Awakening to Our Lost Dreams

How many dreams do we let go of based on someone saying we
“shouldn’t” do that?

My husband was late again. So… I went out to the local bar with my computer and scratchpad to do some work. As I was getting settled, the server, a beautiful lively soul, asks if I like drawing. We got into a conversation and discovered that she wanted to draw and create art when she was a child, but was told that there is no future in that. It was interesting, as just days ago my husband and I had been at the same bar and I had tried karaoke as a way to face my fear of singing. I had been told that I was not good enough when I was in grade 3. It also brought up the memories of a teenage genius artist I had been coaching that had been told by her parents that she must not follow the artistic path. So many dashed dreams. Often of creativity. And for what?

We live in a world of certain paradigms and ideals of what is good and right. Yet, the majority of us don’t fit. Initially we may believe there is something wrong with us, but upon further investigation and processing, we realize that the constraints of the current world view are not allowing the real and alive spirit of us all to truly share our innate gifts. This world is one that is evolving and needs the creative and moving spirit. We are not robots that will stay in the same job for the rest of our lives. Success is not determined by the amount of money we make or have. Jobs that exist at the time students enter university may not exist when they exit it. The only constant in our current world is the creative change that happens daily. We need the creative spirit, ability and capacity to literally survive.

Let’s look at our current world. You may work religiously and put away money only to find that through stock markets, life situations and world conditions that there is no financial security. You may enter a career that seems growing and worthwhile to find you have no energy for it and the market dies. You may do a strategic plan for five years to find that nothing follows the plan. We no longer have security in our finances, homes, jobs, relationships and so much more. We now must move with the times. A phrase and title that really resonates for me came from a book by C. Otto Sharmer, “Theory U” and it was “leading from the future as it emerges”. For general life, I reframe that to “living from the emerging future”.

What does that mean? And how does that relate to the title of this article, “awakening to our lost dreams”? They actually go together. At our core and essence “dreams”, we are often following our innate natures and tendencies. For example, when I was a child, I loved to sing, dance, draw, do aerobics and read. If I noticed the theme of all of this, it was in the pursuit of creative expression and expressing my love of life. This creative and natural spirit is what I actually need to live in an emerging future and “dance” with the world as it presents itself to me. Our natural dreams that we can feel are often the tools that allow us to “live” in the world. From counselling and coaching many individuals, I often find that what is core to that person is a valuable gift to the world. An example of how this can work is illustrated with a collaborative book project that I initiated a year ago, “The Speakers Collective”.

Just over a year ago I was the incoming VP of Education at the Vancouver Entrepreneurs Toastmasters Club. I stood at the front of this amazing group of people and asked, “How many of you have ever wanted to write a book?” (the example of a dream). Over twenty hands went up in the room of about forty-five people. I then offered the opportunity for a group of us to get together and co-write a book - one or two chapters each. There are now eight of us who are The Speakers Collective at and we have our draft chapters written. It was interesting that at the beginning of the group, I opened it up to each individual in the group to share what they would like to write about from their hearts and core. I put no expectation that it should be about speaking or life or anything. What came out were very deep core messages about life and growth. It evolved into a personal growth book that had perfect balance in three sections containing such topics as authenticity, transition and community sharing. It mapped out perfectly and better than any of us could have shared or predicted individually. That is the beauty of allowing our innate and natural gifts to be shared and see how they play out in the ecosystem of our human life. We expect the book to come out in 2016 or 2017 and will allow its natural life cycle to determine the specifics of when and how.

When we all awaken to our “lost dreams” we reconnect to ourselves and also what we are able to offer the world. Our world is suffering right now and we all hold the key. But only if we listen and act upon what we deeply hear. This relates to another theme I write/teach on: EAT embrace, awareness, transformation. As we embrace our gifts and dreams, it brings awareness and shows the gifts we may not have been conscious to and the transformation follows seamlessly - for ourselves as well as for the world. You are invited to reflect on what dreams you have had and “lost”. What gifts would those have been to you and the world?

For my part and the amazing server who helped me today, we are going to support each other by letting me sing my heart out on Thursday evenings in karaoke and I am going to witness her artistic renditions. It is never too late to go back to our dreams and bring them to reality. I wish you all the best as you embrace your dreams and bring them to the world. Thank you.

If you would like to explore more of Cheryl-Dean's reflections and creative spirit, you are invited to and To stay posted with the project, The Speakers Collective, you are invited to

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