Exploring Human Potential

7 & 7: Dream vs. Focus


We all need a place to get away, if not in our dreams then somewhere else. Imagination is not the sole province of the young but a talent for all ages. Within these musings can be found each person’s longings, a reaching out for purpose and significance. Once attained, the wish becomes the truth, no longer the product for dreams. For dreams are of the future, not the present or the past. Roots are roots, and wings are wings. Dreams should not be about escaping, used as an excuse to avoid dealing with reality, or to imagine perfection or contentment in worlds less perfect than the one we inhabit. To think of that all day is to make a life out of nothing. There is a time for dreaming and a time for focusing down with constancy of purpose, concentrating one’s resources and energy on the challenge of the day, not doing two things at once but doing one thing at once. Doing today without trying to do yesterday and tomorrow as companions. But while the jobs are getting done, leave time each day to dream a little, to keep alive the big ideas, so fragile and so easy to dismiss.


Those who lose dreaming are lost.
Australian Aboriginal proverb

Imagination grows by exercise, and contrary to common belief, is more powerful in the mature than in the young.
W. Somerset Maugham

The significance in a man is not what he attains but rather what he longs to attain.
Kahlil Gibran

There are only two lasting bequests we can hope to give our children. One of these is roots, the other, wings.
Hodding Carter

A child on a farm sees a plane fly overhead and dreams of a faraway place. A traveler on the plane sees the farmhouse and dreams of home.
Carl Burns

Life consists in what a man is thinking of all day.
Ralph Waldo Emerson

The secret of success is constancy to purpose.
Benjamin Franklin

The wise man puts all his eggs in one basket and watches the basket.
Andrew Carnegie

You can’t think and hit at the same time.
Yogi Berra

If you have one eye on yesterday, and one eye on tomorrow, you’re going to be cockeyed today.

Big ideas are so hard to recognize, so fragile, so easy to kill. Don’t forget that, all of you who don’t have them.
John Elliott, Jr.

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