Stop Telling People Their Dreams Are Unrealistic

Stop Telling People Their Dreams Are Unrealistic

When I was a young girl, I really wanted to be a vet. This dream lasted until I realised that being a vet didn’t just mean cuddling cats and dogs. I then switched tacks and decided that I was going to be the youngest published author in the world. The fact that a lot of my fantasy stories were heavily plagiarised from Eragon and Lord of the Rings didn’t become apparent to me until much later in life. However, the point is that I always had big dreams, and never pictured myself following a conventional life.

My dreams now revolve around travel and writing. I would love to live in different places all over the world, and write freelance to sustain myself. I would still love to have a book published one day, although my love for the fantasy genre has diminished. If I were to work a regular 9 to 5 job, I envision myself as a counsellor for survivors of rape and sexual assault. When I’m older, I would love to own and run a dog sanctuary with my partner. All of these dreams are unconventional, and will never make me much money. Due to this,  I get embarrassed to talk about my dreams to people who won’t understand.

People try to diminish those who have different dreams.

temple in Kyoto

It seems that people don’t like change, or people with radical dreams, because it challenges their cosy world view, or makes them feel jealous. It’s the same as people who get passive-aggressive towards me about how much I travel, because they haven’t made it a priority in their life. The kind of people who will say how lucky I am, before considering that I save 50% of every pay check and am always thinking of my next trip.

One of my least favourite things is people who ask me not to leave. I take months at a time off work so that I can travel. Most recently, I took 3 months off work to travel to South America. Before I left, I had some people at work asking me not to leave. This also happens when I mention that I eventually want to move interstate and then overseas. People become so wrapped up in their own priorities that they can’t see that these are my dreams, and they are incredibly important to me.

A couple of guys from my work have dreams to move to New York and live there. Coming from Australia, this seems like an almost impossible dream, especially considering the immigration laws of the US and how expensive it is to live in New York. But that doesn’t mean that it can’t be done. I have overheard people telling these guys that their dreams are unrealistic, and it really distresses me.

One of my pet peeves is people who try to minimise the dreams of others, or don’t take them seriously. I think that in society there is a box that people will try to fit you into, and they don’t like people who push outside of that. If you don’t have a degree, stable job, and hopes for a family and comfortable future (which isn’t for everybody), then ultimately people will find fault in what you do.

The world needs people with big dreams.

Autumn leaves in Kyoto

We need artists, writers, travellers, big-thinkers, and people who look outside of the box. Ultimately, we need people with big dreams.

I know a few people who think that you are of lower intelligence if you don’t study and practise in either law, medicine, or engineering. However, the world couldn’t function if everyone dedicated themselves to those causes. Without people in different professions, the world as it is cannot exist. Without artists and dreamers, the world is a stagnant and boring place. Without people who experience different realities and formulate new ideas, we can never move forward as a society.

If you are a dreamer, an artist, or a creator, keep doing you and don’t ever let anyone minimise your dreams.

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By | 2018-01-12T12:54:16+00:00 November 2nd, 2017|travel inspiration|25 Comments


  1. Karen Schelinski November 2, 2017 at 12:40 pm - Reply

    Beautiful and very well put. I have also been asked not to leave when I’ve traveled. Never totally understood it until now. People want you to stay within their orbit for their own selfish reasons. They can turn it around and make you feel like you’re being the selfish one for leaving. I try to remember that the issue is theirs and not mine.

    • Her Travel Therapy November 2, 2017 at 6:28 pm - Reply

      I don’t understand it because I would never do that to someone I care about! If my friends want to venture far away and realise their dreams, then that just makes me happy for them that they are living the life they want.

  2. Mary November 2, 2017 at 7:19 pm - Reply

    I completely understand where you are coming from. Some people don’t seem to understand those of us that lead unconventional lives and follow our dreams. But there are so many other people out there who will support you. I choose to surround myself with like minded people and move on from those that would try to judge.

    • Her Travel Therapy November 2, 2017 at 8:11 pm - Reply

      I’m glad that you’ve found a support network of people who support your dreams 🙂

  3. Niki November 2, 2017 at 7:56 pm - Reply

    I agree with you, we do need people with bigger dreams. But we also need those who try to diminish those with different/bigger/weirder/”unrealistic” dreams. WHY? Because sometimes in order to prove someone wrong, you work harder. It is also some kind of motivation. I think we just need to learn to listen to our own voice first!

    • Her Travel Therapy November 2, 2017 at 8:10 pm - Reply

      That’s true, naysayers can sometimes be a good push to prove people wrong and defy their expectations.

  4. Kelly Jean November 2, 2017 at 8:09 pm - Reply

    I think too many people do not dream big enough! So many of my friends and family back home keep telling me to just settle down and move back to Kansas, but posts like these remind me why I left in the first place!

    • Her Travel Therapy November 2, 2017 at 8:13 pm - Reply

      I hate people who tell you to settle down! Keep following your dreams and live life on your own terms.

