July 10, 2012 by Andy Whisenant
I was on Twitter the other day and for some reason, I had my account information pulled up. I looked at what I had written for my bio back in the day…
Friend, writer, dreamer, mac & cheese connoisseur, book reader, traveler, game show junkie.
While all that is true (and especially good if you can eat mac and cheese while watching a game show), I realized that I had a problem. Besides the fact that it’s an incomplete sentence (my grammar nerd alarms should have gone off), one word stood out.
See you may say that I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one. I dream about big ideas and big changes that could turn the world upside down. I dream about using my talents and skills to love people well. I dream about chasing after those passions that God has placed inside of me for a reason.
I dream about actually getting paid to write one day. I dream about traveling to crazy places and having epic adventures. I dream about ways to create better stories for kids like Stasch. I dream about being a part of a church that is radically changing the world.
I dream all the time. And it’s good. We need to dream. If we didn’t, this would be a really hard world to live in.
Dreamers started revolutions. Dreamers launched businesses, started social movements, and changed the status quo forever.
The difference between them and me? They didn’t just dream. They dreamed and then they did.
My problem, I think, is that I often get stuck in the messy, unpredictable, what-in-the-world-am-I-doing process of moving from dream to did. When things move from dream to did, my reputation is on the line, my dream is open for criticism from all sides, and there is a very real possibility that I will completely crash and burn.
And as I move from dream to did, I might totally fail. That’s a very real possibility.
I could take more risks. I could embrace the uncertainty, the what-ifs, and the how-is-this-ever-going-to-work-outs. I could learn what it means to live fully alive.
If I was any kind of good blogger, this is the part where I would give you three action steps (even better if they formed an acronym or had a hint of alliteration), but that’s just not going to happen (sorry to disappoint). I think the way we move from dream to did is to just start moving. To keep writing when you have few readers and even fewer comments on your blog. To keep playing music when there’s still no record deal. To chase after that seemingly out of reach job that you would absolutely love. To continue to create art, even if it’s misunderstood or unappreciated. To move against the grain towards what you know is waiting for you on the other end.
Living a life fully engaged and full of whimsy and the kind of things that love does is something most people plan to do, but along the way they just kind of forget. Their dreams become one of those “we’ll go there next time” deferrals. The sad thing is, for may there is no “next time” because passing on the chances to cross over is an overall attitude toward life rather than a single decision. They need a change of attitude, not more opportunities.
So here’s to a change of attitude. I’ve since updated my bio to say a little something like this…
What about you? How are you moving from dream to did? Help a brother out!