A Colorado native, Peg Brantley is a lover of animals (and her husband), traveler and nester, who also appreciates a good bottle of wine. She loves to curl up with a good book—usually a crime novel of some kind. Her writing has come in second place and honorable mention in various contests as she works toward publication.
Peg spent over 25 years in corporate America, many of them running her own businesses. At any given time she could have helped you finance some real estate or sold you a bag of popcorn or a tube of lipstick. She’s unabashedly happy to have those years behind her. She and the love of her life make their home southeast of Denver, where Peg is busy at work on a new manuscript.
DREAM A LITTLE
by Peg Brantley
One day, I quit dreaming—and it took me over forty years to figure it out.
At some point, it became easier to turn my back on a dream, to let it fade, then to not be perfect each step on the way toward making that dream a reality. (Perfection is really a stupid concept, but that’s another topic.)
What I had, when I quit dreaming, were flat goals. Goals that belonged to other people. Goals I committed to for some reason: to keep my job; to make a loved one happy; because everyone else had a similar goal. They weren’t wrong, they just weren’t mine.
A few weeks ago, while writing my morning pages (if you haven’t read The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron, what are you waiting for?), I recognized the little girl who used to dream (with a certain amount of fearlessness) had stopped, and I began work to get her back.
I heard this as recently as last week: “Unless it’s specific, with a timeline, it’s not a goal. It’s just a dream.”
Just a dream.
A little belittling to dreams, if you ask me.
I’m not saying my life for forty years consisted of dull days and a series of tasks. Far from it. But I am saying I missed the richness—the possibility—dreams provide.
How do you keep a soul in your goals? Inspiration in your perspiration?
I’ve decided a dream is a little like a new idea for a novel. I toss it around for a while. Turn it over. Is it something I can build a whole story around—a life around? If it feels good, grabs me, then I begin to plot it out. Or, for those of you are more of a “live life by the seat of your pants” kind of person, dive in until your dream begins to take shape. If the idea has staying power, it’s full speed ahead.
The best goals begin as dreams. The best dreams are your dreams. Dreams that fill your soul. They demand you go after them. It’s your pursuit that makes the dream stronger and turns it into (gasp!) a goal.
Before you kick yourself for not accomplishing everything on your list in 2011, consider whether those things were your goals or someone else’s. And before you begin to contemplate what you would like to have happen in 2012, dream a little.