Do you have any dreams that scare you? About five years ago, I shared this quote on my Facebook page, and I think about it often:
“If your dreams don’t scare you, they’re not big enough.”
Before I’d ever heard the above phrase, I instinctively used my fear to gauge my dreams. If I got something in my head that made my heart race, it definitely held my attention. That idea would get all of my focus, and I’d spend the next several days sketching things out, crafting vision boards, and figuring out if I had enough money to make it happen. If I’m being honest with myself, it was all probably a product of my anxiety. But if I could process all of that, albeit terrified, but still conclude that it was a good idea, then I’d run with it.
I remember when just the act of owning the studio and getting it off the ground was the big, scary dream. There were so many things to consider - renting a space, music licensing, curriculum and lesson plans, costumes, actually making enough money to pay the bills. Now I’m setting goals that I never would have dared consider fifteen years ago - enrollment targets, upgrades, and full time staff, just to name a few.
A couple of weeks ago on the blog, I threw out the idea of dream-casting — the practice of laying out what you want your life to look like in the future. I told you to “imagine what you want your life to look like, and be as specific as possible. Don’t limit your thoughts, or worry about the steps and process; that comes later.” Well, now it’s later. In the dream-cast, we have to look at the goals; we have to know where we’re going before we figure out how to get there. Next summer, I want to take Ella on a road trip out west to see Mount Rushmore and Yellowstone. I’ve opened up Google Maps several times to look at the overview of the trip — how many overall miles we’d travel, states we’d go through, primary things we’d like to see. I’m in dream mode. But if I really want to make this trip happen, I’m going to have to zoom in, look at specific routes and figure out the best one, crunch numbers for travel costs, and lay out the best plan for a successful trip. The vision has been cast - now it’s time for action.
Let me be a total Debbie Downer for a minute. You know that cliche “If you can dream it, you can do it”? I call bull. I am absolutely not questioning anyone’s capability, or intelligence, or desire. But at some point, your desire to work for it needs to match your ability to dream. I really want to be a more organized person. I want the home with everything in its place and the empty hamper (because all the laundry is done) and full cupboards (because all the dishes are actually put away). However, my resolve to actually do those things on a consistent basis is pretty weak. Sure, sometimes I impress myself; but most times, I don’t put in anywhere near the amount of work to make that dream come true. I can flip through several dreams I’ve moved through in the past decade that never came to be. In some instances, my priorities changed or shifted, but in others, I squandered the opportunity with a lot of wishing, want-to’s, and somedays.
Reaching your goals happens one step at a time. Sometimes the steps move quickly; other times not so much. But what’s important is that you’re taking steps. So, here’s something I’d like you to try. Write out a dream-cast. Envision what your life looks like in 1, 5, 10 years - whatever length of time makes you most excited to try this out. Remember - dream big. Up next, pick one of those ideas; just one. Might I suggest whatever you wrote down that sets your soul on fire? Maybe it’s a side-hustle; maybe it’s something for your home; maybe it’s paying off debt; maybe it’s building a new space for your business. Pick one thing and do a brain-dump of all the different things you can or should do to make that happen. If you’re like me, that initial list won’t make a bit of sense…look it over, and rewrite it in more of a sensical/logical order. Then, do one thing. Take one step. Write down one action item in your planner, with a specific date and time, and then Do. That. Thing. No excuses.
Dreaming big is a lovely notion. It makes us wide-eyed with wonder and possibility. Working hard is the reality check. “If your dreams don’t scare you, they’re not big enough.” If you’re scared of your dreams, you realize there’s work involved; and it’s when you realize there’s work involved that you can DO that work and make the dream happen. I don’t believe that if you dream it, you can do it. But I do believe that if you dream it, you can do it IF you’re willing to show up and do the work to get there.
So, what scary dream are you taking your first step toward this week? I’d love to hear about your big dreams and your action steps. Make some moves, people.
My name is Miranda and I'm a mom, spouse, dance teacher, and entrepreneur. I’m going to share my life with you. The good, the bad, the weird. I hope to inspire you, encourage you, make you laugh. I’ll be honest. And I can’t wait to learn more about you through it all.