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Don't Quit Your Day Dream: A journey back to your essence

Parinaz Shams| Embrace Your Essence

Last month, on a road trip through the countryside, I saw these words painted on the side of a building: "Don't quit your day dream".

They caught my attention, and I couldn't resist pulling over to snap a photo with the wall.

It was a simple yet profound reminder of something I had lost touch with over the years: my dreams.

Losing Touch with Dreams

For a long time, I was so caught up in becoming somebody—being serious, busy, and successful—that I lost my willingness to dream.

I was focused on achieving, striving, and meeting expectations, but somewhere along the way, I forgot about the dreams that once fueled my soul.

A mentor and friend once told me, "You don’t need to see the whole path. Just take one step in front of the other through the dark. Then keep doing that."

To me, this is similar concept to "don't quit your daydream", basically suggesting that we don't have to have everything figured out, we just have to know who we are at our core. And our dreams help us do that.

At the time, I was at rock bottom, covered in shame and guilt because my life wasn't going as planned.

I felt like a failure in the eyes of my parents and myself. I had definitely quit my daydream.

I thought I was damaged, with no idea how to come back from what I felt were a series of bad choices professionally and in my relationships.

But what I didn't realize then is that these struggles, causing darkness and creating the 'rock bottom' effect, were actually there to reveal a path toward the light.

I've learned that darkness is a path to light.

We all have to go through times of uncertainty, pain, and inner turmoil to gain the insight that will lead to the next chapter of greater peace and joy.

I started to feel alive again when I started dreaming again—when I asked myself important questions I never made space for before.

If you're struggling, confused, or feel lost, consider this: "What makes me feel alive?" And allow yourself to do a little bit more of that.

Your dreams are your desires made into tangible and recognizable form for your mind to understand.

But we often don't let ourselves dream, and that's the core of our unhappiness, dissatisfaction, need for perfection, and unreasonably high standards we set for ourselves.

We diminish our dreams and say they're silly, that we're too old, too busy, or don't have time. The real issue is that we don't let ourselves dream.

But, when you don't quit your daydream, you essentially commit to never quitting on your true self.

Why Do we Kill Our Own Dreams and Quit On Ourselves?

1)Most of us sabotage our dreams out of fear—fear of failure and fear of disappointing others.

We've been conditioned to believe that success means being good at everything, so the thought of failing at our dreams is terrifying.

2) We fear disappointing people and tarnishing our "perfect" persona.

Dreams require us to be bold, step outside the norms of our life, and that means disappointing people.

Yet, we are so afraid to disappoint people because it will tarnish our good person persona that we are so deeply attached to. So we stuff our dreams away.

We stop dreaming because life and conditioning have told us that we are not good enough as we already are.

We build a good person persona to be worthy of love, and our dreams often fundamentally conflict with that persona.

The Courage to Disappoint

Here's the thing: It takes courage to disappoint cultural or familial norms.

It takes courage to pursue your dreams because they often are not what others understand or approve.

It's in allowing yourself to disappoint these norms that you find your true strength and discover what you're really made of.

This is the sacred process of embracing your essence, of embracing who you truly are at your core, beyond the expectations and judgments of others.

It's about honoring your innermost desires and dreams, even if they don't align with what society expects of you.

The Importance of Embracing Your Dreams

Embracing your dreams is critical to your happiness, success, love, and longevity.

When you pursue your dreams, you are living authentically, and this authenticity brings a deep sense of fulfillment and joy.

You are also more likely to be successful because you are following your passion and purpose.

Furthermore, embracing your dreams allows you to form deeper, more meaningful connections with others.

When you are true to yourself, you attract people who resonate with your authentic self, leading to more fulfilling relationships.

So, I invite you to reconnect with your dreams. They are really important to your well-being - health, happiness, and success.

The problem is not with our dreams. The problem is that we've allowed ourselves to stop dreaming freely and fully.

Allow yourself to dream, to desire, to be filled with passion and excitement for what could be.

Your dreams are not just items on a to-do list; they are the essence of who you are, waiting to be acknowledged and embraced.

Maybe you already have an idea of how you can reconnect with your dreams. But, if not, here are some suggestions.

Daring to Dream: Embracing Risk and Self-Empowerment

Daring to dream is not a passive act; it's an active choice to give our dreams space in our consciousness and to be courageous enough to let them guide us in making choices and building a life based on them.

However, this act of embracing our dreams is not without its risks.

Author Julia Cameron, in her book "The Artist's Way," beautifully captures the essence of this risk-taking when she writes, "there is something enlivening about expanding our self-definition, and a risk does exactly that.

Selecting challenge and meeting it creates a sense of self-empowerment that becomes the ground for further successful challenges."

Expanding Our Self-Definition

When we dare to dream, we are expanding our self-definition.

We are acknowledging that there is more to us than meets the eye, and that our potential is vast and limitless.

This expansion of self can be both exhilarating and terrifying, as it requires us to step outside of our comfort zones and into the unknown.

The Risk of Choosing Challenge

Choosing to pursue our dreams is a risk in itself. It requires us to face uncertainty, rejection, and failure.

However, it is in the face of these challenges that we truly grow and evolve. Each challenge we overcome becomes a stepping stone to greater self-empowerment and success.

Self-Empowerment Through Challenge

Meeting challenges head-on creates a sense of self-empowerment that becomes the foundation for further success.

Each time we take a risk and see it through, we are proving to ourselves that we are capable of more than we ever imagined.

This sense of empowerment propels us forward, encouraging us to take on even greater challenges and achieve even greater heights.

Daring to dream is not for the faint of heart. It requires courage, resilience, and a willingness to take risks.

However, the rewards of daring to dream are immeasurable.

By expanding our self-definition, embracing challenge, and empowering ourselves through risk-taking, we can build a life that is truly fulfilling and aligned with our deepest desires.

So, I encourage you to dare to dream. Give your dreams the space they deserve in your consciousness, and be courageous enough to let them guide you in creating a life that is uniquely yours.

The risks you take will only serve to empower you and propel you toward a future of endless possibilities.

A Path Back to Dreaming:

  1. Pull out blank paper and a pen and title it: "My life if nothing mattered" and then write down everything that your life would include, what you would do, how you'd do it, and more.

  2. Write down 3-5 things that you've always loved.

  3. Write down 3-5 things you've always been good at.

  4. Get playful again.

  5. Laugh.

  6. Call a loved one.

  7. Garden (or just stick your hands in dirt).

  8. Read a great book (if you don't know any, ask around).

  9. Surround yourself with Dreamers (I've got one you can join, if you're looking!)

If you're ready to explore this further, I invite you to connect with me on the podcast:

Together, let's rediscover the power of dreaming and embrace the life we truly desire.

Let's dream together.

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