When Dreams Collide – Monday Motivation #38
This post is a unique one in that it is an open discussion (I hope) between you and I. I hope you will take time to comment and give me your thoughts and suggestions.
Families are made up of individuals
You love the job you presently have, but your spouse receives a dream job offer in a foreign place.
There are so many things to consider… do you have children? What will their education be like? How about our pets? What about family: being near yours or theirs and how drastic will the separation be? And friends… and established life … and so on and so on.
But what if you remove everything exterior to the two of you? What if you were both only-child orphans? Does that change the perspective? I think you now focus on things like: What of your job and career goals? Are they less important than your spouse’s? Less urgent? Perhaps you’ll decide to continue down your career path / continue pursuing your goals while your spouse departs for a time to pursue theirs. That feels like a choice between two points of intense joy for you: 1) being in the company and affection of your spouse or 2) achieving your own professional pinnacle.
So how do we navigate these situations?
Recently I was faced with a scenario like this. I was considering travel abroad. I dreamt of it and planned for it. And then my son was selected for a prestigious theater ensemble that he’s been dreaming of for quite some time.
For him to pursue that program, much of our time and focus will be spent on balancing school work and theater responsibilities. The mother in me recognizes the importance of his dream and absolutely can’t wait to proudly support that dream. The woman inside me is deeply disappointed for having to delay the travel I’ve personally dreamed of for years.
It’s a dilemma that all families come to even in routine daily scenarios: one person wants to go out for dinner, another wants to stay in and eat a home-cooked meal; one person wants to go to the movies, another wants a sporting event and yet another wants to stay home and read a book.
Navigating these situations is such a part of the human existence. Often they can be simply solved: “John, you go to the movies while I read my book and then we will have dinner together later and talk over each of our adventures.”
Other times, the compromise is less readily accessible.
Communication seems the only way through. Communication that comes from love and rests in the open space people two people such that they each can see both sides of the thing and then individually come to an understanding that supports and loves the individuals while also staying mindful of the beautiful joint venture that is their loving relationship.
Simply put, that’s not always easy and the outcome isn’t always abundantly joyful.
It’s all in your head
So then what do we do when the dreams that collide are both within the same person? What happens when YOU have two dreams that are banging against one another, vying for your time, attention and resources? How do you address that scenario?
One common example is when a woman who wants desperately to be a mother and yet she is mid-climb in her career and wants to find success there as well.
I’m presently at that kind of crossroads and have been contemplating it for weeks now.
Last November, three of us contrived a story – a plot that I immediately fell in love with and that we spent weeks fleshing out. Truth is that venture has taken us through months of brainstorming and has now involved the help of friends and family such that the story grows and gains more depth and meaning. I love this young adult fantasy that I’m working on with so many co-conspirators and I cannot wait to share it with the world.
And yet I’ve also been blogging avidly, increasing the frequency and love with which I post. My website is beautiful to me – a public place to present my self love and inspire others to find theirs. It is warm and full and grounding. I look forward to posting and to seeing the response of others.
But in the past few weeks, I’ve come to notice that my blog and my manuscript cannot both have the same hours in my day. They cannot both receive my undivided love and attention.
And to make matters worse, I have a consultation job looming in the very near future that will take even more of my time.
Lately, the blog has been “winning” my time and energy. And the Project Totem has received little, if any attention at all. And yet that dream looms large – so large that just the thought of it makes me feel good – happy at the thought of writing it, happy at the idea of making maps and drawing images of the characters, of interacting with the public about it, of fashioning setting and dialogue.
I feel guilty for neglecting it.
I feel the scrape of anticipation as it rubs against cinder-block-stagnation over and over again.
I’m raw in those spots.
I look over at my blog … and I feel a sense of obligation – obligation somehow cuts the joy of it, acid washing the happiness with an unnamed negative feeling.
As I struggle to make a decision, I thought that surely others feel similar strife in their lives – surely others struggle to find balance between all of their loves – and maybe this week’s post should be about picking one’s way through the difficult decisions life puts in front of us.
A Temporary Solution
I’ve had that open conversation that happens between two people whose dreams collide – but I’ve had it with myself, opening up all my loving feelings about myself, my dreams and the desire to succeed at both while accepting the reality that that cannot happen under the present construct.
Today, I accept that Project Totem deserves more time and attention, I feel drawn to it and know that my soul is reaching for it; I’ve ignored that beseeching for too long.
Today, I forgive myself for the times when the blog may not be done on its present schedule.
Today, I know that things will be OK even if I cannot fulfill my own self-imposed blogging schedule every week.
Today, I love and accept myself and all my dreams and I look forward to seeing what this new journey reveals to me.
Where you come in
I would love your thoughts and input on how you deal with conflicting dreams in your lives. What do you do to address the points of tension and find harmony in all the beautiful things you love to do. Please comment below – I could definitely use your thoughts and suggestions.
Source for original image: here