If Only… My Daily Dream World
I say this all the time. A lot of my twenties have been spent living in a dream world where my mind plays out scenarios I wish I was experiencing in real life.
I’ll sit there at the cusp of a potentially awesome situation thinking about how it would go if I acted one particular way. The problem is — I rarely act on the situation I imagine.
Here are some examples:
I’ll be in a lecture and have a question. I’ll imagine myself asking it in from of 200 people and feeling good about it. But when the time comes to speak up, I sit silent.
Or I will see a beautiful girl. I imagine saying hello to her and having an excellent conversation but instead I sit silent daydreaming about what could have been.
Maybe I’ll go to a networking event and meet only 1 or 2 people despite having hundreds of people to talk to.
Why do I never act on it? Because it is super hard. The risk of embarrassment is high. The risk of failure is too great. I dwell on the negative outcomes and not the positive ones.
Over the last several years I have become to realize that the possibility of greatness and embarrassment exist in the same place.
If you are not willing to be embarrassed you are not willing to be great and the result will be mediocrity in every aspect of your life.
It is one thing to write this – it is another thing to experience it.
So here’s the scenario. We were in Berlin at an outdoor market. Thousands of people came to this event. It was the place to be in Berlin on a Sunday afternoon. After an hour or so of walking around the market I made my way to the outside of the park. I noticed a small gathering building and could hear the sound of drums. Intrigued I walked towards the noise to see what was going on.
Inside the small circle of people were two drummers each surrounded by various percussion instruments. The drummers were surrounded by people dancing and surrounding the dancers were people.. just watching.
I sat on the outskirts watching for about 10 minutes before I proceeded to hike up the hill adjacent to the park to get a better angle on the spectacle unfolding before me. Soon the number of people dancing swelled and before me was a flash mob of people dancing.
I was jealous of the dancers. To me, it looked like they were having a blast. Then it started… my daydreaming began. I imagined myself dancing and having a great time, but I didn’t act on it. I was nervous. Dancing in broad daylight in front of a bunch of strangers is embarrassing.
Success is never given to a bystander who sat on the sideline swearing they could do better.
Eventually it was time to leave and as we walked past the drum circle on our way to the exit, I began beating myself up for not dancing; regretting my indecision.
If only I thought.
I am tired of regrets.
So I did it. I jumped into the fray and danced. The natural high I experienced lasted well into the evening. My serotonin levels skyrocketed. During the whole process, I felt awkward, awesome, and alive.
Was it worth it? – Damn right.
*Thanks Chris for filming this!