What-is & Wanted vs. Unwanted: dreams

It hurts my heart when someone says dreams are impractical. Hurts my head and soul too.

And I do hear it. At least a couple times a month. Sometimes more.

I’ve heard it from clients, workshop attendees, the woman doing my nails, the man seated next to me on the plane.

This bleak mindset sometimes comes up randomly in conversation. Other times it’s me having asked, What are your hopes and dreams?

By the way, if “dreams” isn’t your favorite word, feel free to substitute one you like better: aim, ambition, aspiration, desire, goal, hope, intention, objective, wish, yearning… They’re all equally juicy words for life’s juiciest pursuits.

So back to dreams being impractical.

When someone says that, what do they mean?

Dreams are unrealistic to achieve? Impossible to realize? Not sensible to entertain?

Digging a little deeper, I hear dreams are impractical because…

  • I have a mortgage
  • I have kids
  • I don’t have a nest egg
  • My network is too small
  • You can’t make a living at it
  • I don’t know how to get from Point A to Point B
  • I’m too old
  • I don’t have the right degree
  • I can’t take time away from my family
  • It would involve too much change

What’s fascinating is the full stop when someone tells me their dreams are impractical and why.

  •  My heart’s desire isn’t possible because I don’t have the kind of network it would take.
  • What I really want to do is impractical because I have a mortgage.
  • I’ve given up on my true calling because I just don’t know how to get from Point A to Point B.

After each of these statements is a period. End of sentence, end of story. There is no further discussion.

But what if…

I long to turn all of these facts on their head. Not to prove the person wrong, but to explore possibility.

  • What if the fact of a mortgage isn’t the end of the sentence or the story?
  • What if not knowing how to get from Point A to Point B is just the start of a brainstorming session to figure it out?
  • What if a limited network is how things stand today but not how they’re destined to be tomorrow?

What you believe matters.

Know this: Mindset either opens you up to or cuts you off from possibility. If you believe dreams are impractical and unrealistic, then they are. Period. Full stop. End of story.

If, on the other hand, you believe dreams are your birthright and act as a sort of GPS for the life you’re meant to live, then a whole world of possibility opens and expands with opportunity. Including the opportunity to focus on what is possible, instead of what isn’t.

Will you embrace the practicality of your hopes and dreams? How can you make your dreams feasible and viable? How can you increase the odds of your dreams becoming reality? 

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