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Make Room for Your Dreams

| | Inspiration

What will it take to make this THE year you make your most heartfelt, important dream for your future a reality?

bookofimaginationThe turn of a new year is a bit like turning over the page to a clean sheet of paper.  For many it’s a time of dreaming, resolutions, and goal setting.

Chances are, even if you didn’t cast a resolution or set goals, that clean sheet of paper will fill quickly once the new year begins.  There will be no shortage of commitments and obligations, of the things you want to do, and the things you need to do.  So consider this…

Resolutions can serve as a “restart” button on your commitments and help you to live with intention.

Goals can help you focus and choose your priorities from the seemingly never ending list of possible distractions and demands you can expect on your time throughout the year.

Dreams, however, will require more than planning ahead. If you want to make meaningful progress in realizing a dream this year, consider you will need to make room in your mind and your heart.

After all, dreams are magnificent, but fragile things.  Whatever your dream may be, if you want to make progress in realizing it this year consider the most important thing you can do now is to make the room you need to pursue it. Remember the wisdom of Walt Disney: “If you can dream it, you can do it.”

Here are 3 steps to making room for your dreams:

1.  Write Your Dream Down

What is your dream?  Why is it so important?  What will it make possible in your life and the lives of others?  If you are looking for guidance in discovering and clarifying your dreams I highly recommend Whitney Johnson’s book Dare, Dream, Do: Remarkable Things Happen When You Dare to Dream.

Personally I resisted writing my dreams down for many years.  I had no trouble with writing down goals, but dreams were differnt.  In hindsight I can see that is because they matter so much more.  Dreams aren’t just something we do.  They represent who we are and who we are choosing to become.  I think I feared that if I wrote it down and did not realize it, I would not be able to face the disappointment.  Whatever your resistance may be, do not skip this step.  It is crucial.

2.  Create a Cocoon for Your Dream

Your dream needs to be kept front and center in your life.  Yet it also needs to be protected for two reasons.  One is your dream may pose a threat to others or the status quo of your current relationships.  The second is because truly owning your dreams can make you vulnerable.  So do share your dream with someone daily to keep it alive and help it develop and grow inside of you.  And be selective about with whom you share it.  Be sure those you entrust with your dream want your dream for you as much or as more than you do for yourself.

In these ways you create a safe environment for your dreams to develop until you and your dream are strong enough to face the world.  It’s a lot like the cocoon that builds the strength a butterfly needs to emerge from safety to spread it’s wings and fly.

3.  Commit to Clearing the Past that is in Your Way

There are two things that often get in the way of realizing your dreams.  It isn’t clear or compelling enough for you to be willing to pursue it no matter what.  If that is the case, then go back to step 1 because there is more work to do to get out of the gate.

The second is the influences and experiences of your past.  If you haven’t yet realized your dream, or even gotten started chances are something from your past is in the way.  It could be a belief or a fear from something that didn’t go as planned.  it could be a disappointment from which there is lingering sadness or doubt in yourself.  The good news is the moment you can identify it, is the moment when it loses it’s grip because you now have a choice.  Do I choose my future or do I choose my past?

You will likely have to do this often.  You may find you need the support of a close friend or a coach.  However you approach it, if you commit to continuing to recognize and clear the past when you notice you are stuck, you will continue to make progress.

May 2014 be a year for you to not only dream, but to make room for your dreams to flourish!

 

Image credit: <a href=’http://www.123rf.com/photo_18295744_concept-of-imagination-reading-a-book.html’>alphaspirit / 123RF Stock Photo</a>

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Mino Farooq Akhtar   |   01 January 2014   |   Reply

Thanks Susan for this very practical yet inspiring approach to New Year’s Resolution..we all want to be better and wish for it, but this gives a step-by-step approach to get into action. What I would also add to this that we also grow and learn by not focusing just on ourselves and our dreams, but by giving to others – our time, our effort, our love, our care. So in there somewhere is that interconnectedness to the larger whole which we attract when we shift away from focus on self, and magically it helps our dreams too. Would love to hear your thoughts on that!

May 2014 be another great year for you, Fred and Sarah…love, Mino

Susan Mazza   |   06 January 2014   |   Reply

Hi Mino, thanks for adding this line of thinking here. You raise an important point: “we also grow and learn by not focusing just on ourselves and our dreams, but by giving to others – our time, our effort, our love, our care.”

It is because of our interconnectedness that I believe focusing on ourselves and on others are inevitably connected. It is why I suggest when writing down your dreams that you answer this question: “What will it make possible in your life and the lives of others?”

