“Dreams don’t work unless you do”  – A simple yet powerful quote by John C.Maxwell which sums up the essence of life and its goals. Everyone dreams of bigger and better things but not everyone achieves it. The difference between winners and losers is often the perseverance that goes into achieving that dream.

What is a dream?

A dream is often some goal that you aspire to achieve. It could be a well- paying job, a fantastic business sales target, a dream house, a role in a movie, a place on the national cricket or soccer team. It could be anything but it will always be something which you desire to achieve, something which will make you really happy.

Have a clear Vision

There is simply no moving forward in the absence of a vision.  A vision is similar to a compass for it sets you off in the direction of your dreams. When you have identified your final destination, all you need to do is move towards it. A dream is your vision but simply having a vision doesn’t help unless it is backed by action. We often hear discussions about the power of positive affirmation and visual manifestation of dreams. However, the most important component needed to convert vision into reality is Action. Vision needs to be backed by actions for it to be converted into tangible results.

Creative Tension = Vision – Current Reality

If a person is at Point A and wishes to reach Point B, what does he/she need to do? He would need to move physically from Point A towards Point B using the best route possible to reach the destination. There is no way that Point A will magically change into Point B while he remains immobile. Consider Point A as the Current Reality and Point B as the Dream or Goal you wish to reach. Now, consider the best path to use for the journey from A to B. There are no easy routes or magic wands in life which would get you to Point B in a hurry. If that happens it would simply mean that dreams or goals were too easy. Normally there should always be a reasonable gap between Current Reality and Dream or Vision which is called Creative Tension. Unless creative tension is in place and perceptible there will be no urge to stretch oneself to achieve the dream. This brings us back to the original quote – Dreams don’t work unless you do.

Achieve one milestone at a time

Once your final destination is identified in your mind, it is important to plan the steps you will take to get you moving in the right direction. Breaking the journey into doable milestones makes sense as it will reduce the ardour and make the progress enjoyable.

It is important to remember that only the person who lasts the whole journey realizes his dream. Stopping midway or turning back is never a recommended option.

Now that the dream is in place, how do you make it a reality?

It is all well to have lofty dreams but unless they are converted to reality, the pleasure gained is transient.  Your dreams won’t come true if there is no room for an opportunity of them coming true.

Look out for opportunities

You need to keep your eyes and ears open because opportunities are all around, we just need to be ready to take them and make your dreams come true. To achieve your dream, you have to follow it with enthusiasm and perseverance.

Improve your skill sets

Suppose you want a well-paying job. Then, you would need to obtain the qualifications required for the job. Similarly, to be a movie star, you need to work on your acting skills. To be a national level sports person, it requires dedication and practice of a very high level. Let us come to the case of an entrepreneur. An entrepreneur is someone who risks his time and money to follow his dream. It is a risky path that he pursues with no guarantee of success. Yet he moves on for he believes that his dream is achievable.

Quitting is not an option

Once you decide to pursue your dream of becoming an entrepreneur, you have to go all out. Success will not come in a day but giving up shouldn’t be an option. It may take months or even a couple of years for the entrepreneurial effort to bear fruit but when it does, it will be well worth it. As Thomas Edison would put it, Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.”

Be inspired by Real Life Successes

Take the examples of Jeff Bezos and Jack Ma. Jeff Bezos founded e-commerce colossus Amazon in 1994 out of his garage in Seattle. He runs it as CEO and owns an 11.1% stake. In 2019, Amazon notched $280.5 billion in revenues and a record $11.5 billion in net profit.

Jack Ma grew up poor in communist China, failed his university entrance exam twice, and was rejected from several jobs including one at KFC before he found success with his third internet company, Alibaba. He is now the richest man in China with a net worth of $ 25 billion. It is a real-life story of someone who pursued his dream of making it big. In spite of failures at each level, he was not deterred. He continued to dream big till he found stupendous success.

These are inspirational stories that can motivate any individual. In both cases, the entrepreneurs never gave up on their dreams although they took a long time to taste success. Almost every successful entrepreneur would have started with a dream which he/she shaped into reality using hard work.

Stay focused

If we go back to Maxwell’s quote –

“Dreams don’t work unless you do”, he is just trying to tell us that, to give shape to your dreams, to convert them into reality, they should be augmented by hard work. There are no simple ways or magic mantras which can convert dreams into reality.

Many people stop chasing their dreams because they find it difficult to focus on the arduous path they need to follow to reach their destination.

In conclusion, we can safely say that Dreams come true only when we work towards them and actualize our vision. The more we persevere in the direction of our dreams, the more likely we are to achieve them. As Thomas Edison, one of the most prolific inventors, once said,” Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.” There is simply no substitute for hard work and the harder you work the easier it will be to make your dreams come true.

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