Big Dreams and Why You Need to Ditch the SMART Goals

Hey, Beautiful Dreamer, got any Big Dreams?

Ah, big dreams. You’ve got a few, right? Maybe it is starting your own business, finding the love of your life, having children, or maybe your current big dream is to just get through your ever-expanding to-do list. Maybe you are thinking, “Yah, I’ll get to those crazy dreams, someday” or “I need to stay realistic, I’ve got to have SMART goals, right?” or better yet “Dreams? I’ve just got to get through the day!” Here’s the thing…you can live your dreams now, you are capable of more, and chances are you are holding back on the throttle ‘cause life already feels too fast. I’ll let you in on a secret that 99% of the coaches out there won’t tell you: the bigger you dream, the more success you will realize. Still skeptical? Read on.

If Dreaming Big is so great, why don’t we do it all the time?

According to big dreamer and life coach Tony Robbins’ research over several decade of coaching, humans want adventure, and at the very same time, they crave certainty. This fact means that although we love to dream big, we also want to know that we are going to have the comforts we have gotten used to and are loath to put those at risk. Whether it is a regular salary, familiar faces, or just a warm bed at night, we are wired for repeating what we think we know. Another big reason we go so small with our dreams is wanting to please others. If you’ve chosen classes in school, or even your profession, based on what your parents wanted, you know what I’m talking about. Chances are, they had your best interests in mind, but hey, who’s gonna be living those choices? That’s right.

Epic Dream Fails

OK, so maybe you’ve made a few teeny-tiny choices that were not entirely your ideas. Or were a even good ideas. Or, actually they turned out to be tremendously horrible ideas. Well, its time to change all that here and now. This is your wake up call, my dear, and you have permission to choose some new dreams, or revive some old ones. Here is some dream revival inspiration: Although I’ve been actively coaching for over a year now, I started my coaching journey back in 2005 when I signed up for an intensive certification program through the International Coaching Academy. It was my dream to coach, but with a big move out of the city, shiny new job and boyfriend (who is now my husband), I became distracted from the certification course and put the pause button on my dream for almost 10 years. In 2015, I came to my senses and re-started the 125 hour course. You read that right, the whole entire course, again. Now fully revived from sleep and with a busy schedule, my coaching dream is at last alive and well.

Developing the Big Dream Muscle

So, if you’re ready to trade in your little dreams, but have found your big dream muscle is a little flabby, here are a few question for getting back to the gym without getting laughed at by all the other big dreamers.

  • What did you want to be when you grew up?
  • What goals do you want to accomplish in five years, ten years, in your life?
  • If this were your last day of life, what do you think you’d regret not having done?

Super-sizing your Dreams

Got an idea or two at this point? Great. Now double it. Triple it. How far can your imagination take that dream? Try this, if your dream was that you always wanted to become a nurse, then stretch that idea further based on why this is important to you. Is becoming a nurse to make a positive impact on others lives? If so then ask yourself, how can that impact be greater? What about becoming a nurse and starting a hospital in an area of need, or becoming a doctor, or working with the Red Cross? Still with me? This is not about letting what you think is realistic seep in, it is about setting yourself free.

What to do with the Voice of Reason

I can hear it now: These dreams are too big! I can’t do it! This is stupid, why should I even get my hopes up? Whoa there, great points, but stay with me and let’s take this step by step. Think about someone that dreamed big and did it. A few of my favourite dreamers are: Joan of Arc, Mother Teresa, the Dalai Lama, and just because I’m a Mac geek, Steve Jobs. All of these folks were just like you right now at some point…they started with a vision and over time their dreams became realities. What did it take? A crazy amount of work, hassles, perseverance, overcoming obstacles…and probably annoyances, they were human too after all. You are also capable of the same levels of greatness in your own chosen dreams. So when the Voice of Reason rears its very well-groomed head, tell it that your dreams are reasonable with time and effort. It should calm down, at least a bit. The biggest thing you can do that will help calm the Voice is figure out your dream’s why. You’ve probably had a few thoughts about this already, but take it further. Try the “Why? Deep Dive” exercise. Ask yourself “why is this dream important to me?” and then when you have an answer, ask yourself why that is important to you. Go five levels of Why down and you’ll discover you have some serious ammunition to manage the Voice of Reason.

OK, I Have a Dream, Now What?

Big Dream? Check. Ready to start? Hopefully the answer is yes, or at least you are considering the possibility of saying yes to the first step. What is that first step? And the second question to ask yourself is, how committed are you to taking it…and the one after that? I’ve learned that no amount of planning can take the place of action and commitment. Here is the big ticket question: Are you ready for a wild ride? It won’t go how you think it will. It will be worse, and better. And it will be the ride of a lifetime.

3 Tips for Dreaming Big

  1. Get a roller coaster buddy. Recruit a best friend, hire a coach, or work with anyone who’ll support you through think and thin ’til you find yourself living your dream.
  2. Take the first step, today. Or better yet, right now. What can you do today, or even right now, to move your dream one tiny bit forward. Remember the quote “The journey of a lifetime begins with a single step”?
  3. Imagine the next 90 days. Where do you want to be with your dream by this time? Think about it now and then start to get an action plan around how to make it real.

Need help making your big dreams a reality? Contact Lara for a free strategy session.

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