How To Breathe Life Back Into Your Dreams by Derek Clark, Motivational Speaker and Author of Six Books.
At some point in your life you no doubt had a dream. Maybe it was to be a doctor, fireman, astronaut, professional athlete, race-car driver, artist, President of the United States, or a rock star. Even if you don’t have a dream right now, you did when you were a child, because every child dreams. Even as adults, we dream. It may be a dream of getting out of an impoverished area, getting a better job, or being rich. Everything is attainable if you focus on what you want and take the action to move towards that goal. Everything is motion, you are either moving forwards or backwards. There is no standing still. When you stand still, you are not moving forward, and if you are not moving forward you are going backwards. Set your sights on the stars, not the sewage.
Many people believe that life has boxed them in. In a way, they are trapped in their own mental prisons. They tell me “I just can’t think outside the box”. I love how Walt Disney responded to some people who said, “Think outside the box.” He replied, “No! Don’t think outside the box! Once you say that, you’ve established that there is a box.” Walt Disney never acknowledged limits to the imagination, and he turned his fantasies into an inspiring reality. If you can dream it, you can do it. An active imagination is the key to happiness.
Imagination is a potent force. And when mixed with courageous action, it can change the world. When I want to be mindful of imagination’s immense potential, I don’t have to go far. All I do is look at the everyday objects surrounding me. It’s easy to take commonplace items for granted—they’re easy to come by and we see them all the time. But remember, at one time literally none of the useful things around us existed. They could hardly even be dreamt of.
We should all be curious and inventive like a child, eager to explore the realms of our mind and act upon the magic we find there. Imagination is in essential in so many different ways, it’s hard to overemphasize how important it is. From inventions to problem-solving, to inspiring faith and putting a smile on a sad person’s face, imaginative vision is one of our greatest assets as human beings.
Look around you and count the miracles. Electricity was discovered, harnessed, controlled, and distributed to my home so I can merely flip a switch and the lights go on—that my friends is miracle! Central heating, power grids, gasoline, toilets, phones, faxes, computers, pencils and artificial hearts. All these seemingly disparate technologies have one thing in common: the people who devised them never quit. It was their life’s purpose to think creatively and break through the walls of the infamous “box.” These inventors were all amazing, and truly rock! They shared one common motto: Never Give Up! If anybody thinks imagination doesn’t affect the world, you need only point them to a post-it note or a refrigerator. If they laugh, it’s only because they’ve become desensitized to the wonders they see every day.
If you are inspired to create or invent something, you must find a way to bring it to life. Be a builder, not just a dreamer. Every amazing project once started as a “mere” dream, and may have seemed impossible. The determination of individuals and groups has shown, however, that what seems impossible can be accomplished with the right amount of effort. There will always be nay-sayers in the world; people who tell you it can’t be done, or whose first reaction to some idea is to scrunch their face up skeptically and say, “Impossible!” Ignore them. You have a legion of yes-sayers to look up to.
I have no doubt that everyone who has introduced something new and fantastic to the world had at least one person encouraging them to throw in the towel and let their dreams wither away into dust. Do you really think these “nattering nabobs of negativity” are the types of people who make history?
Aside from others, you cannot let that little voice in your head tell you that you’re not good enough. Shut it up! The worst critic in our lives is all too often ourselves. Be careful how you speak to yourself. You may just talk yourself out of a great discovery, job, partner, spouse, education, or experience. And don’t lose heart if you feel alone with your dreams and aspirations. It’s great if we have the support of peers and loved ones, but this support network does not exist for everyone. Your dreams may isolate you to some degree. That is when you must remember that many prominent creators labored in solitude, or didn’t receive immediate acknowledgment for their efforts.
I am going to keep it real… If you want to be successful financially, emotionally, physically and spiritually, you will have to sacrifice TV, sleep, friends, video games, partying with your friends and the many other distractions that are meant to suck up your time and steal your dreams. Find your creative zone and stay in there for as long as you can. I believe you are spiritually connected to your authentic self during those times. Your purpose becomes very evident when you shut out all of the distractions and the mind noise of this world. By listening to the still small voice of your intuition, you begin to open up to new ideas and hope. Your life opens up to new promise in a direction that you never expected.
If you told me seven years ago that I would write 6 books and be a top ranked motivational speaker, I wouldn’t have believed you. It wasn’t what I was looking for at the moment. I owned a very successful corporation and thought I had life planned out. Plans changed when my intuition guided me to write my first book “I Will Never Give Up” based on my life growing up in foster care. I took action by following my intuition. In a moment of healing and shutting out all of the noise in my heard, I heard the voice saying that I needed to write a book based on my life growing up in foster care. Once I did, everything fell into place but it wasn’t easy. I had to do my part by listening, taking action and making sure that I followed through with persistent determination. I have found that by fulfilling my life’s purpose and being true to myself, I can live an authentic life and share a message of never giving up!
In order to breathe life back into your dreams, you must have the right perspective and have the tools to succeed. I’ve had the great pleasure of meeting Brian Tracy who is one of the top corporate motivational speakers on goal setting. I use his great system so there is no need for me to reinvent the wheel.
Here is his seven step process for setting and achieving goals.
- Decide exactly what you want in each area of your life. Be specific!
- Write it down, clearly and in detail.
- Set a specific deadline. If it is a large goal, break it down into sub-deadlines and write them down in order.
- Make a list of everything you can think of that you are going to have to do to achieve your goal. As you think of new items, add them to your list.
- Organize the items on your list into a plan by placing them in the proper sequence and priority.
- Take action immediately on the most important thing you can do on your plan. This is very important!
- Do something every day that moves you toward the attainment of one or more of your important goals. Maintain the momentum!
About Motivational Speaker and Author Derek Clark
Derek Clark’s life is one of resilience and redemption. As a child he suffered unthinkable child abuse, abandonment and emotional distress before being turned over to the psychiatric hospital at age five. His 13 years in the San Francisco bay area foster care system reflected an early life of humiliation, aggression, emotional distress, overwhelming anxiety and being wrongfully labeled. Eventually, with the help of foster parents and mentors he defied the artificial limitations imposed upon him. Derek knows first hand how to cope with adversity and overcoming hardship. His past has never held him back from accomplishing what he set his heart and mind to.
Derek is an inspiring speaker/trainer, a featured expert on CNN Headline News, The Ricki Lake Show and The Steve Harvey TV Show. Google ranks Derek the #1 “inspiring motivational speaker” out of 51 million listings. He is the author of six books including “Never Limit Your Life” and the “I Will Never Give Up” book series.