I dream big. And I work hard. I dream bigger. And I work harder. And the bigger I dream, the harder I work. In fact, see the other post from this month. I can dream for 3 years and work for just as long. But I do get exhausted along the way.
So, one of the girls I work with was like, “Dr. P–Can you tackle dreams vs. goals for me, in the next blog?”
Well OF course I can. Dreams are my peanut butter and Goals are my jam….
But here we are, considering the difference and similarities between dreams and goals. Here’s my take:
Dreams are things that come to you. Goals are things you work towards.
Dreams are like feelings, they fleet or are states. Goals are experiences.
Dreams are many. Goals are few.
Dreams are wants. Goals are DO.
Dreams are the combinations of feelings, vision, desires, hopes, passion. And goals are action based - measurable, standard with observable steps.
Dreams are fun. Goals are too.
I’m working with new Financial Advisors. Clay and JB. Love them! I’m working with them because my former financial advisor, Ian Persuad, was killed last year. It's crazy how life forms after tragedy. I miss Ian…and at the same time, I value and appreciate Clay and JB.
Ok, I got off topic. But, here we go.
In one of our meetings, Clay and JB said, “Tell us your biggest financial dreams! What do you want?” (Not what do you want to see or how are you going to get there…just what do you want). So, I started talking, and talking some more, and talking more and more and more until I realized that I was dreaming real big with no clear direction on how I was going to get there. I threw out numbers, material possessions, lifestyle thoughts, retirement destinations, and wrapped all of it in…my feelings. I didn’t realize how much passion I had about these things…but I did.
And then, I said “Dang, how are WE going to get there?”
Key words: How, WE, going, there
How: A dream transforms to a goal when we create a plan.
We: There is usually a need for an accountability partner especially because there is a process to moving from a dream to a goal, e.g.- Feeling, Thought, Action or Motivation, Reinforcement, Discipline or Vision, Research, Application. In these light examples, there are points when we can’t do it alone. We need a cheerleader, a reinforcer, some encouragement, something….
Going: This is an active verb that is moving us towards something. We have to move. We have to do something. A dream transforms to a goal when there is action put to it.
There: What is the actual goal? Is it to buy a house or to have money to buy a house? Is it to lose weight or to get healthy? Is it to seal the deal with a contract or to position yourself to be seen and known? Is it to go to a specific place for vacation or just to see something new? Once we know what the actual goal is….we can plan for it. We can make SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Time-Oriented) goals, firm objectives, and step-by-step actions.
Here are a couple of dreams that I had…that I turned into goals:
Dream: Reignite the “family feel” within my company. Goal: Increase our company chill time. Three virtual fun meetings/sessions, one in-person activity, two in-person professional developments.
Dream: See the world and visit 30 countries by the time I am 50. Goal: Identify 3 countries on three continents that I am curious about visiting. Price them out and determine which year, which country–makes sense. Then save $$!
Dream: Watch both of my kids excel in college and graduate. Goal: Connect them with three college resources. Take them on three college tours. Ensure they know how to write letters and advocate for themselves if they need help in class, on campus, or with financial aid.
And sure, there are more. But these are a few ways I’ve dreamed…and transformed them into a goal. Does this make sense? If not, hit me up so we can talk about it. It’s an open invitation. And, if it does make sense, which of your dreams are ready to transform into a goal? How can I help?