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master steward
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pollinator
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Isthe dreaming really the problem? Or is it the inertia, the never stepping beyond the dreams?

Some people can never take the step for one reason or another. For some I'd say it was their own doing, but for others, it's an outside force preventing them. And sometimes those inspirational seminars are actually very helpful. It can put the dream seeds into someone's brain. It can nudge some seeds already there to sprout. And it can encourage others to take their first wobbly baby steps towards their dreams. In past years I sent my employees out repeatedly to inspirational seminars. One was not enough, it was the constantly repeated encouragement that kickstarted most of them to pursue at least a tiny bit of a dream. Sadly (my perspective only) only one seized the day and ran off to make her dream into reality. Sadly, most people are stuck on the dream phase.

One really good thing came out of all those inspirational seminars. While it wasn't the seminars themselves that gave me to giant kick in my ass, they gave me the courage to pursue my own dream. My second life started 2001 and I've never stopped pursuing my own lifelong dream.
 
master steward & author
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I love this. Dreaming is great, but actions achieve.

However, getting past that first step and gaining momentum is really difficult.

I use to get a kind of stage fright every time I had to write an exam in school. There I was, in a classroom, knew my stuff, but suddenly I have to write an essay on demand!?! Horrid! Couldn't do it. On my desk there was a pile of blank sheets of paper, waiting for my essay. Two hours to write the essay, an hour in, I haven't written a word. One day, I took each of these pieces of paper and wrote on the top of each one "this page is no longer blank". From there on, a two-hour essay was easy to write in under half an hour. I wrote like the wind blows. From there on in, whenever I have to write something on demand, I write "This page is no longer blank" on the top of the page. I don't know why it works, but those few words seem to make all the difference in the world. Sent me from barely passing to A plus with honours.

Then the internet was born. This was amazing because now I was no longer limited to my local library if I wanted to learn something.

Then I discovered forums. It was in forums, that I discovered the you-cant-cha people.

Imagine the playwright in the comic went to night school or wherever, to learn how to write. Imagine the teacher, instead of teaching how to write, spent the entire 6 months talking about how difficult it is, how none of them will be able to finish a script, and even if they did, they are too pathetic and unimportant for anyone to take notice. They would be crushed, stop dreaming, stop doing, go home and get fat eating ice cream.

That starting momentum to go from dreaming to doing is so important. I think, it's also exceptionally fragile. Those stuck in the dreaming stage and the disillusioned stage, can so easily destroy the momentum of those just setting out on the doing path. I feel it's the responsibility of people who have already started doing, to help those who are just getting going.



 
Su Ba
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Re: the responsibility of those already doing to help those who are just starting.

YES! Is that not part of the third ethic of permaculture? I take my excess built up momentum, enthusiasm, knowledge and give some of it away to people just starting out. For me it's in the form of hosting a community garden where people can come to share knowledge, gain knowledge, experiment, and try fresh foods that they've help grow. I spend one morning each week sharing my excess.
 
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opportunity is often missed because it's dressed in overalls and looks like work.
 
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Everything in life is about balance.

Dreams are good but at some point if a person wants to actually live the dream then they must start by committing to achieve the dream.




 
Su Ba
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I admire those people who can just walk up to the bull and grasp it by the horns. But I've not been able to do that. Everything I've accomplished since 2001 has been by taking baby steps. Once I force myself to take a dozen wobbly, fearful baby steps on some project, I can then begin to stride out fairly well. It's not that I'd label myself a failed dreamer or a non-self starter type. It's just that I'm hesitant in the beginning. But ya know, here I am 15 years later with a 20 acre homestead farm. That's cool! And guess what!......I'm no longer afraid of failure, of being wrong, or of looking the fool. Working on my dream has been good. Not without bumps, but good none the less.
 
Eric Rummler
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Su Ba wrote:I admire those people who can just walk up to the bull and grasp it by the horns. But I've not been able to do that. Everything I've accomplished since 2001 has been by taking baby steps. Once I force myself to take a dozen wobbly, fearful baby steps on some project, I can then begin to stride out fairly well. It's not that I'd label myself a failed dreamer or a non-self starter type. It's just that I'm hesitant in the beginning. But ya know, here I am 15 years later with a 20 acre homestead farm. That's cool! And guess what!......I'm no longer afraid of failure, of being wrong, or of looking the fool. Working on my dream has been good. Not without bumps, but good none the less.



Good for you! Su in my way of thinking it's not about being a bull or about being cautious it's about doing. I know so many people who live in fear of failure that they are stagnate & think so poorly of themselves, it's just a shame.

 
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When I was younger I wanted to go to university to study law but I did not have the funds to pay for it.  Each year one of the big local law firms gave out a scholarship that covered all the costs of tuition for the whole course of study.  My friend and I were both about the same academically but she said to me "Well, only one person can win so why bother to apply?".  I said "Well, they have to give it to someone: why not me?".

