Life Is But a Dream: 5 Steps to Living Your Dreams

Makes your dreams reality by pursuing them wholeheartedlyDo you remember the nursery rhyme that said, “Row, row, row your boat gently down the stream. Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily, life is but a dream”? This round-style nursery rhyme dates back to the 1800s, but its message still rings true: Life is a dream.

I often say that we have two lives: the one we live and the one we dream about living. When I ask women questions about their dreams, they are often stumped, stuck and unsure. They find it difficult to recall their "little girl" dreams—the dreams they talked about when they were rowing their boats down the stream.

Life has an interesting way of invading our dreams and taking over. Through experiences and challenges, life can cast shadows of doubt, uncertainty and fear on us that take years or even decades to overcome, if we overcome at all.

We grow up with dreams dancing in our heads and hearts, but somehow those dreams get crushed, and they bow in submission to life and its challenges. We give up on the things we hold so dear. But even in our giving up, we never let them go. We never forget our dreams and aspirations. They sit in special places in our heads and hearts until the "perfect time."

The secret to living your dreams is that there is no perfect time. As long as you live on this earth, you will experience challenges, setback and obstacles. You are going to encounter difficult people and crazy situations. Some days you're going to want to throw in the towel. Some days you will just want to wake up only to roll over and toss the covers back over your head. There are times when you would rather live vicariously through Olivia Pope than to fix your own life.

But every morning you wake up is another day to live your dreams.

Every new day is the opportunity to swing your feet out of bed and pursue the things that make your heartbeat and your pressure rise. What are those things? What are the dreams and desires you have buried inside that no one knows? What are the dreams you had before life's adversities busted on the scene and demanded your undivided attention? Where are they now?

Now is the time to reclaim your dreams and bring them to life. Am I saying that it's going to be easy? Of course not, but it will certainly be worth it. Living your dreams takes courage, strength and tenacity. You need the courage to decide that you're going to live your dreams, no matter what. You need the strength to endure when things get tough, and you need the tenacity to keep moving forward even when things don't turn out the way you planned.

Dream living ain't easy, but it sure is worth it!

Here are five steps you can use to start living your dreams:

1. Desire: How do you want to feel? 2. Dreams: What are your real dreams? 3. Define: What will your life look like when you are living your dreams? 4. Design: Create the goals you need to achieve in order to live your dreams. 5. Do: Take the action you need to take to bring your dreams to life.

Your dreams are waiting for you to put them into motion. Dreams actualized don't happen on their own. It's not enough to have dreams swirling around in your head and heart—you've got to put your hands to work.

So, row, row, row your boat of life gently down the stream because despite the stuff that life will sling your way, life is but a dream.