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Disillusioned Dreamers


By Linda Sapadin, Ph.D
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If you’re a dreamer, you have many outstanding qualities. You’re creative, imaginative; you may even be a visionary – with new notions, new insights. So what could be bad?

Often you fall in love with an idea but skip over taking the action to make that idea come to life! Without dedicated work, your creativity goes nowhere, leaving you feeling discouraged and disappointed.

Know that even Einstein couldn’t rely solely on his super-power brain. He attributed much of his success to his work habits, saying “It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with problems longer.”

Here are three telltale signs of a disillusioned dreamer procrastinator:

  • Do I think a lot about what I’d like to accomplish but rarely get projects off the ground?
  • Do I wait for opportunities to drop in my lap rather than take an active "go get ‘em" stance?
  • Do I let lots of time drift by with passive activities like watching TV, social media, playing games or simply daydreaming?

Eleanor Roosevelt said, “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” But it’s not so beautiful if you spend a multitude of your time dreaming, minimal time doing.

Many dreamers indulge in "magical thinking," believing that one day great things will happen for them. Living in a world of lovely fantasies may seem desirous, yet it’s no fun if you live in your dreams instead of living out your dreams.

Though you may spend much time thinking about what you want to accomplish, actually doing the work is another matter. You may be fuzzy about what exactly needs to be done or about what it takes to go from A to Z.

“I have lots of great ideas” said one of my favorite dreamers, “but somehow my ideas never see the light of day.” It took a while for this gifted gent to appreciate the bottom line: No action; no attainable ambitions. This is no way for a creative person to live. You deserve better. It’s time for you to create a future that will come true.

Here are 3 ideas to transform you from a disillusioned dreamer to a triumphant achiever:

1. Ground your thinking

Do this by asking relevant questions that begin with: Who, What, When, Where and How.

  • Who might be able to assist me in bringing my ideas to fruition?
  • What type of position could I apply for?
  • When will I have time to do the work?
  • Where would I be able to work?
  • How can this project aid my career aspirations?

Answering these questions will help you convert a vague dream into a solid step‑by‑step action plan for achieving your goals.

2. Distinguish between dreams and goals.

Dreams are different from goals. Goals require you to put in time and effort in a series of structured steps. So, if you’re picturing winning an Oscar or being hired for your ‘dream’ job, know that such dreams require work to make them come true.

“The key factor separating geniuses from the merely accomplished is not a divine spark. It’s not I.Q., a generally bad predictor of success. Instead, it’s deliberate practice.” ~ David Brooks

3. Focus on the pride you’ll feel when you complete a task.

Dreamers have a reputation for focusing on how they feel at the moment, rather than on the work that needs to be done for future satisfaction. Stay focused on your feelings too often and it’ll be at the expense of your accomplishments and confidence.

It may not be your first choice to push yourself to work harder. However, in the long run, the confidence and courage you’ll gain from achieving your goals will be worth it. And I wouldn’t be surprised, if once your dreams become your goals, you'll start racking up success after success!

Copyright © 2019: Linda Sapadin, Ph.D
Linda Sapadin is a psychologist and personal coach in private practice who specializes in helping people enrich their lives, enhance their relationships and overcome self-defeating patterns of behavior. For more information about her work, contact her by email or visit her website at PsychWisdom.
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