Design Your Dream – You gotta know what you want to get what you want.
Let me ask you a question.
“What do you want for your life?”
Usually when I ask a person what they want, the response sounds something
“I don’t want a job I hate.”
“I don’t want to spend the rest of my life alone.”
“I don’t want to be poor.”
“I want to stop arguing with my family.”
“I want things to be easier.”
“I just want to be happy.”
Notice the pattern? The first three start with what the person doesn’t want. The rest are moving in the right direction, but not really clear. For example, what does easier mean? What does happy look like?
I used to say, “I want to make the most of this life and really learn as much as I can about myself so I can be a better person.”
Guess what happened?
I started having challenge after challenge around my emotions, beliefs, relationships, and everything else you can think of. Because the more you learn about yourself, the more opportunities you have to become a better person. I just didn’t think through the “challenge” piece.
After I while, I wised up, got clear, and started saying, “I want to have fun. I want to work with people who are good at what they do and have fun doing it. I want honest meaningful relationships with people who are willing to do the hard work so we can all do good for others.”
It seemed like a reasonable list, but I’ve asked for reasonable things in the past that never happened. I wondered, “Well, what if this time is was different?” And then I started getting more and more specific. I got clear on what fun looks like, defined what “meaningful relationships” mean to me, and then guess what happened?
Everything started to change and for the better. By the way, for the better doesn’t always mean easy. But when you know you’re heading in the right direction and all the signs point to yes, it makes it a lot easier to take that next step forward.
And the same can happen for you.
But first, you’ve got to get clear about what you want. I mean, really clear.
In this exercise, you’re going to get to identify your heart’s innermost desires. Some may be obvious while others may surprise you. You may find there’s a long-forgotten dream that still wants to come alive. You may find a dream you didn’t even know existed. But when you start to consider it, it becomes more interesting and something you want to explore.
Design Your Experience:
One of my favorite things about daydreaming is getting lost in the thoughts and ideas that show up. Playing with the possibilities and seeing how far I can go whether I believe they are possible or not. (Hint: ANYTHING is possible.)
Now, that’s not the easiest thing to do when there are bells and alarms at every turn reminding me to check my emails, texts, voicemails, and all the other things that tell me where I should be and what I should be doing. So I set myself up for success and create an environment that supports it.
Remember being a kid and letting your imagination run wild? That’s what you’re going for here. If you’re thinking, “Yeahhhhhh, I don’t do that.” Ok. Do what feels best. But do something. Dreams don’t happen if you don’t participate. It’s really that simple.
Here are some things you can do to set yourself up for success:
- Find a quiet place to sit, reflect, and write/type
- Grab something good to drink. It’s always good to stay hydrated.
- Get something delicious to snack on. I mean, nourishment, right?
- Wishing you could get away to a park, the ocean, or spa? Try a candle, incense, or some essential oils that represent those destinations
Let’s get started!
"Design Your Experience" Exercise
Now that you have the core experiences and details, you can always go back and revisit any of them to see what else you can find.
Remember the details you noticed and documented in those experiences? Those are clues. You may see an award that looks like the one you received or meet someone who looks a lot like the person at lunch. Treat it like a game or adventure and celebrate the matches that line up between the dream in your heart and the dream in your life. Before you know it, you’ll see the two coming together.