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The 16 Reasons Why It Is So Important To Follow Your Dreams (Cross Post)

Thursday, October 4th, 2012
A Dream, a vision, a goal, a desire, these are all things most of us know we need when we are working towards success but have somewhere along the line, forgotten why it is so important we follow them through.

So I have created this list….. Well, lets call it a reminder of why it is so important to follow your dreams.

The 16 Reasons Why It Is So Important To Follow Your Dreams

1. The secret of living is giving, if you follow your dreams then you will have something worth sharing with others, hope, inspiration and a meaning to live, and that to me, is a great contribution.

2. Chasing your dreams will develop your courage. Courage is your fuel to achieve amazing success in life, follow your dreams and exercise courage. In sure enough time you will be unstoppable.

3. There is a reason why as kids we loved magic and dreams. Stop chasing your dreams and you will forget how it feels to live hopeful and young.

4. Great dreamers grow to be independent, learning that they can make a difference all by themselves.

5. Dreams can distract you from the negative events in life. You will weigh up what is more important, your dreams or the drama. Drama seems obsolete when you are passionate about following your dreams.

6. It gives you something to share and inspire your kids with, you have led by example that anything is possible when you put your mind to it.

7. Through accomplishing your dreams you will come to appreciate the experience of failure and know that failure is just part of success and that it wasn’t really all that bad as it was all worth it in the end.

8. Regret is a terrible thing, and a dream is powerful enough to bring you regret if you don’t take the chance to at least follow it.

9. Because you are never too old to dream. Age means nothing when we know what we want.

10. You become an interesting person, you show others you have meaning, direction and purpose.

11. The unknown of following your dreams may spark a little fear, this is okay though because a little fear is known to make you feel more alive.

12. It is fun proving the world wrong, so why would you follow the status quo?

13. The more you chase and accomplish your dreams the more the lines of the boundaries that the world puts in front of us fade, as we learn that any and everything is possible.

14. When you accomplish your dream, you are the first to see it happen. You can share your accomplishments with the rest of the world but you where there in the front row on a single chair to experience the magic that unfolded.

15. Your dreams have no limits, you are the creator of your dreams, big or small. When this is understood, you are able to design a way to favour you plan and accomplish your end goal.

16. A dream is strong enough to define you, once accomplished you prove to others they have no say in who you can and can’t be.

106 Excuses That Prevent You From Ever Becoming Great (Cross Post)

Thursday, October 27th, 2011

Yes, that’s right-106!

I love this highly readable guest post by Tommy Walker on Somehow, it only takes a few minutes to scroll through for a quick jolt of “just do it” juice.  At least that’s what it did for me. Enjoy.

Chasing Your Dreams Against All Odds

Thursday, September 24th, 2009

We’re all about chasing your dreams here at DreamBank. If Dawn hadn’t done so, we wouldn’t be here! So when I saw this post on, I knew I wanted to share it with our dreamers. For anyone who is still umming and arring about whether or not their dream is worth chasing – this one’s for you.

Cross-posted from, check them out, they have tons of great advice!

How to Doggedly Pursue Your Dreams in the Face of Naysayers

Photo by WTL photos

What do you do if you have a dream, but everyone around you keeps telling you to be more realistic and to give up the dream? What if they want you to pursue a more “sensible” and traditional career route?

You ignore them. You shut out the naysayers, and you stay focused on your dream.

It’s the only way. Because in our lives, we will always have naysayers, we will always have negative people, and if we listen to them, we will never pursue our dreams.

Today we’ll look at how to do that, and to make those dreams a reality.

Reader Valerie asked me recently:

I’m barely 17 (turning 18 next February), and I have set goals for my life. But in the world that we live in, where everyone’s encouraged to get a steady job, find someone to settle down with, and have a family, I rarely find support for my “crazy” dreams. I want to live in Hong Kong, work in the fashion industry, and I refuse to get married before I turn 30, if I even find someone to marry.

I know that my goals and dreams are completely in my grasp, but with all these speeches about “the real world” that people my age hear constantly, I tend to doubt myself a lot. How can I stay true to myself and stay motivated?

Look at Valerie: she has a dream, and she’s ready to take the plunge, to take a risk, to change her life just to make that dream come true. She knows what she wants, she has a plan, she’s willing to do more than most of us are willing to do to get what she wants.

And yet, she has doubts, because dreams such as hers are not considered realistic. Those doubts, my friends, are what will stop any of us from achieving our dreams.

Doubts are The Enemy
We all have doubts, and they’re unavoidable. And sometimes, it’s good to be realistic, because you need to be able to analyze whether a dream is achievable or not.

