Wednesday, August 14, 2013

What's Holding You Back from Dreaming?

I was having a conversation with my husband about career paths recently, and when I asked him what he would do if he could do anything, I could almost feel his creative synapses tense up and shrivel like frightened sea anemones.

"I can't just do anything I want because I have to make money," he told me.

To a degree, this was true. We have a mortgage we'd like to keep paying, so we both need to continue bringing in income. However, that reality shouldn't serve a gigantic, immovable boulder that stands in the path to dreaming about different options.

"Take money out of the equation and just let yourself daydream about what would be the most fun," I encouraged.

He couldn't do it.

I was kind of astounded. It's not like I was asking him to make a commitment to becoming a carpenter or a professional barbecuer. I was just inviting him to relax into some creative thinking. To open his mind and follow the tracks that felt most exciting.

It occurred to me that if he had this roadblock keeping him from daydreaming, other people probably did, too. (Including myself.)

But dreaming is supposed to be a no holds barred, delicious activity. A gift from our creative minds.

If I dig into my path-blocking boulders, I find thoughts like, "I'm not a good public speaker" or "I don't even know where to begin with that" sitting in my way.

In order to let myself explore options that could be the starting points for something really wonderful in my future, I have to gently tell my rational brain to set the boulders aside and just indulge possibility.

In a daydream, there are no rules.

I don't have to be a good public speaker—or maybe I AM one. It's my daydream, after all!

Imagine what you might discover about your desires if you rolled the roadblocks out of the way and gave yourself permission to really, truly, creatively daydream about career changes, relationships, or even just edits to your day-to-day routine. You don't have to commit to doing any of it. You don't have to nail down a plan of action. Just bask in the possibility for a bit. Let yourself think, "Wouldn't it be awesome if..."

You might find out something new about yourself. Or even put your finger on a fork in the road you'd like to follow.

So tell me, what defeating thoughts are standing in the way of your daydreaming freedom? And where might your mind go if you let yourself move past those, even for a few minutes?