You deserve a reward, right? Seriously. You’ve earned it.
I’m not saying this because I’m in Gen Y and think everyone deserves a trophy (although you’re welcome to send me one via Facebook). You’ve earned a reward because you’re investing your own time to read, learn, be challenged and take risks to move forward. Most people aren’t like you.
Too many people would rather use their free time to watch talk shows about paternity tests, or scripted “reality” shows that are simply train-wreck TV. But you’re different. You’re reading this by choice. You’re choosing to invest in yourself, and that deserves a reward. I’m giving it to you.
The best reward I can give you is not one I can print, sign and present for hanging on your wall. That’s good news for both of us (my penmanship is dreadful). The reward you’ve earned is way better, but it’s something only you can give yourself. You have earned the right to act on one of your dreams in the next two weeks.
The catch? Experiencing this dream has to cost you less than $20. Why that amount? Because we’re not going to let money, or any other excuse, keep you from your well-earned Dream Appointment.
Your dream might be spending two extra hours focused solely on your family. Maybe you want to go on a long nature walk or call an old high school friend you haven’t spoken with in years.
All of us have at least one dream like that. It’s a dream that makes us smile, and it’s easily within reach, but we don’t allow ourselves to live it. Instead, we keep our dream at bay and march on. But today is your reward day. You’ve earned it.
Here is what I want you to do:
1. List three dreams you could achieve for less than $20 in the next 14 days. Be specific.
2. Circle the one dream that you think will give you the most joy and is also easy to achieve.
3. Now the hard part: Make an appointment to achieve your dream. Add the appointment to your calendar and tell someone who will hold you accountable.
4. The best part: Live your dream! When I live one of my dreams, I take a photo or video. This makes the experience last longer and gives me a touchstone that my dreams are designed to be lived, not delayed.
You and I both have dreams within reach. Some we share. Some we don’t. What we dream says a lot about ourselves. What we do in pursuit of our dreams says way more. It’s time for you to say to the world: I’ve earned it! I’ve earned an appointment to live a dream that brings me joy and meaning.
Sharing this column with you has inspired me to live one of my dreams. Instead of working this Saturday, I’m going to take my daughter to the park. We’ll slide, swing and run around. Then I’ll use my $20 to buy two big milkshakes for us and flowers for her mommy.