But if the only thing stopping you is fears and doubts, and not some insurmountable obstacle, then you need to banish those fears and doubts.

Why? Because a doubt, as innocuous as it may seem at first, has a way of creeping its way into your subconscious, into the depths of your heart, like some kind of black and evil creature that has infiltrated your body. The doubt lingers at the back of your head, without you being aware of it, and will eventually conquer your dreams if you let it.

And when this happens, the doubt is more powerful than you realize. When you are making the tough decisions, like whether to apply for college or to go off to Hong Kong and pursue your dreams, your dreams will lose out, because of that doubt in the back of your head. When you think about yourself, your self-image will not be of that person you want to be, but the person that others want you to be.

Doubts will keep you in a job you hate, just because you’re afraid to go do what you really want to do. Doubts will keep you with a person who abuses you, because you don’t think you deserve better.

How to Banish Doubts in Three Steps
As doubts are so insidious, how do you beat them? It’s three simple steps, but each one is a bit more difficult than they sound:

  1. Become aware. Doubt gets its power mostly because it is in our subconscious, and we’re not aware of the effects it has on us. Instead, we have to bring it to the forefront of our minds. And that means concentrating on our thoughts, and trying to search out those doubts and negative thoughts as they come up. The ones that say, “Maybe I can’t do this. Maybe it’s not realistic.” If you make a conscious effort to be aware of these doubts, you can catch them and beat them.
  2. Squash the doubt. Once you’ve become aware of the doubt, imagine that the doubt is an ugly little bug. Now step on it, and squash it with the bottom of your shoe. Not literally, of course, but in your mind. Exterminate it. Do not let it live and spread!
  3. Replace it with something positive. Now that you’ve squashed the doubt, replace it with positive thoughts. It sounds corny, but trust me, this works: think to yourself, “I can do this! Others have done it, and so can I! Nothing will stop me.” Or something along those lines, appropriate to whatever it is you’re doing.

You have to continue to be vigilant, and be aware of your doubts before they stop you cold in your tracks. This is a constant process as you pursue your dreams, not a one-time thing. Doubts, like insects, will continue to come back, even after you’ve killed the first wave or two. You can’t let them thrive and overcome you.

What to Do About Naysayers
So what about those external negative factors — the naysayers? Those friends and family and people in authority who tell you to stop dreaming, to be realistic, to take a more traditional path? Those who tell you that you can’t do something?

You have to learn to block them out. Or, if you have a contrarian streak in you, learn to let those naysayers fuel your determination — make it your desire to prove the naysayers wrong!

How do you block out naysayers? The same way you block out doubts and negative thoughts in your own head: you squash them. OK, don’t literally squash another person. But when they say something negative, or something that is likely to cause doubts in your head, take that thought (in your head) and squash it. Then replace it with something positive.

If someone is constantly bringing you down and constantly making you feel like you can’t do something, you might consider removing them from your life. This sounds drastic, and it can be, but the truth is that having a life full of negative people will drag you down to their level, and stop you from doing what you want to do. I’m not saying you should get a divorce or never see your mother again (if they’re the naysayers), but I am saying that you should pick your friends carefully.

Instead, surround yourself with positive, encouraging people. If you have friends like that, you can do anything.

How to Take the Plunge
So you’ve blocked out the naysayers, you’ve learned to become aware of your doubts and to squash them … and you’re ready to pursue your dreams.

But you’re afraid to take the plunge.

It can be very helpful to do a lot of research and to carefully plan your plunge. But once you’ve done that research and planning, you still have to take the plunge. How do you do that?

Imagine that you need to swim out to a boat on a lake, and you’re standing on the dock, looking down at the icy cold water. You are afraid to dive into that water, but you know you need to take that plunge to get to your boat. So how do you do it? Do you go in one toe at a time? Do you stand there for awhile, waiting for the right moment? Do you wait for someone to give you a push?

No. You have to just do it — just dive in! You’ve already done all the thinking you need to do. Just dive in.

Once you’re in, it’ll be freezing, but you’re in. You now have no choice but to swim to the boat. And once you’ve gotten to the boat, you’ll be glad you took that plunge.

That’s how it is with your dreams. You can’t wait for the right moment to come along, or for someone to give you a push, or for the lake to heat up. Just dive right in!

Once you’re in, you’re committed, and you have to go for it. You don’t want to turn back once you’ve taken the plunge. Now you’re more likely to achieve your dreams.

So plan it out, do your research … but when you’re ready, just dive right in. And don’t look back.

How to Stay Motivated
How do you keep your motivation levels high in the face of adversity and obstacles that are sure to come up? Motivation goes up and down, and comes in waves. It’s impossible to keep it high all the time.

