2014: Live passionately, commit to your dreams
We travel a lot, you might have noticed that. Wherever we go we meet people and we’ve always had a family habit of inviting those people to eat a meal with us, even if it’s off foldable plates on a ground tarp because we’re cycling. I love listening to people’s stories, learning about their journeys and giving our kids the opportunity to learn from as diverse a people group as possible. I make a point of asking each of these people two questions:
- What are you passionate about?
- What are your dreams?
There is generally one of two responses:
Deer in the headlights or immediately sparkly eyes.
The initial response tells you a lot about a person.
I sat with a young backpacker on the shores of Lago de Atitlan, in the highlands of Guatemala last winter and he asked, “Why do you do that? Why do you ask those questions, I’ve noticed you doing it over and over again.” He’d been around a while.
I laughed a little. “Why? Indeed.”
“Because those two questions are all that really matter. They cut to the essence of who a person is. And no one else thinks to ask. The two things that are at the heart and soul of who we are are somehow taboo topics for conversation in too many circles. So, it’s the first thing I ask.”
So let me ask you:
What are you passionate about?
- Social Justice
- The Environment
- Financial Independence
What you are passionate about will be the thing the fuels your dream, fuels your whole life, if you let it.
The best dreams are passion driven. They are the natural outgrowth of that deeply rooted fire in your chest that, if you’re like most people, you don’t feed nearly often enough.
Find your passion. Maybe you have more than one.
For me, my passions include
- My Family
- Social Justice
If you read my blog you’ll see these themes through and through. These are the things I get fired up about, they’re the things I live and breathe, they’re the things that drive my dreams and my life choices.
These are my “Why.”
What is driving you? Look hard at what motivates you, what you get excited about, what you’re willing to joyfully spend your free time on. These are your passions.
It’s imperative in defining your dream that you define your passions & find your “Why.”
What are your dreams?
This is a tough question for lots of people to answer because they’ve neglected their dreams for so long that they honestly don’t know.
If you don’t know, how do you begin to know?
Take two hours and go somewhere alone. Don’t take your phone. Don’t take anything but a notebook and a pen.
For the first hour just walk. Quiet your mind, let go of the worries, the stresses, the daily nonsense. Acknowledge it as it comes to the surface and then let it go. Reclaim your brain space.
For the second hour, find a place to write.
- Start with a description of your perfect day
- Next describe where you thought you’d be now, when you were twenty
- Next make a bullet point list of what your dreams WERE when you were younger
- List what you’d do with your career if you could do anything you wanted
- Next make a bullet point list of what you wish you could do now if time and money were not an obstacle
- Circle the five you most want
If you’re half of a partnership then give your partner the time to do the same and combine the lists.
These are your dreams.
So now you’ve got a list of dreams. Good for you, that’s a start.
Now you have to pick one. Which dream do you want the most? Which one are you ready to sell your soul for (newsflash: you’re selling your soul for SOMETHING all the time… don’t you think it’s time to sell it for something you actually want?)
You have to believe that you can have it.
You have to believe that you are worth it.
You have to believe that you are, in fact, capable of greatness and find that inside yourself.
Do you believe those things? Even if you don’t quite, just yet, start speaking them to yourself.
It’s New Year’s Eve, my friends. We’re standing on the precipice of a whole new year and you’ve got the power to write its story however you like. Make this your year of living passionately and committing to your dreams!