Leaning to Action Positive Outliers Resilient Hope

The Dream Manager

What are your dreams? 

Have you written them down? If not, why not? 

Perhaps, because we are taught not to value dreaming. We are told that dreaming is wasting time. Dreams are fantasy and will never happen. Dreams only set us up for disappointment.

We are all wired to dream. All children dream when they are young – unless or until the world knocks it out of them. Our dreams need to be taken seriously. Once we do, these dreams can become what truly motivates us.

More than that, realising our dreams begin to colour our lives in ways that are invigorating and energising.

Recently, I enjoyed reading Matthew Kelly’s The Dream Manager. Most of the book is written as a business fable about a caretaking business that is haemorrhaging money through sick leave and high staff turnover among its workforce. The workers in this firm are typically from a fairly poor background. The story illustrates well how connecting the employees to their dreams, helping them work towards them and holding them accountable through an internal company dream coaching function helps galvanise them into hope.

There it is again, that word hope. Dreams are mentally healthy and interrupt our natural negativity bias in favour of moving towards a more positive future. Working towards one’s dreams shifts us from a victim mindset towards realising that we have a choice and are more powerful than we realise.

Here is one of my favourite quotes from Bono, lead singer of U2, talking a few years ago in an interview about his One Campaign against poverty in Africa:

The future is more malleable than we think, and we must wrestle it from the fools.


Most of us are foolish with our future, saying things like, I have too… or I must…, or this won’t work, it never does. This is the language of the crowd-followers, of foolish victims. Sometimes we are disappointed, so we would rather not dream than be disappointed.

Instead, we wake up and realise that we have choices.

Most of us know the story of the prodigal son as told by Jesus. There’s a moment in the story when the fool wises up:

But when he came to himself, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have more than enough bread, but I perish here with hunger! I will arise, and go to my father, and I will say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son. Treat me as one of your hired servants.”’ And he arose and came to his father.

Luke’s Gospel, Chapter 15

He came to himself. 

When did you last come to yourself? When did you last wise up and stopped being a victim and started dreaming again, and taking steps towards achieving that dream?

As we treat our dreams seriously and take steps towards making them happen, we are changed.

What are your dreams? Allow me to be your dream manager for a moment. Leave a comment below.

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