Here are a few suggestions:

  1. Keep the end in mind. Have a clear picture in your head of exactly how you want your dream to turn out in the end. Know where you’ll be, what it’ll look like, how it will feel. Know exactly what needs to happen for your dream to be a success — how will you know you’ve arrived? Keep this clear picture in your head as much as possible.
  2. Stay focused. Don’t get distracted by other goals or pursuits. If you are tempted to pursue other dreams, do so only with the awareness that you are abandoning your current dream, at least for now. If you don’t want to do that, then fight off the temptation of those other pursuits. For now, just stick with this one goal.
  3. Get inspired. Who else is achieving this dream, or other dreams? Read about them, talk to them, email them. Go to websites that inspire you. Read books that inspire you. Inspiration is one of the keys to achieving any dream.
  4. Celebrate any success. Anything, however small, that you achieve is a cause for joyous celebration. Really. If you’re writing a novel, and you’ve created a great character sketch, celebrate! If you’ve written your first few paragraphs, celebrate! Your dream will be achieved in baby steps, not in leaps and bounds. Every step is a cause for celebration … with enough steps, you’ll get there.

Recommended Book

If you’re looking for a great book about pursuing your dreams in the face of obstacles, I recommend The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho. It’s a parable that’s very well told and very inspiring.

40 Inspirational Speeches in 2 Minutes: A Cheesy “Feel Good”.

Wednesday, July 29th, 2009

I was hanging out on YouTube when I came upon this. Someone had the good sense to compile 40 of the most inspiring speeches in movie history into a 2 minute burst of inspiration. So for anyone who needs a quick pick-me-up, enjoy this short & sweet hit of inspiring words. It will make you feel good, despite the “cheese” factor.

Here’s the transcript of the entire clip montage:

Shame on you. This could be the greatest night of our lives, but you’re going to let it be the worst. And I guarantee a week won’t go by in your life you won’t regret walking out, letting them get the best of you. Well, I’m not going home. We’ve come too far! And I’m going to stay right here and fight for this lost cause. A day may come when the courage of men fails… but it is not THIS day. The line must be drawn HERE. This far, no further! I’m not saying it’s going to be easy. You’re going to work harder than you ever worked before. But that’s fine, we’ll just get tougher with it! If a person grits his teeth and shows real determination, failure is not an option. That’s how winning is done! Believe me when I say we can break this army here, and win just one for the Gipper. But I say to you what every warrior has known since the beginning of time: you’ve got to get mad. I mean plum mad dog mean. If you would be free men, then you must fight to fulfill that promise! Let us cut out their living guts one inch at a time, and they will know what we can do! Let no man forget how menacing we are. We are lions! You’re like a big bear, man! This is YOUR time! Seize the day, never surrender, victory or death… that’s the Chicago Way! Who’s with me? Clap! Clap! Don’t let Tink die! Clap! Alright! Let’s fly! And gentlemen in England now abed shall know my name is the Lord when I tell our enemies that they may take our lives, but they’ll never take our Independence Day!

4 Minutes Of Inspiration = A Lifetime Of Living Your Dreams

Monday, April 27th, 2009

A while ago a friend pointed me in the direction of Where The Hell Is Matt?, the website of a guy who travelled for 14 months to 42 different countries doing a silly dance. I’ve never been more happy than in the 4 minutes of watching that video: from his silly dance, to the people who are happily joining in, to the wonderful places he’s been, all the while dancing. (Aside: Matt states on his website that he backpacked instead of staying in expensive hotels: This was a labour of love for him. Check out our previous posts on how to travel sustainably)

After watching the video over and over again, I got to thinking about bucket lists (like the movie The Bucket List, starring Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman, who escape from a cancer ward to fulfill a life “to do” list before they “kick the bucket”). I’ve had my own bucketlist for quite some time, on a piece of paper that’s been folded and unfolded more times than I care to admit, and stuffed in a little hidden place in my wallet. It’s so much more than a to-do list: it’s a list of dreams. It’s a list of the selfish things I want to do for no one else but myself. I’m sure everyone has one, even if it’s not officially written out like mine is. These lists we make aren’t just things we want to do – they’re also a symbol of hope for us.. something that inspires us to keep on trucking so that we can eventually get to one of our benchmarks and tick an item off our list.

I started to do a little research into Bucket Lists, and came upon Cath Lasons’s blog post: 47 Amazing Bucket List Ideas And Resources . She really had some amazing suggestions – everything from how to create your list to how to complete some of the most popular items on it (most people want to travel somewhere, see something, become someone, etc.)

