— blending the mix

Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Sailor – which one are you?

So what did you want to be when you grew up? Train Driver? Bus Driver, Doctor?

Did you want to help, make, break or invent something?

We all had dreams as kids and in our simple little world nothing was impossible. Whatever they were, I think we can boil these down to just four categories:

  • Help
  • Make
  • Break
  • Invent

So what did you want to be and do? More importantly, what are you doing now? How did what you do now change from what you wanted to be? Who influenced those changes? You, your parents, business, society (close friends as well as the wider public) or something else?

Hugh posted something typically profound a few weeks ago about what I would call "the tipping point" (although not the same tipping point as the great book!) about life and where you are in your "great plan":

How do you tell if you’ve made it – you’re doing what you always wanted to and you have everything you ever dreamed would make you happy?

On the other hand, when do you accept that the dream has to stop, you have to accept that the things you wanted to happen just WON’T happen, the things you wanted to do just CAN’T be done anymore and you have to accept that things are not going to change?

How do you deal with the fact that you already hold the cards life has dealt you and you just have to get on with it?

Should you ever give up dreaming? When should you stop? Should you stop?

When should life smack you in the face and say "wake up dreamer, live your life, stop dreaming about what you haven’t got and get on with what you have got?".

I have my own thoughts about my situation and people I know on foreign but familiar shores are thinking very carefully about theirs but what are your thoughts?

I would love to hear what anybody else thinks…

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  1. Paul says: January 16, 20085:46 pm

    I really think the key to happiness is low expectations. I don’t mean that in a negative way at all. So I don’t think there needs to be a point where you turn around and wonder if you’ve made it or not. I think it’s just a case of gradually (or suddenly) lowering expectations until what you have roughly coincides with what you want. So at 16 you might want to be a professional footballer, but by 30 you realise that having a decent job and a few close friends makes you happy. Or maybe you never reach that stage.

  2. Helen-LG says: January 18, 200812:11 pm

    I think most of us never stop dreaming completely (nor should we!) but I think those dreams or aspirations do change over time; due to age and changes in our surroundings and/or circumstances if nothing else. For instance, how many of us now do jobs that didn’t exist when we were children?!

  3. paul.fabretti says: January 21, 200810:19 am

    I know what you mean. It would be easy to not set goals so that you can’t miss them (to continue the footballing analogy!) but I guess as we mature, we understand better what is and isn’t within our control and what is important to us.

    The older we get, the more we value different things.

    All I mentioned to Paul applies to what you said too. Prioroities change over time I guess. Interesting though about jobs that didn’t exist when we were kids.

    I guess if nothing else, dreaming gives us that bit of escapism we ALL need and at the same time, gives us a bit of freedom to open our eyes to opportunities we might not see.

  4. James Whatley says: August 7, 20089:03 am

    Nice post Paul.

    I’m an eternal optimist and I’m a firm believer in that stress and worry* shouldn’t really, really exist…

    *There’s no point worrying about something that hasn’t happened because, well – it hasn’t happened yet and there’s no point worrying about something that has already happened – because there’s nothing you can do about it.

    I try to have no regrets but I also try and be the happiest and nicest guy I can be every day I wake up.

    From small things like trying to compliment at least three people every day to much, much larger things like organising a Fancy Dress Picnic – just for the fun of it!

    Right now I have the best job I have ever had in my entire life – I’ve been through ups and I’ve certainly been through enough downs.. but I leave the downs down there and I make a good effort in enjoying the ups up here…

    The only dream I’ve given up on is dancing, I guess. I know I never be a dancer – but then again I think that if I wanted to do that much, then I would’ve made the necessary sacrifices…

    So I don’t get too hung up on it.

    …as I said – I’m optimistic – :)

  5. paul.fabretti says: August 7, 20084:14 pm

    James – please bottle up some of what you have and send it to me please!

    You are infectious, but in totally the right way!

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