Wednesday, June 08, 2005

The Dreaming "Trap"

Dreaming or "visioning" is an essential step to any worthy goal. It is designed to fuel your imagination to create a compelling vision of the Big Life you deeply desire. By "compelling," I mean a vision that compels you to take action.

But the dreaming step can become a trap. A Big Dream can degrade into a fantasy--a sort of alternate reality that you experience in your imagination but never actually live. You end up getting "stuck" in the dream phase, because dreaming satisfies your need to do something without actually doing something uncomfortable.

What springs the trap? Fear of risk. Most people never act on their Big Dream because they reject or resist the fear their dream evokes. The terror of what might happen if they acted on their dream effectively paralyzes them--masquerading as circumstantial distractions, the busyness of "ordinary life," or the demands of others on their time and energy.

"It's a dangerous thing," Bilbo tells his nephew Frodo, "walking out your front door. You put one foot in front of the other, and before long there's no telling where you might end up."

That's the danger of acting on your dreams. You can plan and envision all you like, but the deep truth of pursuing your dream is that you can never actually be certain of where you end up. Big Dreams, by their very nature, are inherently terrifying. That's just part of the deal.

So to act on a Big Dream you must first make friends with your fear. The fear won't go away. You can't dream your way past it. You must accept it, even befriend it, and welcome it as your guide and companion on the journey. Fear can keep your senses sharp. Fear can make you smarter. It can even keep you pointed in the right direction. "Follow the fear" is usually a good compass for pursuing a Big Dream. Because the Big Dream is NEVER in your comfort zone. It's always "out there" in the uncharted lands of what if.

Let the dreaming continue. You need it. You desperately need it, actually. But don't let the dreaming become a way of avoiding the hard work of taking action in the real world.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thank you.