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Monday Mom challenge: Act on a daydream

Jen Klein is a New England-based technical writer and mother of three. When she isn't asking her kids to stop bickering, "caramelizing" the dinner or actively ignoring the dust bunnies under the couch, she enjoys knitting, gardening, pho...

Change "someday" to "now"

When was the last time you said, "Someday I'd like to ." We all have these daydreams. Some are passing fancies, but some stick around. Some are big and some are little, some are immediately possible and some are logistical challenges. Most often we say to ourselves, "Nah, that'll never happen." We dismiss our daydreams with alarming frequency - often in the name of parenthood.

Woman daydreaming

Whatever these daydreams are, they should not be dismissed. These daydreams tell us something about how we feel about our current life situation and about grander life vision, and give a glimpse into the risk-taker within us. Whether "realistic" or not, some daydreaming is a part of life - and a part that can be life-expanding if we let it. We talk to our kids frequently about working hard to reach for their dreams, but how often do we lead by example in this area?

Write them down

First things first, write down your daydreams. Call it a life list or a bucket list or whatever you want, just write them down. You don't need to organize them or edit them, just get them on paper.

Keep writing them down, too. As you go through your days, anytime you catch yourself saying, "I wish...," write it down.

Take a (big or little) risk

Now look at your list and choose a daydream to make a reality. It may be a bigger daydream, requiring a planning and organization (finishing your degree?), or maybe it's a small dream, one you can accomplish in an afternoon (plant a bed of pansies?). Whatever it is, choose something.

You may decide to scale up or down a dream. That's okay - as long as you still get some sense of satisfaction from achieving it. As in real life, dreams often don't become reality *exactly* as originally envisioned, but they can still happen.

No more excuses

While, true, you probably can't make all your dreams happen right now, it's no excuse not to get started on something. Achieving just one dream, no matter how small, may be just the impetus to start working toward other bigger and longer term dreams.

Not giving up on you daydreams - actually making them happen - is a wonderful lesson for our kids. When trying to teach our children balance in their lives, part of that balance is reaching for dreams!

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