How to Discover Your Dreams
Do you allow yourself to dream? Or do you think dreams are frivolous + a waste of time? I think our dreams are important. I think they are given to us, and it is up to us to do something with them.
Maybe you do dream. Maybe you keep wanting to do something and you keep putting off doing it, but it keeps coming back into your mind, interrupting your days and taking over your thoughts. You keep saying things like, ‘There’s no way I could ever do that.’ or ‘There’s no way I could ever go there.’ or ‘There’s no way I could ever make that much money.’ And you push your dreams away.
But what happens the next day? The dream is back, and it tickles your brain again, and you think, ‘That would be so much fun.’ or maybe, ‘That would solve so many problems.’
I believe our dreams come to us because they want to be manifested and I believe it is our responsibility to nurture them so they can come true. But what if you don’t even know what your dreams are? What if you don’t have dreams?
Today I want to teach you how to discover what your dreams so that you can live a more abundant life.
WHAT IS A DREAM
Dreams are your desires + aspirations. I love how Brooke Castillo says that your dreams are your maps to your destiny. This is exactly what it means to begin with the end in mind, the second habit of highly effective people. You need to know where you are going. You need to know who you want to be, what you want to do, what you want to have. Stephen Covey teaches this so well. But it only works if you can access your dreams.
WHERE ARE YOUR DREAMS
Your dreams are inside of you, waiting to be discovered, waiting to be lived. I think our dreams are given to us and we have the choice to ignore them or to honor them. If we choose to honor them, I think we will live a more abundant life, feeling fulfilled. You will never wish you didn’t go after your dreams, even if you fail. Your dreams are there, inside of you. Let’s get them out.
HOW TO DISCOVER YOUR DREAMS
Step one: Clear Out the Clutter
add ‘margin’ in your life
follow a routine
clear out physical space
There is this thing that someone coined ‘margin’ and I think it is the coolest idea. Exactly the same way paper has margin around it, you create margin in your day. This means you allow for extra time, or space, between tasks to slow down. This means not overbooking your calendar. This means having everything done for the day a whole hour before you actually need to be in bed so you can sit + unwind. Find ways to create space in your day.
You can start creating space by creating routines. Our brains love routines because they love patterns. The brain wants to do what is the easiest, what takes the least amount of effort. Start routines so you can quit thinking about what you have to do every day. It’s like how you drive to the grocery store. You don’t even have to think about how to get there. You just get in the car and drive. You go the same way every single time. It’s automatic. So much so that when you have to swing by the library first, you forget until you’re already at the store. Create routines in your days so you can get things done without thinking about doing them.
I don’t mean that every day needs to be exactly like the previous one. What I’m talking about here are the tasks that need to be accomplished. Things like the dishes, the laundry and cleaning the bathrooms. Make it a habit to automatically unload the dishwasher while the kids are eating breakfast. Make it a habit to start your first load of laundry when they head off to school. Soon you will do these things automatically, and they won’t feel like big chores.
Also, as you find yourself falling into routines + creating margin in your life, it's important to begin clearing out your physical space. It is so easy to accumulate things over the years. Start going through your things and get rid of what no longer brings you joy. (Remember this post where I talked about the KonMari method.) The bonus of clearing out physical space is that it actually creates space in your mind. It opens up your mind so you have more room to think and be proactive.
Step two: Find What Brings You Joy
what brought you joy as a child
what do you look forward to everyday
Think about your life when you were young. What kinds of things did you love doing? What were your dreams then? What was it that you could spend hours doing every Saturday? What did you always look forward to? Do you still love that thing? Is that thing anywhere in your life? What comes into your mind as you read this? If it is still attractive to you, I think maybe it's a good idea to start doing more of that thing. When you go through step one and you create space in your life, these things will be revealed to you.
Find joy in your present day. It does exist. I promise you, it is there. Creating space will also help you find joy. Slow down. Appreciate more things. Even the things that you have already. Think of ten things that you have in your life that you still want. Take those things and really start looking forward to them every day. Feel joy from a place of abundance.
Feeling abundant will make it easier to be generous. You want to give to others. You want to serve. Because in doing so, you will feel good. But you have to give from a place of love in order to feel the benefits, so feeling that abundance is really important. When you give to others, they will give. When you willingly help your neighbor, your friend, your family, your life becomes more abundant in different ways. Watch it show up in new opportunities.
Step 3: Quiet Your Mind
spend time in nature
When I say quiet your mind, it is a bit different from creating space. Once you have space and you are experiencing more joy, it’s time to be quiet + listen. You need to listen so you can hear your dreams. One way to do this is to spend time in nature. Go for a walk. Go to the park. Be mindful about your time, and make it count. Don’t go into nature with your podcast blasting in your ears. Go into nature with the intent of listening to your thoughts. Let yourself think about everything and wonder. Lie in the grass. Listen to the sounds of nature. Smell it, and feel it. Open your senses.
If you find it’s difficult to be with your thoughts or if you feel like you have too many thoughts, start journaling. Writing is such a powerful tool. I journal daily because it makes me feel so good. I’m talking about good old fashioned pen + paper here, nothing electronic. Give yourself the freedom of writing everything without trying to organize it. Just get your thoughts out onto paper. And if the random task appears- Don’t forget to buy milk on the way home! -write that down too. Writing will relieve your mind of so much. It will help you open your mind for your dreams.
And when they come to you, don’t brush them aside. Don’t push them away. Be kind to yourself. Give your dreams some time. Your first thoughts might be negative, and that’s totally normal. Remember how our brains like to use the least amount of energy? Going after dreams takes effort. Be nice to yourself when your dreams show up. Be curious.
Step four: Be Open To Receiving
check that your dream is aligned with your values
write down your dream
When you have a dream and it comes at you again + again, before you take any action it’s important to asses if it is aligned with your values. Dreams come to us from all sorts of stimulation we encounter in the world. You want to be sure that the ones you go after are the ones you are going to be proud of and keep going after until they are accomplished. You don't want to get a third of the way into something and lose your passion.
If you believe in your dream enough to want to create a plan for it, you need to dream big. Like really big. Think about your dream and about your life and what your life will look like when your dream is fulfilled. Think about what your ideal day will look like. What kinds of things will you be doing? Where will you live? What will you eat? Involve all your senses. You want to really feel that success. Don’t worry about how it will come true. Just think about what life will be like when it is true.
When you are super clear on your dream, write it down, in first person. Write out that visualization you had. Hang it up, read it everyday. This is your dream. This is something worth going for. Just for the fun of it. Don't do it because you think that success will make people think about you differently. And don’t worry about justifying your dreams. You don't have to justify them. Just go after them for yourself, because you want to.
After you discover your dreams and you have one written out one that you want to create a plan for, you need to remember to read your dream every day to keep you motivated + inspired to take action. You need to keep dreaming about it. Keep thinking about what life will be like when you’re living your dream. That will put you on the right frequency of attraction. Your next step is to set goals + create a plan so you can be on your way to fulfilling your dreams.
When you know what your next dream that you’re going after is, tell it to me in the comments. I’d love to hear!