Theme parks are fun, but you can’t live in a theme park. If you find a way to bring your themes home, that will change your life.
“Don’t listen to anyone who tells you to follow your dreams. Following my dreams led to years of frustration and dead-ends. My life improved when I gave up on my dreams.“
From “Why ‘Follow Your Dreams’ is Terrible Advice,” published by the The Good Men Project.
Most mornings I can’t remember my dreams from the night before. These days, I’m doing well if I can remember to take my vitamins. When I do remember my dreams from the night before I just want to forget them, not follow them.
You might think I am being a dream Scrooge. No, I am not. One of my life themes is to try to be more like Yoda than Scrooge. Yoda does not have a lot to say about dreams, but Scrooge does. In the movie A Christmas Carol, Ebeneezer Scrooge is visited by four ghosts that haunt him into changing his life:
- The Ghost of his dead business partner, Jacob Marley (No, not Bob Marley’s brother. That would be weird).
- The Ghost of Christmas Past
- The Ghost of Christmas Present. This is my favorite Ghost. I like presents.
- The Ghost of Christmas Future.
- The Ghost of Christmas Heartburn is strangely absent. (This ghost will be in the sequel).
The 9 themes that will change your life
Scrooge is changed by following his themes, not his dreams.
Ebeneezer’s dream causes him to reflect on where his life is heading if he does not change. From that day forward he is different. Scrooge is changed not because he followed his dreams, he is changed because he followed his themes:
- Strive to be your best self. If you get off track, take time to reflect on who you used to be. Then get back at it. You can’t live in the past, but you can learn from it.
- Don’t be too hard on yourself. Be a little better each day.
- Sharing is more fun than hoarding.
- Give more presents. Everyone is happier when they have presents.
- Experience joy every day. Joy is like vitamins, you can’t store it up. Live your joy and give it away.
- Ghosts can be friendly.
- Your quality of giving determines your quality of living (not the other way around). What you give away comes back to you.
- You can’t take it with you, live fully each day.
- Chains are not fun, ever.
“Your quality of giving determines your quality of living (not the other way around).”
James Altucher has written about themes and his advice is very practical:
- Try to be just 1% better today. Over the next year, that 1% will multiply so high that you cannot even imagine how your life will improve.
- Make a list of your daily themes: being creative, being around people you enjoy, showing love to people, eliminate negativity or bringing joy to others.
- Write an I Did list at the end of the day. This will help you to feel more grateful and it is more fun than a long list of unfinished things.
Live your themes and your life will never be the same. If you want to be more like Yoda and less like Scrooge, join my tribe (and subscribe).
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Keep it Real
Theme park photo by Keoni Cabral