Written by Desiree Brandon
Everybody has dreams. When I was a kid, I dreamed of being a neurologist who would moonlight as an opera singer on the weekends. And as every kid experiences, my dreams changed over the years, and I bet your dreams have changed too. As we ease into adulthood, we simply stop “dreaming” up big dreams. We start striving for things that are easy to attain. Dreaming big can become a lost art as an adult.
My big adult dream was to get married, but shortly after my wife and I got married this past September, I realized that I, too, had stopped dreaming big.
Sure, after 13 years together, we had obtained some of our early dreams as a couple: the house, the car, the 2 dogs and 2 cats, the micro farm with six chickens (all named after female rappers, naturally).
All of it had shaped up beautifully. But it wasn’t until my wife purchased a Square Swipe device (a digital credit card reader) did I realize that she had been paying close attention to my big dreams, even though I wasn’t. I have spent the better part of a year selling eggs from our chickens, making lotion bars, making candles and infusing oils. And now, I have a way to fully realize my micro business dream. It literally took her paying attention to what I wasn’t saying, in order for me to see what I was dreaming. This small dream has led to us start dreaming big together.
Dreaming big as a couple can do wonders for both people. To dream big as a couple, there are seven clear steps and things to consider:
- Make each other’s dreams your “couple” dreams. Simply put, make sure you both have dreams and goals on the list together. I am a very independent woman, but the dreams I choose to put on our “couple” list are handpicked because they are too hard for me to accomplish on my own. If you are always chasing a dream of your partner, you will never feel fully satisfied.
- Check in at least weekly. Choose which goals you are working on that month. Even if you aren’t working on the same goal, checking in will help you both to hold each other accountable. That can also help to make necessary adjustments. I find that date night is a great time to informally check in.
- Become “dream” partners! Take time to bounce ideas off of each other. My wife wasn’t afraid to take action and send off for a Square swiper because of the ideas I bounced off of her regularly.
- Realize that her support allows you the space for failure (and vice versa). The hardest part of taking a dream and putting it through the process to become a reality is the absolute fear of failure. If she loves you, your failure does not change how she feels. That support is BEYOND crucial.
- Write down your “dreams” as a plan! Type them in your Mac, write them down old school in a shared notebook, email them to each other, whatever floats your boat! But remember, an unwritten plan does not allow you both to work on the steps or help with accountability.
- Talk about your dream with others! I’m not saying to become that couple that obsessively spills everything, but you never know who could help your dream become reality. I have a friend who left the corporate world to open the only DJ school in town, and he couldn’t have done it without talking to others about his dream. Because he was relentless in sharing with others, he found a partner in the most famous DJ in town.
- Have at least three dreams that are on the list for fun! Ours, right now, consists of New Year’s Day 2017 in Argentina; a honeymoon in Mazatlan and Guadalajara, Mexico; and turning our fresh-produce charity into an official 501c3. These dreams have specific impact on our day to day and everything to do with our sanity.
Most people aren’t ready for their dreams to come true. But if your dreams don’t scare you, they aren’t big enough! What goals do you both have as a couple? How can you work on dreaming big together?