“The best way to make your dreams come true is to wake up.”
– Paul Valery
When I mention dreams, I mean specifically the type that we have for our future. I’m referring to the sort which dictate life goals and ambitions. Of course, you may find these are also the same that you dream every night, but that’s not my meaning here.
Dreams are a wonderfully dangerous thing. We all have things which we wish to accomplish, and we all have a choice in how we react to them. A dream in and of itself has little meaning. A plan without action is useless, but having a dream doesn’t even imply having a plan at all – just a desired outcome.
Where to From Here?
I feel I should clarify my intentions further. I said that dreams are a wonderfully dangerous thing – and I meant it. The thing is, having a dream creates an end goal which in and of itself may not be grounded in reality. There’s no rule anywhere saying that your ambitions have to be realistic, and it’s very easy to be lost in fantasy. Instead of having a simple, passionate pursuit, have a plan. Make achievable goals and do your homework.
The first step in anything is having a target to aim at. From here, it’s up to you to create a series of actionable goals. Life will never hand you anything just because you really want it. In fact, I think any easy analogy is to imagine yourself as a child under life’s watchful eye. If you’ve ever seen a child throw a temper-tantrum over a toy they “really, really” want to have, you know what a disastrous scene it can be. Just giving the toy to the child is no guarantee of anything, either.
When dealing with a child’s mentality, you have no assurance that they truly know what they want. Most children don’t spend a lot of time considering their desires. What’s really unfortunate is that many of us as adults tend to behave in a similar manner.
The key here is maturity. All of us must have the courage to be realistic about the things we pursue. It’s not always easy to recognize that the thing you most want simply isn’t feasible, but it can save a lot of suffering. With that said, I certainly don’t mean to discourage anyone from attempting anything. Just because I am emphasizing being realistic doesn’t mean don’t try. I am suggesting, however, that you take the time to evaluate the viability of your hopes – and then take action.
If the things you most want in life are reasonable and attainable, then you must run without abandon. Never let those around you who are less ambitious cause you to lose your own courage to dare. Many great people had a vision for the possible while it was still considered the impossible. In truth, history may remember these men and women more so than any others.
Thank you for your time.