A few days ago I talked about making a Dream Board. So today I’d like to elaborate a little more about why it’s important to have dreams to work toward. I’d like to begin by sharing with you part of a talk given by Zig Ziglar about dreams and goals.
“Several years ago they did an experiment with a number of college students. And in this particular experiment they let them go to sleep and they hooked these brain machines up to them. With these brain machines they could determine precisely within a matter of seconds when the student went to sleep. Then they could tell when that student started to dream. And as the student would start to dream, they would awaken him or her. And then they’d let them go back to sleep, and that was no problem, but when they started to dream they would awaken them again. And with those brainwave machines they can tell exactly when they start to dream.
Photograph by Charmaine Swart
At the end of one night of this kind of treatment, many of the students were nervous and fidgety. At the end of two nights of this kind of treatment, where they had a reasonable amount of sleep, but no dreaming, they became very irritable and very short and very cross. At the end of just three nights of a reasonable amount of sleep, but no dreaming, they could tell that some of them were headed for some psychological difficulties and so what they did is they aborted the experiment. Now about 24 hours later, most of the students were back to normal. Within a week, all of them had returned 100%. But the experiment proved something very conclusive and that’s this… When you’re asleep lady’s and gentlemen, you need your dreams. I’m here to tell you that when you’re wide awake, you also need your dreams.” -Zig Ziglar
I couldn’t agree more! Dreaming while we sleep is an integral part of our physical wellbeing, regardless of whether or not we remember those dreams once we’ve woken up. Likewise, having dreams and ambitions in life is essential to our overall wellbeing. Dreams give us purpose and direction, but even more important than that, they fulfill a need deep within each of us to become the person we were always meant to be. Dreams help shape and mold us into our true selves and our best selves. They carry us through our life’s journey with hope and perseverance.
I want to liken our need for having dreams to Rapunzel’s dream that drives the story behind Disney’s Tangled. Every year Rapunzel sees floating lights in the sky on her birthday. She makes it her dream to see those lights in person someday. This dream drives her to leave the tower she’d been a prisoner in for her entire life, and in pursuing her dream, she discovers who she really is.
Rapunzel: I’ve been looking out of a window for eighteen years, dreaming about what I might feel like when those lights rise in the sky. What if it’s not everything I dreamed it would be?
Flynn Rider: It will be.
Rapunzel: And what if it is? What do I do then?
Flynn Rider: Well, that’s the good part I guess. You get to go find a new dream.
Reaching toward our dreams can sometimes be a little scary. It might mean getting outside of our comfort zone, but that’s how some of the real growth in our lives can occur. Sitting idly by waiting for life to just happen to us, instead of shaping our life into what we want it to become, is a real travesty. I believe each of us have something very special to offer this world. Something no one else will ever be able to do quite like we do. Each human life is a precious gift, and each of us have the potential to add something truly wonderful to this world for having been a part of it.
True, not everyone will share the special gifts they have. Some will pass away far to young, others will let life slip past without ever realizing the potential they carry buried deep within. Some may even recognize their potential, but let fear or apathy prevent them from blessing the world with what is beautiful and unique to them. But you’re here, and you’re reading this, so my hope for you is that the world will be forever changed in a positive way because you were a part of it.
I want to add one last thought from one of my favorite motivational speakers of all time. Our dreams won’t be realized all at once. Most of them will take a lot of time and effort on our part to make come true. But, if we persevere, refusing to give up, in due time we can make our dreams a reality.
“Never give up on a dream just because of the time it will take to accomplish it. The time will pass anyway; we might just as well put that passing time to the best possible use” ― Earl Nightingale