  5. Tahnee's Blog November 2, 2017 at 10:37 pm - Reply

    Completely agree! Dream big and work hard. Not everyone will believe in you but as long as you do that’s what you ts. Thanks for sharing a great post

  6. Globejamun November 2, 2017 at 11:16 pm - Reply

    This is great. Well written piece. Yes we are allowed to have our dreams. However unconventional they are. I think it’s fabulous u save 50% of ur income to travel, and take 3 months off. So super cool 🙂

  7. Kasia Mikolajczak (@KasiaMikola) November 3, 2017 at 1:51 am - Reply

    I totally agree. I’m also a dreamer and I don’t like to just live a conventional life. I like to follow my passions and dreams and I know that makes some people uncomfortable. But without us dreamers the world would be so dull. Keep doing what you’re doing.

  8. Lisa K November 3, 2017 at 9:06 pm - Reply

    Without big dreams, we won’t have people doing whatever it takes to make them happen! I agree with you, and also love fantasy and LOTR too!

  9. Katchutravels (@Katchutravels) November 4, 2017 at 12:26 pm - Reply

    It’s essential to find some personal time to zone out into your dreams where no interferences or real world nay sayers can come in. Its a way to find peace with yourself and your dreams.

  10. The Travelling Mermaid November 4, 2017 at 7:17 pm - Reply

    This post is very agreeable. We need more creative people to color the world just like the artists hundred years ago. We need more history that the next generations could enjoy exploring!

  11. Anuradha Goyal November 5, 2017 at 3:27 am - Reply

    Dreams are the goals we keep chasing all our lives. This is where the joy of life is – wanting something, working towards getting it and having it. It is all within us, why does it then matter to us what other people think. When someone tells me I can not do something, I know they are saying this because they think they can not do it, hence I can also not do it. This is their limitation not mine. Having said that, I know I have my limitations and that is why I am amazed when people achieve or perform beyond that.

  12. Paige November 5, 2017 at 10:17 pm - Reply

    This is a beautiful post. I love that you have always had big aspirations. When I was a kid the first thing I wanted to be was a World Wildlife Photographer. Then it was an author – similar to you – and now our current dream and lifestyle are the same as well. I am very lucky that my immediate family has never made it seem unrealistic or stupid, but PLENTY of other people who have. GREAT reminder to not let people do that to us dreamer.

    • Her Travel Therapy November 7, 2017 at 10:39 am - Reply

      I’m so glad that you haven’t given up on your dreams! With jobs like that where there’s only a limited number of people who can do it, I feel like those people never imagined that THEY would be doing it in the first place. If you’re good enough, and work hard enough at it, you can achieve it.

  13. Hannah November 5, 2017 at 11:03 pm - Reply

    I totally agree, there is always room for the dreamers, the artists and the wanderers… life would be so dull without them! I dislike it when people tear down other people’s dreams, but remember, it comes from their insecurities and fears, and presents itself as negativity. It is their loss for not embracing new and exciting things!

  14. Boarding Call November 6, 2017 at 12:00 am - Reply

    I completely agree with you – it really bothers me when I hear others looking down on people for not having a conventional lifestyle – to each their own! I also find it strange when people seem to judge you for how much you travel – it is no one’s business how you decide to spend your money! Keep on doing what you love

  15. Kirstie November 6, 2017 at 7:13 pm - Reply

    There’s no such thing as big or small dreams. All dreams are personal, special, valuable, relevant! But, I think, when you get down to it, if you dream of getting a high-paying job, that’s because you want to live a good life- eat good food, experience the good lifestyle, discover the world!

  16. Rhonda Albom November 6, 2017 at 8:13 pm - Reply

    My daughter planned on being the world’s youngest authour when she was small. She’s too old for that now, but she does have a manuscript from NaNoWriMo from a few years back and a new idea coming into play for another novel. I always try to encourage my girls to strive to be whatever they want, and I’m not fond of people saying that someone should be less than what they want to be, As long as a dream isn’t impossible (aka sprouting wings), why shouldn’t they go for it?

    • Her Travel Therapy November 7, 2017 at 10:38 am - Reply

      That’s amazing that she completed NaNoWriMo! I considered doing it this year, but it’s a bit hard with how much I’ve been working and having so many therapy commitments at the same time. I hope to see her work in bookstores soon!

  17. Valerie Wheatley November 8, 2017 at 5:21 am - Reply

    So true! Sometimes it feels like if you choose not to get married, buy a house, and pop out some babies before you’re 30 that there’s something wrong with you. That if your dreams don’t involve having a career and a family people don’t understand you. I’d like to think that I’m a dreamer, an artist, and a creator and it’s helpful to read about you feeling similarly but also feeling judged by your peers because of it. Keep dreaming, keep traveling, and keep inspiring others to do the same!

  18. Elisa November 8, 2017 at 6:53 am - Reply

    Loved your conclusion: the world needs people with big dreams . . . I think that in the end, if people love you they won’t try to stop making your dreams come true. And the ones who try are, like you said, jealous and to be avoided! 😛

  19. Meg Jerrard November 8, 2017 at 10:41 am - Reply

    Good on you for holding steadfast in being a dreamer, and having big dreams. As a professional travel blogger, I know exactly what you’re talking about in having unconventional lifestyles / dreams – I think people are afraid of what they don’t know and understand, and if it’s beyond their comprehension they think it’s strange – like everything in life has to fit into a perfectly square box.

    Even in today’s world where possibilities are more accessible than they ever have been, people seem to still be fixated in their traditional mindsets.

    Thanks for this post. The world needs people with big dreams.

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