Maybe you came upon this post because a loved one or colleague shared this. Maybe you were searching about dreams, or motivation, or how to get out of a low phase in life. Maybe you came from Infidreams.com or the Infidreams iOS app because you weren’t yet convinced about the power of dreams. Whatever the reason, if you’re wondering how to make your life better, not convinced yet about why you should dream, or trying to figure out how to achieve all your dreams while not getting overwhelmed by them, this post is meant for you.
Here’s my story about how dreams helped me turn my life around for the better, and how they can help you too…
There was a phase in my life, where I felt low, demotivated, and uninspired about the future. Those who know me or have even interacted a little bit with me will tell you I am usually anything but low. But in fact, I was. I was unhappy about the status quo, the current way certain things were in my life and also in the world around me. I wanted to have a happy, healthy, fulfilling life, both for myself, and for my loved ones. Who doesn’t? I also hoped for and desired success in my professional life, in my entrepreneurial career. And while things were going well seemingly on the business front, I wasn’t happy. Additionally, every time I read news about bad things happening in the world around me, such as poor air quality, discrimination, crime, poverty, illness, terrorism etc., I and my wife felt worried about the kind of world our children and our families and loved ones were facing.
Does any of this sound familiar to you too? If yes, keep on reading.
To try to come out of this tough and challenging phase, I took some time off to introspect. I cut out things, situations and people that stressed me. I focused on caring for myself, being with people who gave me the space and support to heal, and doing things that I enjoyed. Sometimes that meant doing nothing at all! But what I did alot of, was sleep, and think. So unconsciously and consciously, I was introspecting and pausing to reflect.
I realised through this period that when I really thought about it, when I really dug deep, I wasn’t completely negative about everything. I did have hopes for the future. I had dreams for myself, for my loved ones, for my career, and for the world around me, and for which I was willing to work hard. These dreams inspired me, and motivated me. These dreams gave me a strong sense of purpose. They also gave me the energy and strength and clarity I needed, to do the things that would bring me out of my low mindset. And just like that the same mind which felt low and uninspired felt happy and motivated. The same body that didn’t feel like getting out of bed, was going for a walk and exercising everyday. The same spirit that seemed broken and sad, was laughing and enjoying now.
I realised then, the power of dreams, and I hope you do too. Dreaming, and thinking about your dreams can help you visualise a better future, inspire you and motivate you about the time to come. These dreams could be personal ones that you have for yourself or your loved ones. They could be professional ones you have for your career or business. And they could be social dreams that you have for the world and community around us.
It isn’t just my realisation. Now, everywhere I read or look, I see great leaders and thinkers, like the American civil liberties stalwart Martin Luther King Jr (“I have a dream!”) and former President of India, APJ Abdul Kalam, also a great scientist, statesman and poet (“You must have a dream, then you will be successful” and “Dream, dream, dream!”), have all talked about the importance of dreams, and through their own dreams, galvanised the world and lives around them into something much better.
There is a flip side too, of course. We can get overwhelmed by our dreams, especially if we are unable to, or unwilling to, put in all the work needed to make all those dreams come true. We spread ourselves too thin, we get stressed, and we eventually burn out. Also, sometimes we don’t know what is needed to be done to achieve a dream. Or we lack the confidence that we will be able to achieve our dreams. In such situations, we proactively decide not to dream, to prevent ourselves from getting hurt in case our dreams don’t come true.
I’ve been there and done that too. In some moments when I was at my creative peaks, I committed to multiple ambitions and unknowingly joined the rat race of trying to achieve too much, all at once. What started off as enthusiasm and excitement about doing a lot, developed into a head ache and a struggle. I was spread too thin, and in the end, nothing got done, especially not the things that were probably most important to me! In some other cases, hurt after a big rejection or seeing one of my dream get shattered, I felt low and decided not to dream at all. But the result was that I kept wallowing in the past, thinking about the good days gone by, and not realising I have things to be thankful for today, and other dreams to look forward to in the future.
Does this sound familiar? Here’s how I ensured that I didn’t just dream so that I could become inspired and motivated but also ensured that I stayed happy by managing the pursuit of my dreams in an effective and practical manner.
I tapped into the very obvious fact that we’re not rats! We’re human. We are quite capable and intelligent. And we have the ability of introspection and insight. The first thing I did was ensure I don’t get sucked into a stressful rat race. I chose to pause periodically and reflect on my life, gathering my thoughts instead of just doing task after task, seeing the days, weeks and months simply fly by. This helped me course correct when I was going off-track and refocus my energies to try to achieve dreams that were really important to me.
Pausing to think also helped me remember lessons about how to be practical and pragmatic while trying to realise my dreams and goals. Something I was taught once was that one can probably achieve everything one dreams, but definitely not all at the same time. Another thing I was taught was that one should try to keep learning, and ask for help and guidance whenever things become too difficult to handle. No one achieves everything on their own. But seemingly impossible things can be achieved through collaboration, discussion, teamwork and by getting or giving a helping hand. So a practical plan of action to achieve my dreams, and then consistently and systematically going about trying to achieve them, combined with asking for help and suggestions from the right people at the right time, helped me and will continue to help me achieve all my dreams, in due course of time, without life becoming hell!
What do you think? I’d love to hear your own thoughts in the comments section below.
P.S – A little bit more about me, in case you are curious. I am an engineer and entrepreneur, whose mission is to make the world better by building things using technology that positively impact the lives of millions of people.
Since I strongly believe that dreams can make all our lives much much better, I have spent some time literally coding, and codifying my thinking, into an app. I call it Infidreams (short for Infinite Dreams), and it will help make all your infinite dreams come true. That’s my hope, at least! If you want to try it out, sign up here. It’s completely free. I’d love your feedback and inputs as I iterate on the app to build something super useful and valuable for you and everyone else. I’ve written about the Infidreams app in a later post.