“Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” — Howard Thurman.
This area is for people who are living, or dream of living, an extraordinary life of their dreams. Whether you’re an artistic person (like I am), or dream of having your own business, or even want to run marathons — this is the place openness, optimism, and a belief that hard work can move mountains. If you ever felt like the ‘regular’ world doesn’t get you or believe your goals are possible, forget them and come be inspired with us.
How to Start Living Your Dreams
- Start seeing yourself as the person of your dreams. In any way you can, start acting, talking, and living like the ‘dream’ version of yourself. Larry Winget (awesome motivator!) talks about when he got a WINNER license plate for his car. Suddenly, everything changed. He couldn’t cut someone off in traffic (that’s not what a WINNER would do!). He couldn’t have a dirty car. He was a WINNER. Carry a little notebook and paper with you if it helps you see yourself as a writer, artist, or designer. Get business cards (I recommend ‘Moo.com’ if you can afford it) with your dream title on them. Start a free WordPress.com page for your ‘dream job’. And when people ask you what you do, lead with the dream, the passion, not the ‘day job’.
- Lists, lists, lists. I’m a big fan of writing down your goals, then breaking those goals into individual, manageable pieces, and doing things every day or every week that make your dreams a reality. You’d be surprised how much action, even the smallest bit, makes your dreams feel much closer to happenin’ than ‘hopefully’.
- Begin where you are, with what you have. A lot of people want to write but they are waiting to have more time, more research done, more inspiration, an agent first (it doesn’t usually work that way) before they commit. No, you want to go the other way — you want to be the person so committed that they’ll eventually give you your dream job just to keep you off the streets (this may not make sense but I like it). Whatever your goal — fitness, a profession, a calling — be the person who’s doing it NOW, when you still have the nine-to-five day job, the three young kids to raise, when you’re still in school. You can do more now than you know.
- Decide if your dream matters to you. Ouch, right? Of course it matters! Well, like with a lot of things, if something really matters, then you’ll give it priority in your life. Laura Vanderkam says, ‘Instead of saying “I don’t have time” try saying “It’s not a priority,” and see how that feels.’ Your dream doesn’t have to be more important than everything in your life, but it should be in the top three I think. And your dream should definitely come before watching junky TV, hanging out with people you don’t even like, and eating fast food. If you dream matters, make it a centerpiece of your life and plans for each week.
- Spend your time with other dreamers. One of the biggest lessons I’ve learned is that the people you surround yourself with have a huge influence on you. And right now, this year, I’ve started to see that clearer than ever. I’ve realized people I like, even love, can have cynical attitudes about living their dreams. Pay careful attention to the way you feel after you spend time with people — do they bring you up or down? Are you more excited to chase your dreams — or less? Find the places where people like you hang out and if you can’t find that place, make it!
- You have to be in the good place to get to the great place. While you want to start where you are, to have to recognize how challenging living your dreams is when you’re exhausted from eating bad food, not sleeping enough, or putting up with negative people. Even changing your life a little can help you a lot when it comes to reaching your goals. So try three changes this week or month to put yourself in a better place. Maybe say no to hanging out with negative people, keeping soda in the house, and decide to commit to a ten minute walk around your neighborhood every evening. When you’re not fighting the exhausting battles, you’ll start to see more amazing possibilities.
- Most of all, spend more time where the magic happens. ‘Living your dreams’ really comes down to doing more of what makes your life magical. If you want to be a writer, just commit to spending more time writing. Volunteering is your passion? Sign up this week for anything, even if it’s only an hour a month slot. Want fitness to be a passion? Go grab a website name like Passionatefitnessfreak.com and start blogging about your new lifestyle — that will get you going!
For as long as you’re here, living is required, so why should the ‘dream’ part of your life be optional?
And check out these great quotes —