The Failure of Fantasy: Learning How to Get Stuff Done
One day I'm going to …
When I grow I'm going to…
When I finish school I'm going to…
How have you completed these sentences?
What are the dreams you nurtured and fed as a child? As an adolescent? Last year?
We all have dreams for our future. Dreams for what we'll learn, what we'll buy, where we'll work, how we'll achieve influence and on and on it goes. There's only one difference between people who only ever dream about their goals and people who achieve them: work.
Proverbs 28:19 says, “Those who work their land will have abundant food, but those who chase fantasies will have their fill of poverty.”
In an ancient agricultural society, if you spent your time chasing fantasies, you missed critical opportunities to feed yourself and your family. If you were dreaming when you should have been planting, watering or harvesting, you were going to end up hungry and poor. On the flip side, if you did the right work at the right time, you usually would have more than enough to eat.
The irony here is that if you worked your land, and you made a profit, you might have time and money to pursue you other endeavors. But if you chased your fantasy and didn't work, you failed on two levels. You missed an opportunity to provide for your basic needs, and, as a result, you don't have the capital, time or energy to invest in your dream.
Sometimes achieving you dreams means you do the mundane stuff first. Digging out of debt, learning your scales, paying your dues at the office, planting in the spring so you can harvest in the fall. But we tend to live in a wish first, work later culture. But wishes aren't the same as work.
Here's a question I've always loved from columnist Mitch Albom when it comes to our dreams: Have you done the work to be where you say you want to be?