The man. The ring. The dress. The degree. The career. The dogs. The kids. Still waiting for a white picket fence….but it struck me the other day that so many of my childhood dreams have been fulfilled and it made me wonder- what am I dreaming for these days? Am I dreaming big enough? Am I even dreaming? This post is a pep talk for myself and all of us moms to keep on dreaming and a few steps for helping others if you’ve also been so blessed!
While growing up, I wished for. Prayed for. Dreamed for the days that I now find myself living. It’s so easy to get comfortable and find myself living in a daze, so impatient that I miss today by living in my checklist. Here are four steps that I find necessary to ground myself and keep reaching for the stars even while living in fulfilled dreams.
1. Be Thankful.
Sometimes I forget how many blessings are already staring me in the face every day. I find it so much easier to dwell on the problems
(The man– relational pains and stinky laundry. The ring– actually, that’s perfect :). The dress– I bet it doesn’t fit anymore! The degree– maybe I should have gone for journalism instead?!? The career– my work is meaningless. The dogs– there is hair EVERYWHERE! The kid– feed. clean. sleep. repeat.)
that come with my fulfilled dreams rather than celebrate the joys
(The man– best friend and love. The ring– still perfect. The dress– thankful for my health. The degree– thankful for the ability to write and know how to eat healthful foods. The career– great consulting gig lets me stay home with my little one. The dogs– their ridiculous, unconditional love. The kid– my heart overflows at her smile.).
So many times, a perspective shift towards my now is all that it takes to free my heart to dream new possibilities for my future.
Also, I am challenging myself to actually BE thankful. I didn’t get to where I am today on my own. Others helped me get here. Tell people that you are thankful for their influence in your life. And most importantly, tell the Giver of all good gifts. James 1:17 “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.”
2. Help Someone Else Fulfill Their Dreams.
Let’s face it- we all screw up along the way. Some of us fall harder or further, but no one doesn’t fall. Dreaming big means risking failure and one of the best ways to make all those bruises worth while is to help others avoid the pitfalls that swallowed us up. Posting warning signs on others’ path to fulfilled dreams makes the journey worth the cost.
Besides avoiding failure, you may have learned a trick or two along the way that may provide insight on how others can get to their dreams faster or better. Find opportunities to tell them! Seek out mentees and be open when they are looking for you. Seek out mentors and be open to what they have to teach you. Mentorship is not a new idea, but it’s a great one. The early church was commanded to practice mentorship! And it is just as applicable for the workplace and our homes. Titus 2:3-4 “Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. Then they can urge the younger women to love their husbands and children.”
3. Dream On.
Don’t stop dreaming- ever. for ANY reason. If anything, as an adult, there is even more to dream for. The world is bigger. The stakes are higher. And more resources are within my reach. I dream for myself. I dream for my husband. I dream for my friends, and now I dream for my daughter.
Dream in pictures. Dream in words. Tell others about your dreams. My husband knows that I dream of a house where I can see either the sunrise or the sunset, doesn’t matter which one, but it’s a dream for our future home. Dream in sync (No, not about *NSYNC- all you Children of the 90’s moms!). I mean in sync with God. Psalm 37:4 says that when we submit our desires to God, He will align our dreams to His. The best dreams (and really the only ones worth dreaming!) are those that place us in the center of God’s will for our lives. Psalm 37:4 “Delight yourself also in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.”
4. Get It in Writing.
The man. The dogs. The kids. The career. The house- all those wonderfully fulfilled dreams are now vying for my every minute. The only way that I find myself continuing to move my new dreams forward is if I write. it. down. Don’t be afraid to step out and do what scares you. The first date was awkward. Labor was intimidating and a lot of work. The interview was nervewracking. Every dream has an uncertain beginning. Writing down your goal will increase the likelihood that you will risk the rejection, failure, and fear in order to obtain it. Sketch a plan for getting to where you want to be- one step at a time. Be intentional about your actions.
As kids, we didn’t have to be reminded to dream. We knew we had so much to look forward to. Join me this week as I remind myself to be intentional about putting my head in the clouds and keep dreaming toward my future and what God wants me to be.