We have dreams when we are growing up. Most of us have vivid visions of what we imagine our lives will look like and be when we grow up. Here’s the thing, most of us forget those dreams as the realities and responsibilities of living day-to-day shove the dreams down, to be buried and forgotten. Even though these dreams may have been rooted in our passions, we are slowly taught to be practical or that we don’t have what it takes to achieve our dreams. The messages may have been subtle or they may have been loud and clear. Maybe the pragmatism is warranted, but you don’t need to abandon a dream altogether.
So I ask you, did you pursue your dream or did you betray it and leave it buried?
First, examine the definition of “to betray” or “betrayal.” According to Webster, the definition that best suits here is “to disappoint, prove undependable; to abandon, forsake.” Do your dreams fall into that category?
Don’t live your life without including your dreams in some way. Scientists are finding that dreams, waking dreams and sleeping dreams, are important to our mental and physical health. They give us a reason to get out of bed and have the drive to meet the day.
Use your time to discover a fun way or even a pragmatic way to connect with your dreams in your everyday life. For example, did you dream of running track, but you are now past the age when that is a possibility? It is not too late to be connected to that passion. You may not be able to run competitively, but you can still run. Join a running club and run on the weekends. You will be surrounded by like minded people. They will give you energy.
Another suggestion would be to spend some of your free time volunteering with a high school track team or, if possible, join the staff of a track club. Don’t overlook how exhilarating and how connected to your dream you can feel if you do something that is a part of your dream.
Did you dream of being a dancer? The fact is, dancing is a profession that also takes years of hard work and discipline. It takes access to teachers and studios and, quite frankly, it’s also expensive. If none of that was possible (and in reality you have two left feet), but you are still passionate about dance, find other ways to make it part of your life. For example you could:
open a dance studio,
take advantage of adult dancing lessons,
volunteer at the local dance theater,
create your own opportunities to dance for for fun,
work for a dance company nonprofit
What about another type of dream, such as the type of environment you would live in or the lifestyle you would have? Did you dream of living near the ocean, but in reality you are stuck in some urban jungle? Take action to make the ocean setting become a part of your life. Start planning to actually move closer to the ocean. Explore jobs that might be in the vicinity you are dreaming of. Another option would be to make living near the ocean the location of your second home. Why not take steps to acquire that second home. At least some of the time you will wake up to the sound of the ocean waves. What kind of action could you take to make it a reality?
“If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost, that is where they should be. Now put the foundations under them.”
Henry David Thoreau
You may not have reached your actual dream, however, keep in mind that the perceived “failure” of a dream may merely mean it’s time to open another door. This is when God’s guidance is so important. Ephesians 4:23 says we should “…be new in the attitude of our minds…” and as Jeremiah 29:11 reminds us, God is always a part of our dreams. He has given us skill-sets. Those skill-sets may lead us to a new aspect of our dream. You may not be able to fully realize your dreams in the way that you originally envisioned, but with a little ingenuity, if God has truly put this dream in your heart, you can usually connect with it in some way.
Nurture your mental health; don’t betray your dreams.. Be very intentional about maintaining a connection with them, even if you are past the time in your life when you can actively perform a dream such as professionally dance or run competitive track. We all have a purpose in life and that purpose is often connected to a dream or a passion. Stay as close to your dreams as possible. Try not to be guilty of betraying your dreams. Life is to be enjoyed and there is joy and contentment in following your dream or at least keeping them close.
What dreams have you betrayed, abandoned and left behind? I would love for you to leave your comments below.
‘Til next time,