NourishEd: Dreams and Desires


Noun. a series of thoughts, images, and sensations occurring in a person’s mind during sleep; a cherished aspiration, ambition, or ideal.

Verb. experience dreams during sleep; indulge in daydreams or fantasies about something greatly desired.

“A dream is a succession of images, ideas, emotions, and sensations that usually occur involuntarily in the mind during certain stages of sleep. The content and purpose of dreams are not fully understood, although they have been a topic of scientific, philosophical and religious interest throughout recorded history”.


Noun. a strong feeling of wanting to have something or wishing for something to happen.

Verb. strongly wish for or want (something).

“Desire is the emotion of longing or hoping for a person, object, or outcome. The same sense is expressed by words such as “craving”. When a person desires something or someone, their sense of longing is excited by the enjoyment or the thought of the item or person, and they want to take actions to obtain their goal”.

I am a dreamer. I dream at night and I dream in the day. I dream in technicolour. My dreams are cinematic and lifelike. My dreams are vast and limitless.

But what do my dreams reveal about my desires? Are my dreams my sub-conscious and passive? Or are my desires my conscious and more active?

Dreams and desires need courage. Courage brings them to life.

“All our dreams can come true if we have the courage to pursue them”.

Walt Disney

I am a dreamer, but I am also a doer. I get frustrated by people who share their dreams and their desires, but they do not do anything about making them a reality. We all know those people in our lives who can talk a good talk, they are good with their words, they are compelling in their vision but they do not walk the walk to make it happen. Their mission is incomplete, it is hanging in mid-air. 

“A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step”.

Lao Tzu

Our dreams do not suddenly come true. Our desires do not suddenly manifest themselves. Our dreams and our desires need time, energy, attention and resource. They need to be brought to life. They need enacting.     

A good friend and soul sister of mine has become an accountability partner and we have coined a mantra that we both mirror back to each other. It is simply: “Getting shit done”. Pardon my French, but I think it will resonate.

To fulfil our dreams and our desires, we need action. Our dreams and our desires are alive, they are active, and they need our commitment. As we sow each seed, we then need to create and maintain the conditions for growth. Our seeds need nurturing, our garden needs cultivating, then we can harvest, not before. 

“Our truest life is when we are in dreams awake”.

Henry Thoreau

So, it is all well and good thinking about what we want to do, what we want to achieve, what we want to change, but we need to be deliberate, intentional and purposeful to realise our dreams and desires. We need to change the lens through which we view our dreams and desires; we need to reframe our commitment to making things happen. 

“Intense, burning desire is the motivational force that enables you to overcome any obstacle and achieve almost any goal”.

Brian Tracy

We need to project manage our dreams and desires like we do every other aspect of our lives. As women we organise, we manage and we serve – quite often everything except for ourselves! We need to apply those principles to this aspect of our life too.

That “series of thoughts, images, and sensations” need to be brought together. We need an action plan, we need to set goals, milestones and success criteria. We need to be active, reflective and evaluative as we create a sequence of intentional activity.   

Here are some practical tips to get started:

  1. Visioning: creating a vision board a good way to start is with. Building a collage of everything we dream about – at night and in the day. Putting our intentions out to the universe.
  2. Affirming: bringing those dreams to life through a daily affirmation, a commitment to ourselves. Articulating in writing what you want and verbalise them regularly.
  3. Journalling: exploring our dreams and our desires in writing helps us to make sense of what we are thinking about. Looking for patterns and meaning. Listening to the messages. 
  4. Articulating: talking opens and honestly with close friends and loved ones about what we dream and desire, enables others to help us fulfil our potential and realise the abstract.
  5. Reviewing: reflecting on our progress, celebrating out progress and reviewing what is and what is not working will keep us focused on our goals.

We should not let anyone place limits on our dreams and desires, including ourselves. Our dreams and desires are valid.  Our dreams and our desires need voice and agency.

“No matter where you are from. Your dreams are valid”.

Lupita Nyong’o

As a future-focused and solutions-focused person another reframe is the tense through which we think about and talk about our dreams and desires which can be a subtle shift in mindset. The language we use is important, so it needs to be intentional too.

I dream about… I desire… is a waiting game.

I wish… I want… is a power game.

Let’s stop musing and let’s start doing. For each statement extend it by adding “so I will…”

I dream about writing… so I will set up a blog.

I wish I could meet a partner… so I will join an online dating site.

I want to lose weight… so I will go on a health kick.

Even then the action is finite and needs expanding with a commitment:

I dream about writing… so I will set up a blog… and I will commit to writing weekly.

I wish I could meet a partner… so I will join an online dating site… and I will commit to regularly meeting new people and going on dates.

I want to lose weight… so I will go on a health kick… and I will commit to doing the Couch to 5k this month.

Whatever it is you are wishing for or wanting, by adding an “I will” statement and by making a commitment for what you are going to do about it is that step towards making it happen. 

“Most people fail, not because of lack of desire, but, because of lack of commitment”.

Vince Lombardi

Let’ stop waiting. Whether we are waiting for permission, waiting for an answer, waiting for an offer.

Let’s stop “wanting to have something or wishing for something to happen” and let’s take control and make it happen! Let’s not only own, but also let’s realise our dreams and desires.

Let’s get shit done.

Published by Ethical Leader

Leadership Development Consultant, Facilitator, Coach, Speaker and Writer. Experience of teaching schools, initial teacher education, mentoring & coaching, diversity and equality. Passionate about integrity, ethics and values.

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