That’s what your’ve always been told, right?
I am a dreamer. All my life I have had someone (usually someone who loves me) telling me I need to get my head out of the clouds. To stop dreaming. To be more like so-and-so. To finish what I start. “Why?” I would ask. Usually the answer had something to do with dreamers never get anywhere. Dreamers don’t have good careers. Dreamers don’t save for retirement.
So, I did it.
My dreamer got pushed down. My dreamer was put in a box and told to behave.
You can be a dreamer, living your life in your head, thinking outside the box, jumping from project to project with an enthusiasm and speed that makes your friends dizzy.
Or, you can be a doer, nose to the grindstone, carving out your little piece of the world. Punch the clock, put in your time, go home, relax on the weekend so you can get up Monday morning and do it all again.
I put my nose to the grindstone and let others make my decisions for me. I did the work. I forged ahead. I was miserable.
Then I married a man who saw the dreamer in me. This logical, practical, curious, problem solver, doer of a man looked at me in my suits and heels and corporate job and saw the dreamer. Then, he started fiddling. Poking. Prodding. Pulling back the taped seal until it frayed and started disintegrating. I did say he was a problem solver, didn’t I?
And suddenly, I started to dream again. Small dreams, at first, but they didn’t stay small.
And my doer smiled and told me to dream some more.
When I doubted myself, he didn’t coddle and encourage. Do you know what he did? He got mad. He got mad each and every time I tried to stuff the dreamer in me back in the box.
When my dreams got really big and I couldn’t figure out where to start to make them happen, he rolled up his sleeves and got to work. Every step, the dreamer and the doer worked together. Working harder than we ever had. Being true to ourselves and keeping true to each other.
Dreamer or doer?
“Pick one,” they say. I say you already are one.
You don’t have to chose. You don’t have to deny yourself.
Success comes from both. The ones who have figured it out are the ones who realize the two are required to make the kind of life others envy. Those who can dream big, partner with a doer who can knock out the work. The doers who want more, partner with a dreamer they trust. The symbiosis of that relationship works. Rare is the individual who has both. Success does not exist in a bubble, inside one person. Success is a living, breathing organism of dreams, desires, blood, sweat and tears. It is a marriage between the dream and the action. A marriage based on trust.
Do you have someone you trust? A spouse? A friend? A parent? Someone who can be your mentor? Someone who can be a partner?
It doesn’t have to be someone you are married to. Just open your eyes and ears to the possibility. Let yourself desire the amazing and they will show up.
You are meant for more. Go after it. Bring the person or team into your life that will take you were you want to go.
Ask for it.
I would bet they are looking for you, for what you have to bring to the table.Their partner in awesomeness.
I’ll bet they don’t even know it. I didn’t.
We got knocked down, hard enough to lose our breath. My doer forged ahead, grinding away, letting my lick my wounds. And I watched the grinding take it’s toll until I could no longer watch. I began to want the big dream again. It bubbled away inside me while I watched my partner hold it together. He Did so I could Dream again. When the pressure built up to the point where I said, “Enough!” He smiled and and kept working and said, “Keep going. I’m right there with you.”
So I do.