sense brain say about the different paths you could take?
What do other people create, or say that gets you thinking?
Are you living with vitality? Do you feel intrinsic, self-motivation toward your current vision?
Actions will become important, but not yet.
Obviously, the more things that we do that are not in line with our dreams, the less likely we are to achieve them.
Therefore, in order to hit the target we must first define it.
Thanks for reading. Your pal,