You might be a writer. You might be a dancer. You might be an artist, a chef, a teacher, a mother, a doctor, a carpenter, a student, a janitor, a musician, a preacher, a lawyer, a politician… You might be none of those at all. But it doesn’t matter, because I think we can all agree that inside the very depths of who we are, at heart, we are all dreamers. We all have hopes, we all have aspirations. Dreaming is as natural to us as breathing.
Sometimes our dreams can get clogged down by life and circumstances and all kinds of other things, but just because they’re buried, that doesn’t mean those dreams disappear. Admittedly, sometimes they can change. When I was a child, I dreamed of growing up and becoming a hairdresser. Now, not so much. As a teenager, I dreamed of being a veterinarian. Now, definitely not so much. I wanted to earn an ARIA award (despite the fact that I don’t like singing in front of people), I wanted to win an Academy Award (despite the fact that I can’t act – full stop), and I even wanted to receive an Olympic medal (despite the fact that, growing up, the only exercise I did involved running after the ice-cream truck). As an adult, my dreams are different now…
… but I still dream.
And you know what? Dreaming hurts. It hurts, because when our dreams don’t come true, or when they don’t turn out like we anticipated, the disappointment can be crushing. We can feel shame. We can feel anger. We can feel pain, longing, loneliness, even guilt. And, primarily, we can feel frustration. Because why, why, why didn’t our dreams come true?
But at the other end of the scale is the reason why we keep on dreaming, and that’s because dreams are beautiful. They show the best in us, our greatest potential, our most fervent desires. They give us hope for a better tomorrow, for a brighter future. Dreams can keep us going when we have nothing else left. They focus our minds, they guard our hearts, they shape our identities.
Someone once gave me this advice: “Dream bigger. Dream brighter.” At the time, I thought I already was dreaming pretty big and bright, but now that I look back, I can see that he was right. We can always dream bigger, we can always dream brighter. And that’s because our dreams are only ever limited by our own imaginations. Step outside the box of your mind, take a trip down the rabbit hole into Wonderland, and start dreaming of a greater future than you’ve ever before imagined possible.
What was it that Walt Disney said?… *Google break* … Ahh, there it is: “If you can dream it, you can do it. Always remember, this whole thing was started with a dream and a mouse.” It doesn’t get much smaller than a mouse! But his dream was big, his dream was bright. And now look at how far that dream has come!
So, I want to encourage you: hold onto your dreams; reawaken those desires that you’ve lost or buried; and, importantly, always be ready and willing to dream new dreams. Because life is worth living, dreams are worth having, and the future is never, ever without hope.