In my last post, I lead you through Goal Setting Step One: Reflect. If you haven’t done your reflecting yet, stop reading this and go back to step one.
If you’ve done your reflecting, then it’s time to have some fun. There’s a difference between goal setting and dreaming. We’re not yet looking into the how’s and the when’s, we’re just dreaming about the endless possibilities before you. You can’t set goals until you’ve spent time dreaming, because if you have no idea where you want to go, planning how to get there is useless.
I always say: Dream big, go big. Dream small, go small. I say this because when you’re dreaming, you’re deciding what, given no limitations and endless resources, you’d really want to do. I call this “Dream casting” — giving yourself a forecast of what you’d like to see happen in your life if you could do anything. (By the way, you can.)
Are you willing to let go of your own limiting beliefs and everything that has happened to you in the past, and are you willing to dream right now of endless possibilities for yourself and your life?
What if you won the Mega Millions today? How would that change what you do tomorrow? Dream as though that really happened, and don’t let anything hold you back. It’s that kind of dreaming that will show you where your real goals lie.
Take out your journal (If you’re thinking, what journal? It’s because you didn’t do Step One. Stop reading this and go back to Reflecting!). Write a list of 25 dreams. By dreams I mean BIG dreams, such as running a marathon, spending a month in Italy getting lost in wine country, buying a Lamborghini (notice I’m not telling you to buy a Honda Civic. Not that that’s not a great car, but I want you to dream BIG), jumping out of a helicopter onto an ice peak in Alaska, having a million dollars in the bank within the next five years, getting your pilot’s license, or watching all of your children graduate college.
Once you’ve listed your 25 biggest dreams, you need to do the Old Folks Home–I mean, “Retirement Community Center”–Test again. When you’re nearing the end of your life, thinking back on that list of 25 dreams, which five of them on a scale of 1-10 give you the most pain knowing that you lived your whole life and didn’t do or achieve them? No matter how outlandish those five are, add them to your goal list.
You never know what tomorrow will bring, so invest in your dreams of tomorrow TODAY. And remember: Dream big, go big. Dream small, go small.
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As a speaker and author, Curtis Zimmerman has impacted over one million people with his life-changing messages and award-winning programs. Curtis is an expert at transforming organizations by inspiring individuals to live their lives at performance level.
Want to be inspired? Check out his podcast The Next 24 Hours.