What Kind of Dreamer Are You?

accountability comfort zone enjoy the journey goals take action vulnerability Mar 25, 2024

A few years ago, I attended a day-long event in San Diego that was hosted by my mentor Brendon Burchard. The whole day was filled with fantastic speakers, including Lewis Howes, Jamie Kern Lima, Trent Shelton, and more. Their messages were equal parts educational and inspirational. My kind of event!

There was one speaker who made the biggest impact on me that day. That was Tom Bilyeu. Tom talked about ideas such as the importance of having grit when you’re working towards creating something big (think Angela Duckworth's book Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance). He also talked about the idea of not being great, but becoming great. In other words, doing the work and enjoying the journey. A concept I appreciate.

However, this wasn’t what made such an impact on me. It was a simple, two-word message that Tom shared that rocked me to my core. The words I’ll never forget: empty dreamer.

Boom! Those two words struck deep. I could almost swear the ceiling cracked open and a beam of light spotlighted me as I turned to the person next to me, eyes wide, exclaiming, "Wow! That's been me!"

That was the moment I realized the extent to which I had been merely fantasizing about numerous goals and ideas, without making the significant strides forward they truly deserved. Time had slipped through my fingers faster than I had realized. Those two words jolted me awake.

Being a Pisces, the stereotype holds true—I am a dreamer by nature. There’s simply no disputing it. However, I also have a strong drive and a deep desire for creative autonomy in my work, aiming to achieve great things. I'm a doer, and I’ve turned many of my aspirations into reality.

In fact, I’ve realized some significant dreams, including leaving the corporate world to start my entrepreneurial journey as a professional organizer 16 years ago, spending more time in Costa Rica each winter, and getting certified by Brendon Burchard as a High Performance Coach. These accomplishments were no small feats, and I fully acknowledge the effort it took to achieve them.

And yet there's an abundance of potential still untapped. I have numerous other goals and dreams that I've only lightly touched upon, if at all – hence, the profound impact of those two words. So, whether it comes from my Piscean nature or my driven nature, I still have many more goals and dreams in mind that I intend to make happen.

Can you relate?

What have you been dreaming of doing for more than a year? Or for as long as you can remember? What dream is lingering just beneath the surface waiting for clarity and action?

What’s that one dream you’d love to make come true?

Sit with that dream for a minute. Really settle into the vision. Ask yourself:

  • What’s keeping me from making my dream a reality?
  • What would it be like to work towards making this happen?
  • What’s keeping me from taking action, even smaller actions?

I know that when I sat with these questions that it didn’t take me very long to realize what had been keeping me from taking action – FEAR. Hardly a groundbreaking revelation, I know, but clarity is important.

The fear in this case came from the fact that a couple of these goals involved a whole new level of vulnerability for me. It meant stepping further out of my comfort zone and putting myself out there in a much bigger way. It meant opening myself up to the potential of feeling shame, embarrassment, imposter syndrome and fear of failure.

That’s right. I’m a coach whose job it is to challenge people to get out of their comfort zone to follow their truth and take action towards their dreams. And here I was realizing how long I'd been stuck dreaming without action from within my comfort zone!

Look, I’m human, so I'm on the same journey, too. My ultimate goal in my life is to inspire, guide and support others to create a life of their own design and to live life fully. It’s the very essence of who I am and what I believe my purpose in this lifetime to be. Part of helping others is sharing my journey, my struggles, and what’s worked for me and what hasn't. And that requires vulnerability.

Luckily, I am a coach, and I understand the consistent self-work and exploration that goes into it. I’m also lucky to have an amazing coach to challenge and push me on this. She keeps me accountable and asks me the tough/right questions so I can make real progress towards my goals. Sure, I could do it without her, but I know that it certainly helps me to stop dragging my feet and wasting time.

I want to make sure my dreams are full of aligned action – no more empty dreaming! How about you?

There’s no doubt that things can feel a little uncomfortable at times, but real growth is very likely going to be scary because it’s going to be outside of your comfort zone. And it’s always going to require you to take action.

A few more questions for you to consider:

  • How can I step out of the comfort zone of my habits and beliefs to make it happen?
  • How do I look my fears in the eye and take courageous action anyway?
  • What support do I need to help me achieve this goal?

I believe that one of the best places to start is by exploring the following questions. Grab a notebook or a journal and write down your answers. (In case you haven’t already with the other questions.) Maybe even make it the journal that you can take all the way through the journey of making your goals and dreams your reality, beginning with answers to these questions:

  • Make a list of the goals that you’ve already achieved. Big or small, it doesn't matter. Brain dump everything that comes to mind throughout your life. Maybe even ask your mom, your SO, and your friends too. They may remember a few things that you may have forgotten.
  • Celebrate all of your accomplishments! Seriously, I want you to feel the feels about everything that you’ve achieved so far. Remember the struggle and frustration you felt, the growth and everything you learned on the journey, and the satisfaction and fulfillment when you reached the goal. You’ve done it before, you can do it again!
  • What goals do you have that scare you? Dig deep. What goals are lurking beneath the surface just waiting to be seen and articulated? Get into the details of each goal and be specific about what it is that feels scary. For example, maybe the overall goal doesn’t scare you, but one particular aspect of it does.
  • What have you been spending time on lately? Have those things been just as important to you as your biggest goals and dreams? Or are they serving as a distraction? 
  • What’s the ultimate dream that you'd like to achieve? Get into the juicy details. What does it look like? Feel like? Smell like? The more details the better. Paint the picture of your future.
  • What actions can you take to get started? Who can help you? Who can support you without bias, judgment, a hidden agenda or limiting beliefs that may hold you back? Who will hold you accountable and push you outside of your comfort zone?

The journey you're on is uniquely yours. It's true, your path will intersect with and may be influenced by others, and your dreams may not turn out to be exactly what you anticipated. But it's up to you to take proactive steps toward making those dreams a reality. Every day offers an opportunity for meaningful steps forward. Are you taking these opportunities?

Pause for a moment and envision where you might find yourself if you remain in the same place a year from now, or even five years. This is the time to act on your dreams. If there's a vision tugging at your heart, it's there for a reason. Remember, time waits for no one – don't let it pass you by without taking action towards your dreams.

So, what will your first step be?

Enjoy the journey!

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