An awesome website I found that goes hand-in-hand with Bucket Lists is Diddit, where you check off the adventures you’ve had and share them with the online community – not only to have people cheering you on, but so others can be inspired by your actions and discover new things they may want to add to their list, and vice versa. It even merges with GoogleEarth to show you exactly where people are making their dreams come true! It’s inspiring to see all these people going out and living their lives to the very last drop.

.. So what’s on your bucket list? Have you taken things off it or only added stuff? I’ll show you mine if you show me yours ;P

And a few more resources to check out:
1. Your 100 Things
2. The Reaper List
3. 43 Things
In a similar vein, check out Marc & Angel Hack Life Blog for the list of 70 Things To Do Before You Have Children.

Knowledge is Power. Or at Least Comfort.

Wednesday, January 14th, 2009

I remember telling an old co-worker about a recurring dream I had where I was losing my teeth. I wondered, was my subconscious encouraging me to floss more? He stared at me and visibly paled. “Uh, that dream means you’re going to die,” he managed.

Uh, setting-mind-at-ease FAIL.

Well, here I am years later, still alive in spite of said “premonition” (with all my own teeth too!) And I just came across this article about the meaning of of some popular dreams.


“When your teeth fall out in a dream, it could signify that you feel ill-equipped to break down the knowledge that you have available, that the way you break things down has changed. That change can be either positive or negative.”

Oh, so I’m not dying – just insecure/neurotic.  Ah, well it’s the lesser of the two evils, I’m certain.

Dawn at Net Tuesday!

Wednesday, September 24th, 2008

We’re so excited. Our very own founder, Dawn Bowles, will be speaking at the next Net Tuesday on October 14th . Net Tuesday is part of NetSquared, and is a monthly event where “Social Media and Web Innovators come together with Social Change Makers and Nonprofits to mix, swap stories and ideas, and build new relationships”.

Dawn will be part of a discussion about how to social media to empower their friends, family, or supporters to raise awareness, collaborate, and/or raise funds for a cause. William Trusty of will also be presenting on the topic.

If you’re in Vancouver, please feel free to come! RSVP on link here.

Dreaming – Without Certainty

Wednesday, September 24th, 2008

Blogger Peter Clemens of The Changes Blog has an excellent post entitled “Learning to Dream… Again”. I encourage you to read it – and be inspired by it.

I think most of us can relate to Peter’s desire to allow himself to dream again. Many have a true passion that we discard along the way, for any number of reasons. Sometimes it’s because others don’t support us or because it seems that goal no longer fits into our lives – or as Peter mentions, because we stop believing our dreams are possible.

Life sometimes has a way of clobbering our hopes, and the ups and downs can frequently be exhausting. Eventually you find yourself modifying your dreams to something more… realistic – but less inspiring.

But Peter offers some great advice:

“When I analyzed my own thoughts, I found the problem was that I would quickly discount my dreams as mere fantasies because I could not immediately imagine how these dreams would become reality. But the truth is, just because our minds don’t immediately know how we will accomplish something, it doesn’t mean it is impossible. “

While we often talk about planning when it comes to a goal, but not knowing the entire linear path of how you will get there, is also OK. You may know you want a job in the arts, for instance, and part of the journey can be in exploring the field to see what fits and what doesn’t. There is no crystal ball in life, and even with all the planning in the world, your journey to your dream may not go exactly as mapped out. It’s important to trust yourself and the process. In cases like this, allowing yourself to believe that you can achieve something, is more important than figuring out the nuts and bolts of how you will make it occur.

Strange, Strange Dreams

Wednesday, September 24th, 2008

Have you ever done a Twitter Search for “dreams”. No… ? Oh, OK, awkward…

Well moving right along… Our dreams can be pretty funny. Whether it’s having to take final exams again or being crowned King of Equidor by an Elephant (still me? OK, perhaps I’m eating too much cheese before bedtime) – it’s amazing what we come up with during slumber.

The Slow Wave comic is interested in just that, weird dreams, which you can even submit to the site. The site is:

“a collective dream diary authored by different people from around the world, and drawn as a comic strip by Jesse Reklaw.“

Take a look at the dreams and see if you’re not comforted by wild our imaginations can be. I love “CSI: Sesame Street”.

15 Notorious Failed Dreams Through History

Thursday, August 21st, 2008

fail owned pwned pictures

“I have a dream” (or, er, draem). But…

As you might imagine, we spend a lot of time here at DreamBank thinking about dreams. Some dreams don’t quite work out. Sometimes it’s a matter of bad planning, lousy luck or simply an awful idea. Here are a few examples of dreams that didn’t come to fruition.

