A dream is a deep yearning, something we are passionate about, a calling, far more than a mere want or desire, and yet very few people actually strive for their dreams, or give up way too easily. Many sacrifice their dreams on the altar of base “survival,” whereas they settle for “getting by,” more so than genuinely living or striving for greatness. This is the curse many individuals have succumbed to in their day-to-day lives, and it has often left people feeling unfulfilled, depressed, and as if life is passing them by.
Others will half-heartedly try, they will want something grandiose and yet not put grandiose effort into manifesting it, giving up due to their own half-assing the attempt. This is worse than not trying at all, as it is self-defeating and depletes the will to do much more than live and die. So, how do we reach for our dreams effectively and accomplish what we truly want to accomplish? Strategy, planning, goals, and work!
Firstly, this piece assumes that you know what your dreams are, what you want, and that you can envision life having achieved that dream in your head. If this is not the case, close your eyes and see in as much clarity as possible, that you have achieved your dreams, and try to feel what you would feel if you had. If you cannot even imagine in your mind’s eye that you could achieve your dreams, you cannot, so try your hardest to do so.
Now get out a sheet of paper and write your dream/primary end goal on the top of it, and get ready to do a little research. Next, find out the steps needed to achieve that dream, and go into as much detail as humanly possible in regards to what is necessary to see that dream to reality. Once you know the steps to achieve it, break those steps down into a series of goals leading from where you currently are, to where you want to be. Apply the S.M.A.R.T. goals principle to those goals now, specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time-bound.
- Specific – Be as specific as possible in regards to the goal. Don’t say I need more visitors, set a goal of how many visitors and how long you give yourself to see it to fruition.
- Measurable – Make sure you can measure the achievement of the goal through real-world data. The growth towards completing the goal should be able to be measured and monitored to make sure you’re consistently moving forward.
- Attainable – Goals leading to your dream should rightfully be challenging, but they should be able to be attained. If a goal is impossible, it’s a pipe-dream and the whole thing goes up in smoke.
- Realistic – Goals should be realistic and you should be realistic with yourself. At thirty you’re never going to win the all-valley under eighteen karate championship, but you might be able to still compete in your own age bracket. (pro tip; Wax on, wax off)
- Time-bound – Give yourself a reasonable deadline for the completion of the goal. There is no someday, there is no “in the future,” give an actual date and try to stay within it. If you finish sooner, great, if you finish a little past great, but set the timeline for completion!
Once you have your list of goals completed, think of something you can do within the next fifteen minutes to lend towards a goal. Hillel the Elder famously said, “If not us, then who? If not now, then when?” which basically translates to not waiting for others and to take action now, as in right now. If you can take a step right now, no matter how small toward achieving a goal leading to your dream, then do it, think hard on this one because it might be the fuel to get the fire burning.
Once you start the ball rolling, it begins building a head of steam and before you know it, you’re on your way to achieving your dreams and aims in life. The trick it to maintain momentum, and a great way to do this is to keep envisioning yourself when you have attained you goals and dreams already, make it vivid, and feel the emotions you’d feel.