Many years ago, the great Harriet Tubman, in an era much different than ours, said, Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Those words are simple, yet very profound. Why? Because so many people have stopped dreaming big dreams. When people stop dreaming, they lose their connection to a vital source of energy.
Are you one of those people? Have you stopped dreaming? Have your aspirations for your life withered? If so, the good news is it’s never too late to dream again!
Here are three reasons dreams die and what you can do about it.
Our Dreams are Ridiculed
In the Holy Bible, the book of Psalms opens with a description of two types of people in life: those who are “like trees planted by streams of water” and those who “sit in the seat of scoffers”. A scoffer is a person who expresses scorn, derision or contempt for the well-being or dreams of others. It’s the Bible’s term for ‘hater’. There are scoffers all around us; people who will deride your dreams and what you stand for. Scoffers will laugh at you. They may not come right out and mock your dreams, but in subtle ways they hold you in contempt.
Know who the scoffers are but don’t use haters as motivation. Sometimes the scoffers are in your own household. Just be the best you can be. Nurture the greatness in you. Focus on the good you offer to the world. When you take on this attitude, it becomes its own vindication. Frank Sinatra once said, Success is the best revenge.
We Accept our Assigned Dreams
Your ‘assigned dream’ is the dream someone gave you or had for you. Those people usually include our parents, family and friends. They may have had good intentions, but assigned dreams usually end up becoming assigned prisons. Too often we live under the shadow of other people’s expectations; we become more concerned with what they want for our lives than what we want for ourselves.
Determine what you want for your life and get after it. Live your life on your terms for the good of others, not at the whim of others. Often, this requires a certain type of reinvention – but you have to be unafraid to remake yourself. The benefits of reinvention, though, are immeasurable. Remember the attitude of Walt Disney, when he said, If you can dream it, you can do it!
We Lose Our Dreams in the Fog of Life.
“What happens to a dream deferred? Does it dry up? Like a raisin in the sun? Langston Hughes’ poetic question is as relevant today as it was during the Harlem Renaissance, when he penned it. Many of us have put our dreams on hold, whether for our children, career advancement or just out of pure apathy. We become so engrossed in earning money and material pursuit that we lose touch with what wanted from the beginning. Our dreams then become lost in oblivion.
You’ve deferred your dreams long enough. You were not born to merely raise kids and die. Refocus your energy. Reconnect to the dream of entrepreneurship you once nurtured. Dust the cobwebs from that book you dreamed of writing, that stage play you wanted to produce. Stay focused. Keep dreaming. Most importantly, nurture your dreams. This prevents them from becoming lost in the rat race. Dream again and remember the words of Dawn Markova, I will not die an unlived life. I choose to inhabit my days, to allow my living to open me, to make me less afraid.
It’s never too late to dream again!
W. Eric Croomes is a Holistic Lifestyle Exercise Expert and Author of Life’s a Gym: Seven Fitness Principles to Get the Best of Both (LAG).
Visit Eric and download LAG at www.infinitestrategiescoaching.com