Everyone, at some point in their life, has dreamed of being somebody special, somebody big. Who hasn’t fantasized about being the one who hits the game-winning homer? Who hasn’t dreamed of being the homecoming queen? And how many times have we dreamed of being rich, or successful, or happy with our relationships?
Often, we dream big dreams and have great aspirations. Unfortunately, our dreams remain just that – dreams. And our aspirations easily collect dust in our attic. This is a sad turn of events in our life. Instead of experiencing exciting adventures in self-actualisation, we get caught up in the humdrum of living from day-to-day just barely existing. But you know what? Life could be so much better, if only we learned to aim higher.
The most common problem with setting goals is the word impossible. Most people get hung up thinking I can’t do this. It’s too hard. It’s too impossible. No one can do this. However, if everyone thought that, there would be no inventions, no innovations, and no breakthroughs in human accomplishment. Remember that scientists were baffled when they took a look at the humble bumblebee. Theoretically, they said, it was impossible for the bumblebee to fly. Fortunately for the bumble bee no one has told it so. So, fly it does. On the other hand, some people suffer from dreaming totally outrageous dreams and not acting on them. The result? Broken dreams, and tattered aspirations.
If you limit yourself with self-doubt, and self-limiting assumptions, you will never be able to break past what you deem impossible. If you reach too far out into the sky without working towards your goal, you will find yourself clinging on to the impossible dream.
Try this exercise. Take a piece of paper and write down some goals in your life. Under one header, list down things ‘you know you can do’. Under another header, write the things ‘you might be able to do.’ And under one more, list the things that are ‘impossible for you to do.’ Now look at all the headers that strive every day to accomplish the goals that are under things ‘you know you can do’. Check them when you are able to accomplish them. As you slowly are able to check all of your goals under that heading, try accomplishing the goals under the other header-the one that reads ‘you might be able to do.’ As if the items you wrote under things I could do are accomplished, you can move the goals that are under things that are ‘impossible for you to do’ to the list of things ‘you might be able to do.’ As you iterate through this process, you will find out that the goals you thought were impossible become easier to accomplish. And the impossible begins to seem possible after all.
You see, the technique here is not to limit your imagination. It is to aim high, and start working towards that goal little by little. However, it also is unwise to set a goal that is truly unrealistic. Those who just dream towards a goal without working hard end up disappointed and disillusioned.