We all dream though some believe that they don’t. Unless you awaken during or near the end of a dream, you may not remember the two or three dreams your mind experiences each night.
Our dreams are sometimes meaningful, especially those that recur as if our subconscious is trying to tell us something important. More often, dreams simply echo what we have been preoccupied with during the day. When I was young, my parents had a huge yard and it could take hours to mow the lawn and rake the grass and leaves. At the end of the day when I closed my eyes, all I could see would be leaves and grass, and I might even dream about yard work.
Dreams are among the most ephemeral conscious phenomena. Unless we reinforce our recollection of a dream by further conscious thought, the images, sensations and events quickly evaporate and are forever beyond the reach of memory.
These are the dreams of our unconscious and as such they are largely beyond our control.
Another type of dream is within our conscious control. These are our dreams of our own future. They include the consciously crafted fantasies of our youth to become a rockstar, an Olympic athlete or a Nobel-winning scientist.
In young adulthood, many of us still dream of the ideal relationship, career or home. These dreams too can be fleeting and ephemeral. Many of us abandon our fantasies when bitten repeatedly by reality.
At some point, most of us set aside our dreams and settle for a regular life. We do what needs to be done, we keep a steady job and most of the time, life is good enough.
Of course, we ought not to take the blessings of this day for granted. Though there is beauty to be seen in each day and we can be happy with what we have been given, we each at every age still need our dreams. These are our dreams of a great life, of reaching our potentials and living life fully.
To live the life you deserve and before you can define your personal goals, you must first dream. Your dream is the answer to the question, “Deep in your heart, what do you really want?”
We have to question our dreams when they may be borrowed. Are they our dreams or those of our friends and family? Are they the products of our materialistic and consumer culture? Are they the poorly-informed musings of our inexperienced youth – dreams that we have outgrown?
Every few miles along our journey through life, we have to stop and check our bearings. It seems easier to plod along in the same direction day after day, year after year than to pause and look at the roadmap. Are you living your dream? Are you moving towards it?
If we forget about our dreams, we settle for a life good enough but a life unfulfilled.
Our dreams help us to stretch – to reach for our potential.
Unhappiness can arise from not seeing what you have and not seeing what you can be. Happiness comes from living and loving fully.
This is the stuff our dreams are made of. So dream on. Dream perchance to live.