Why you’re downplaying your dreams

What is your dream in life? It’s a big question I know. But every now and then it’s good to sit down and ask yourself big questions.

Our priorities change over the years and so do our dreams. Mine have certainly changed from the days when I was determined to move to London and work as a fashion writer. That life doesn’t appeal to me whatsoever now.

Really quickly, go grab a pen and paper and write down your answer – what is your big dream?

This question last came up for me at Blogtacular (in Sas Petherick’s workshop) and I was kind of surprised with what I wrote down, because my dream was the one thing I always played down to other people.

When I say play down I mean dismissing it, reducing it to something less important… you might call it a ‘hobby’ for example or ‘a bit of fun’ (some might even call it ‘just a blog’). So why do we do this?

Why are we downplaying our dreams?

Because we are scared shitless. When we really care about something, when there’s a chance we could lose it or fail miserably at it – well, it’s bloody scary. So scary in fact that we often choose to ignore it.

If we tell ourselves our dream is merely a ‘hobby’ or a ‘bit of fun’ we never have to take it seriously. We never have to try. We never have to risk failing.

No one will expect anything from us. No one will ask “Oh hey Kat, how is that XXXX going? Achieving your dreams yet?” because that’s what we think people will do if they know we have dreams, right?

It’s all about self-preservation at the end of the day. So we stay safe, cocooned in our little lie. But what would happen if you pulled that dream out of it’s hiding place and gave it some power?

What would happen if you sat down and actually thought about how you could achieve that dream? And then… what would happen if you started actually making plans? Putting the legwork in? Even telling people what your dream is? I can safely say that the sky will not fall.

If your dream is fuelled by purpose and passion, it can be achieved. If you give your dream life, action and power, it can be achieved.

If you leave it in your back pocket, buried under descriptors like ‘hobby’ then it’ll stay exactly where it is.

Now I’m not saying you must immediately decide what your dream is and tell anyone who’ll listen, sometimes we don’t even know what our dream is. So consider this an invitation for you to give it some thought.

Is there a hidden dream, a hidden ambition that actually you would love to make happen? Is there something you’re dismissing because, quite frankly it frightens you? Sit with that, whatever it may be for you, and give it some attention. Give it some love. Write some ideas, thoughts, plans and see where you end up.

You don’t have to have a master plan straight away, but if you can see a few steps, you’ll know the rest of the staircase is on the horizon – and there is a lot of power in that.

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