I believe almost all humans are dreamers. The difference is about the type of the dream and how they act upon it. Dreamers can be divided into 3 different groups:
- Those who dreamed and now living their dream
- Those who dreamed and are trying to make their dreams a reality
- Those who dreamed and forgot about it because it seemed unrealistic
Did you know that 98% of people die without fulfilling their dreams? It is shocking, I was shocked when I find out about it. So why is it? The main reason is because the majority of us stay in the 3rd group, dreamers who forget about their dreams because it seems unrealistic. How can we move away from this group, how can we become part of the 2% achievers? So basically the first 2 groups. Here is a step by step process that you can follow to join the 2% achievers club.
- The first and most important step is to write down your dreams. No matter how unrealistic your dreams may sound like, write them down. You don’t need any fancy journals or Aps to keep track of your dreams. All you need is a pen and a piece of paper. Here is a sample dream list:
- Spend more time with kids and spouse
- Raise a healthy family
- Live in a neighborhood with very good schools, so the kids get a good education
- Look and feel fit and energized
- Take at least a couple of good and relaxing vacations a year without worrying about finances
- Being able to provide for their family the best of everything
- Now that you have written down your dreams, group them together if possible. When looking at our dreams, we will find at least a couple that we can group together. Let’s look at our sample list above. For this person, achieving a financial freedom will take care of at least 4 of their dreams. If they have financial freedom they will be able to spend more time with their kids, live in a good neighborhood, take vacations, and being able to provide for their family. The other two (raising a healthy family and looking fit) can be grouped under health and fitness. So for this person there is only two main goals. Notice, I changed “dream” to “goal”. Now that this parent has analyzed and organized their dreams, they have two major goals: achieving financial freedom and better health and fitness for themselves and their family.
- Now that you have turned your dreams into goals, let’s break them down into actionable items. Actionable items, should be measurable. They should be things that you can achieve within a measurable period of time. The smaller these action items, the better because you can see a progress and this will keep you motivated. Let’s break down the goals of our sample into actionable items:
- Financial freedom
- Search for ways to make passive income
- Look for another job opportunity with better pay and better work life balance
- Look into online degrees or trainings, that would help them advance in their career without taking them too much away from their family.
- Health and fitness
- Work out at least a couple days in a week
- Take the family out for a hike on the weekend
- Swipe favorite junk foods with fruits and vegetables, one at a time
- Stop buying sugary drinks
- Pack a healthy lunch and snack and take to work
- Financial freedom
- Set deadlines: now that you turned your goals into action items, set deadlines for each action item. These deadlines should be reasonable. For example, if the subject in our sample here is going to go back to school and get his or her master, they should give themselves enough time to finish it.
- Keep track of your progress: this is what will keep you motivated and help you to keep moving forward. The subject here will keep track of how many jobs they applied for, how many interviews they landed, and eventually how many job offers they got. Or maybe they decide to invest in real state as one way to make passive income, then they would keep track of their progress towards buying their investment property. In health and fitness, they can keep track of their workouts and their meals and so on.
- Celebrate your success: as we complete our action items and progress towards our goals which means getting closer to our dreams, we tend to forget to stop and celebrate our success. It is important to go back and look at step 1, where you wrote down your dreams and they looked so far out of reach and recognize how much closer you have gotten.
- Be prepared for roadblocks and setbacks: let’s be realistic, probably less than 1% of us will go through this process from beginning to the end without any issues, mistakes, roadblocks, regret, etc. What is important is that to be prepared to deal with these. There is a chance that you start that new job with a better pay and better work/ life balance and you feel miserable because now you can’t get along with your boss or your coworkers. The subject here might finish their master just to realize, the job and money perspective is not as great as they thought it will be. They will fall off their healthy eating and workout wagon due to various reasons. In this situation give yourself a short time (may be a day) to grieve and be angry (we are all humans), understand that it is okay to make a mistake and everyone makes mistakes, learn from your mistakes, find your “can do” attitude and start over.
- Don’t be afraid to go beyond your dream: once you turned your dream into reality, don’t be afraid to take it further and dream even bigger. Our subject here, once they achieved their health and fitness dream, they can dream bigger and look for ways to get their friends and family to get healthier and more fit.
Dreams can be turned into reality, we just need to turn them into goals, break them down into actionable items and keep track of our progress.
Stay happy and healthy