Have you ever wondered why some adults are so timid about pursuing their dreams? I think the following story explains it well.
The speaker looked into the faces of the elementary school students and asked with great enthusiasm “What do you want to be when you grow up”. Before he finished the sentence many hands shot up. The students were excited to share their belief that they will be Presidents, Astronauts, Horse trainers, Superheroes…and the list went on and on. The students spoke loudly and even met the laughter from others with good-natured laughter themselves. Their confidence could not be quenched.
The speaker five years later met these same students in Middle school and enthusiastically asked them the same question “What do you want to be when you grow up?”. With a degree of self consciousness a few students put up their hands and shared “I going to be a teacher, I going to get a job at McDonalds, or I’m going to work with my Dad, Mechanic… then silence. The speaker looked around and asked would anyone else care to share their dream about what they will do in the future? He was met with students looking down at their hands and whispering to each other.
That same speaker met with the same students five years later in High School and with a smile of encouragement asked them “What do you want to be when you grow up?”. He was met with silence, no hands raised. He decided to pick students out of the audience and ask them to stand and share their hopes for their future employment. The answers ranged from a distracted “I don’t know” to an “I think I’m going to go to college and then decide after that.” One boy said he planned to study medicine and become a Doctor, however with head hung down and as he lowered his voice he didn’t appear to be confident that statement.
The same students were seen at five year spans, what happened, what changed? Where were those confident, brave, enthusiastic six year olds he had first encountered? Somewhere along the way seeds of doubt had been planted, weeds of self consciousness had grown, and shrubs of inadequacy stayed.
This story is unfortunately played out too often and witnessed in the lack of confidence displayed by many adults as they approach their dreams. It may be a dream for a future spouse, financial stability in a career they are passionate about, or a personal health and wellness goal. Regardless of the goal, many adults need help so that they can recover that bright, brave and brilliant child who believed in the best possibilities for their life and future. With coaching my clients are able to recover their ability to dream big, but go further and add plans and actions so that those dreams can become reality. Along the way there may be challenges, but there are also supports if you know how to look for them. The value of those supports and encouragement cannot be underestimated.
If you have some unrealized dreams that you want to explore and are ready to take a chance and bravely pursue, call me for a free consultation to see if this is the path and the time to begin your own dream recovery.
Allison Bonilla LCSW
Your Focused Life Coach