The idealist in me prefers to believe that the dreams we have that are in the service of the greatest good in the world and the highest and best use of our individual gifts will ultimately garner the most support from all of the forces available.

Loved seeing the photos of your beautiful family and how it has grown! Wishing you all a magical year!

Amber-Lee Dibble   |   01 January 2014   |   Reply

Susan!`⋎´✫¸.•°*”˜˜”*°•✫
..✫¸.•°*”˜˜”*°•.✫
☻/ღ˚ •。* ˚ ˚✰˚ ˛★* 。 ღ˛° 。* ° ˚ • ★ *˚ .ღ 。
/▌*˛˚ ░H░A░P░P░Y░ ░N░E░W░ ░Y░E░A░R░ ˚ ✰* ★
/ ♪♫*¨*.¸¸˚. ★ *˛ ˚* ✰ ღ。* 。✰˚* ˚ ★ღ ¸¸.*¨*♫♪

#2 really struck me hard. Thank you for this post, today of all days.

Susan Mazza   |   02 January 2014   |   Reply

Thanks for the splash of new year spirit in your comment Amber-Lee! Glad it resonated. Making a dream become a reality is not for the faint of heart. It takes strength and courage. Wishing you a magical year!

Jo   |   02 January 2014   |   Reply

Thanks Susan for a great post 🙂

My dream this year is to travel the UK coast with my young family (homeschooling or unschoolimg along the way). We intend to set off in the summer & travel for 12 months & in that time, my dream (or intention) is to teach 500 people to meditate.

How am I making room in my mind & heart?
1. Write it down – I’ve ‘branded’ it as the Effortless 500 project & am writing it into my website. I still don’t know how it’s going to happen, but I believe I’m thinking, talking, writing & intending it into being (behaving as if it’s already a foregone conclusion… in fact on my vision board for this year I added ‘we did it!’).

2. Create a cocoon – I think the frontiers of it are cocooned in my conversations with my husband as the ideas develop, but as each idea unfolds I feel freer to share, with a wider audience, the ones that went before it (it somehow seems that each crazy step that appears makes the previous step less crazy & therefore easier to share!)

3. Let go – my practice of Effortless Meditation helps me to move beyond limitations; to be free from fear; to know that whatever I can dream… I can do! My practice is helping me to clear & release old patterns in my subconscious on a daily basis so I’m clearer & more able to access my wisdom, courage and peace within…

Thanks for helping me to see that although we don’t have a campervan, haven’t contacted people about the first project we’ll get involved in or quite worked out how we’ll make an income yet… we’re still making progress and are exactly where we are intended to be 🙂

Jo

Susan Mazza   |   06 January 2014   |   Reply

You are most welcome Jo! Your dream sounds so exciting and what a great example of applying these steps so thank you for leading by example here.

I especially like what you said about the cocooning happening in conversations with your husband, and as the ideas unfold you are freer to share. This demonstrates how realizing your dreams is not a linear process, but rather an iterative one. Each step of the way the path becomes clearer, but to get that clarity you must be in committed conversations about your future and in action to realize it.

And I LOVE the boldness of declaring your dream even without knowing how. Thinking we need to know how can have us set goals that are incremental improvements over the past rather than dreams for us to passionately realize.

Please do come back and share more as your dream unfolds!

Bill Benoist | Leadership Heart Coaching   |   03 January 2014   |   Reply

You mentioned that if you wrote your dreams down and did not realize them, you would face disappointment. I think this is why so many people say they will ‘try’ to do something, but will not ‘commit’ to doing it. When they say they will try, they are already creating that self-doubt – that get out of jail free card, if they fail. Maybe they think It won’t feel like failing as much?

Happy New Years, Susan!

Susan Mazza   |   06 January 2014   |   Reply

Thanks for that insight Bill. I am guessing you, too, may be a fan of Yoda from Star Wars who says “do or do not, there is no try”.

“Trying” can be a way to nudge ourselves forward, but, as you point out,it often just fans the flame of self doubt. It is indeed a kind of “get out of jail free card” if you fail. It takes courage to remove that card from your deck!

Karin Hurt   |   06 January 2014   |   Reply

I love the concept of a cocoon for your dream. Terrific post.

Susan Mazza   |   06 January 2014   |   Reply

Thanks Karin! May your cocoon give flight to something magical this year!

Karin Hurt   |   06 January 2014   |   Reply

I love the concept of a cocoon for your dream. Terrific post.

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