12-12-12 – seems like a great day to talk about dreams. A date like this won’t happen until 01-01-2101. One can hope I will make it to that date, but I won’t hold my breath (as that will decrease my odds!).
Also in respect to timing, my very favorite Broadway show, Les Miserables, is coming to the movie theater for the first time (because that Liam Neeson version shouldn’t even count, no offense). I think on the lyrics of “I Dreamed a Dream” and find this one sentence very fitting to how many of us have felt or feel about dreaming: “Now life has killed the dream I dreamed.”
Have you ever had a dream?
I think it is safe to say that everyone has – at least one in their lifetime. More often than not, we are taught as children to dream big. In fact, I think we have an innate curiosity of our own personal potential and then we are encouraged to be imaginative and told we can be anything we want to be if we work hard for it. And then, at some point, we grow up and people tell us to be realistic.
Some of us are immune to others’ thoughts and opinions. But many of us are influenced by them; we become shy to visualize anything more than what we have, and when we do, we dream small, very achievable “dreams.” And there are a number of people who instead become pessimistic and closed off, who no longer fear of dreams dying because there was a decision (perhaps subconscious) that if there is no dream then it then it won’t shatter or die.
It’s not selfish nor irresponsible to dream.
As we grow older, I also think that sometimes we feel that it is selfish to want more for ourselves, to be anything but gracious and appreciative of what we have. It is true, that grace and appreciation are incredibly important, and arguably more important than dreams. But if you think about it, your big dreams can also fill needs that others have; someone else might need your dream to turn into a reality.
Feet on the ground, heart in the sky.
So we need more people to have their feet firmly planted on the ground while their hearts are high in the sky where dreams are born. Some of the best things we all enjoy in life, things we often take for granted, came about because of someone’s dream or a cultivation of multiple people’s dreams. A world without dreams is much like a world without hope.
What is life without a dream?
It’s a daily grind. It’s dreading Monday. It’s no light at the end of the tunnel. It’s not wanting to get out of bed to start the day. Something as simple as a dream can make you want to pop out of bed on a Monday morning and start your week with earnest. It can give you a light at the end of the tunnel on a very dark week. Without losing appreciation for what you have, it can give you a glimpse of what it is like to be able to have or to give more than you have or give today.
What is your dream today for tomorrow?
Do you have one now? If not, why not? Have you lost the ability to dream somewhere in between Reality and Life Happens? If so, I think that is pretty normal. It is not uncommon to get stuck between that rock and hard place on the path to achieving a dream. And sometimes, when we are stuck there, we lose sight of the dream or stop dreaming altogether. I know I did. And it was only recently, within the past year and a half, that I learned how to start dreaming again.
So how does one learn to dream again?
I’ve actually got a few thoughts on this, which will surface into more than one post, but I will start with my opinion of the bare necessities in my next post: “How to Dream Again.”
“Dreams are illustrations… from the book your soul is writing about you.” ~Marsha Norman
“Keep your heart open to dreams. For as long as there’s a dream, there is hope, and as long as there is hope, there is joy in living.” ~Anonymous