1. Taking Over the World
Sadly, the plan of “world domination” is not restricted to the fictional characters like “The Brain” (of “Pinky and the Brain“) or “Stewie” (of “Family Guy“). Leaders like Ghenghis Khan, Alexander the Great, Stalin, Hitler, Mao and Hirohito have killed many millions in their attempts to achieve this frightening goal.

2. Creating a Super-Race
On a related note, this concept is similarly creepy and evil. And its lack of success didn’t stop Stalin, Hitler or Kim Jong-il (among many others) from trying to create a superior/master race.

3. Xenothemis’ and Hegestratos’ Wanting Money For Nothing

Xenothemis and Hegestratos received a cash advance to ship a load of corn. Because there was significant risk associated with these journeys, the agreement was that if their boat sank the pair would still be able to keep funds. So they decided to load their boat with nothing, sink it, keep the corn and the money. Their “get rich quick” scheme – seemed to have it all – but it failed – oh so miserably.

4. Franklin Expedition
Led by Sir John Franklin, the goal of the Franklin Expedition was to “chart the legendary Northwest Passage to the Pacific Ocean”. He, his crew and the ships disapeared and the mystery of what happened to them still remains.

5. The Titanic
The largest ship, ironically known as “The Unsinkable Ship“, the Titanic was a structural disaster and didn’t have nearly enough lifeboats for all the passengers. When it struck an iceberg, disaster ensued (and we’re not simply referring to the film).

6. Peg Entwistle’s Hollywood Dream
The Hollywood dream became a nightmare for this young actress. She moved to California to the Hollywood subdivision, underneath the famed Hollywood sign. Although she was revered for her performances, Entwistle had hit a run of bad luck and her plan to move back to New York was stymied by the fact that she couldn’t scrape together enough money for the train fare. She told her uncle that she was going out with some friends. Instead she climbed up the H of the Hollwood sign and dove off. It is said that is how the city became known as one of “broken dreams”

7. Ed Wood’s Desire
Although he and some of his films have now received cult status, the acclaim was posthumous. Ed Wood was “viewed as a hack writer and director“. He sank into depression and career depths late in his life.

8. The Edsel
Advertising revved up excitement for the vehicle. Many came to see it. Not many purchased. For a myriad of reasons (including its marketing ), the Edsel was a monumental failure. “When Ford finally mercy-killed the Edsel, it had lost an estimated $250 million — nearly $2 billion in today’s dollars. It was such a flop that the word has become “synonymus with failure

9. “Fatty” Arbuckle’s Career
A successful performer, Arbuckle decided to throw a party to celebrate some recent achievements. He was at the height of his career. Actress Virginia Rappe who was also at the partee died a few days later and rumors about what occurred that night circulated. Accused of murdering her, Arbuckle became “a symbol of Hollywood’s immorality” and “movie houses across the country almost immediately stopped showing Arbuckle’s movies.” The scandal killed Arbuckles career.

10. The Affordable Personal Jet
Many have tried to create an affordable personal jet. “Although a number of small jets have flown over the years, none was a commercial success, primarily due to the high fuel consumption of their primitive turbojet engines.” Perhaps someday…

11. Avro Arrow
The Arrow was “an advanced, supersonic, twin-engined, all-weather interceptor jet aircraft” and a Canadian dream. After many years the project was abruptly and controversially canceled. “It might have become the fastest plane in the world” or “the catalyst to propel Canada to the forefront of the aviation industry. Instead, it became a $400-million pile of scrap metal…”

12. The Europa Rocket
What do you call a rocket that won’t launch…? The Europa rocket was unsuccessfully launched 5 times before it was scrapped.

13. Iridium’s Phones
Iridium “promised to revolutionize the communications world by offering the first phones able to call anywhere on Earth“. It ended up filing for bankruptcy.

14. Ben Johnston’s Title
The renowned Canadian sprinter won the 100m at the 1988 Seoul Olympics and was declared the “world’s fastest man“. But his dreams and his countries hopes were dashed when he was “subsequently stripped of his medal after testing positive for performance-enhancing drugs”.

15. Shiv Charan Yadav’s Plan to Pass
Since 1969, Charan he has tried to pass an exam “normally given to schoolchildren at the age of 15″. He has failed it 38 times. While it’s still possible for him to succeed at his goal (they say the 39th time’s the charm…), the odds don’t seem to be in his favour.

As a kind of antidote to failure, in a future blog post we plan to write about dreamers who achieved their dreams in the face of enormous odds.

What do you consider “failed dream”? Any ones in history that stick in your mind?