It’s true. Not that all of your life goals and dreams will go unfulfilled, but the ones that offer nothing worthwhile will probably live in your imagination and nowhere else.
Black Hole Focus
I mean to say that some of our dreams are more useful than others because they are actually useful to others.
My useless dreams come from a black hole focus on the self where the gravity center of my universe is me.
In 2011, I flirted with the idea of moving West to become a snowboarding instructor. I respect teaching as a profession and might be a successful snowboarding instructor if I tried now, but back then my sole motivation was to waste away on mountains, giving enough lessons to bum a lift pass for the season.
If I had followed that dream, these days I might still be in Colorado, higher than Bill Clinton playing with those balloons at the Democratic National Convention.
That was a useless dream.
Any good dreams I have are always concerned with having a productive life that helps other people. They consist of having something to offer that provides substantial physical, spiritual, mental, or financial benefit to another human being.
Perchance to Speak
Possessing a good dream is not sufficient to see it fulfilled. I have to share it with others, or no one will know that the dream exists or what I am offering and willing to do.
One of my dreams is to speak throughout the U.S. to offer hope in the midst of mental health ordeals. I believe the story of my experience in 2008-2009 and everything that has happened since could help a great many families as their loved ones struggle through breakdowns, professional loss, and bouts of depression.
If no one knows about this dream, there’s zero percent chance it will come to pass. If I am open about the dream, sharing it freely, perhaps someone will think of me first when they are looking for speakers on the subject of mental health and knowing one’s limits.
I am anticipating the possibilities of speaking out about these things in the near future. (In fact, I have been encouraged to pursue this by the enthusiastic way audiences have already responded to my story and song online and in person.)
Weeding and Writing
Separate the useful dreams from your daydreams, and decide which ones are worth pursuing. Write them down or keep some kind of visual record so that they will stick. Share them liberally, and start working toward them deliberately. Godspeed!
* * *
p.s. If you want to give clearer shape to your useful dreams, I recommend “cataloguing” yourself. I shared my experience and excitement from doing so in this post.