So I applied and I won it. In fact, I had already interviewed and been accepted at university before I knew how I was going to pay for it.  It was a big leap of faith but I have always found that you have to commit to yourself and your goal even if you cannot see how it is going to be fulfilled.  This is one of my favourite quotes:

"Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness.  Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth, the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too.

All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issue from the decision, raising in one's favour all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamed would have come his way."

Scottish Himalayan
Exhibition

     
 
gardener & hugelmaster
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One can either dream the dream or live the dream. Choose wisely.

There are always obstacles. Find a solution. Then make it happen. One baby step at a time. One foot in front of the other.

Be not afraid of moving slowly only be afraid of standing still. Chinese proverb.

 
gardener
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To me dreams are supposed to be acted out, not sat about.
I think it is a lot like taking a hypothesis to theory to proof to law in science those are the steps and you rarely get a hypothesis without some dreaming but from there it is the work that takes you the rest of the way.

Usually to get a mathematics doctorate you have to have an original thought that you take all the way to theory at the least.
It is the requirement, and If you don't dream, how could you come up with the original thought?
But then you must start doing the work or all  you've done is waste your time (Like the two girls in Paul's first post).

Redhawk
 
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Realistic dreams are a part of making hard work.
One may dream of having 100 acre food forest & training campus to teach the world, sounds great & can happen if you have $100,000,000.00.
But if you live in the city & have only a small amount of mad money at the end of the looog work week, then what?
Use what you have, the mortgage is holding you back, but it give you a quarter of an acre back yard.
With the mad money you build raised beds, arbors, a small green house & fruit trees.
Okay no training campus, but you are doing & learning, some one will notice & you can tell them/ teach them about what you are doing.
Bloom where you are planted, no pun intended.
 
pollinator
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Wow, this thread touched a nerve unexpectedly.  One of my biggest self-criticisms is feeling like I'm always just dreaming about what I want.  It's been a pretty shitty decade for me in almost every way.  That's also about the time-frame of my dream of owning a farm.  When I started going through all of this I took some time to try to figure out what I really wanted to do for the rest of my life.  I had grown up in a rural area, worked dairy, cash crop and at the feed store before going to university and I thoroughly enjoyed the work, especially milking.  So I figured that's what I would like to get back to, but in a way that made sense to me.  So that's been my end-game for about a decade.

Long story short:  I have a degree in civil engineering but started in electrical/mechanical engineering fields.  I'm unemployable as a civil but I have used it when I was in a partnership.  I've lost everything through divorce and getting forced out of the business.  Fun times.

But reading through the posts really got me thinking and made me really look at how far I've come.  I've noticed that I've been feeling much better about where I'm at, which is pretty laughable, but I've tried to put the last 10 years to use as I could.  I've had many set-backs but overall I've made a lot of progress.  I got electricity about 3 weeks ago, so 2 weeks ago I built an incubator and started eggs, started seedlings, and got chickens on very short notice on a shoe-string budget.  I couldn't buy a farm (still can't) but I'm renting a few acres that I can stay on so now I can start bringing it all together.  Without the experience I've gained from doing as much as I could get away with for the last 10 years, I wouldn't be able to jump into what I'm able to do now.  I don't think I appreciated that until reading through the thread.

The dreaming, though, has been an important part for me.  There have been a few times where that was just about all I could do and I feel very fortunate to have a plan at those times.  One thing I realised about myself reading this is that, while I've been doing a lot of dreaming for the last 10 years, I've mostly been dreaming about my next step.  I think that's been helpful.  I've also been doing as much doing as I could, but I guess I often lose that perspective.  

Thanks to everyone who has posted.  
 
Joe Grand
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Timothy Markus, you have a degree & was in a business, that a lot of dreams coming to past.
You will get the other dream in time.
Chin up, we are all pulling for you, you get the land & some of us, who live to far to drive over to help you, will send you cutting of our perennials to get you started.
I have figs & muscadines & will be collecting more every year.
 
steward & bricolagier
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Timothy Markus wrote:There have been a few times where that was just about all I could do


My health crashed VERY unexpectedly in 1996, I lost my business, my ability to work for a living, my friends, my relationship, my sanity. Over the next 15 years, some years were just bad, some I can't remember, and some I wish I didn't remember. There were years on end when I could do nothing but dream. I'd read books or the net, and draw designs for imaginary houses, give myself parameters, and create something to fit them.

The end result of this though, is that now when I am more stable, and was able to buy land, now that I have parameters for real, I am experienced at designing houses, and was way ahead of the game that way.

Sometimes, when things are bad, dreams are a great place to live, and it's even better if you get that chance to make them real. :)  I planned to start construction this spring, was ready, when the crap hit. Depending on how the Covid stuff shakes out, if the dream I want doesn't happen, I'll know how to design new ones to fit altered parameters.
 
paul wheaton
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This popped up in my email feed ...  

this morning I was looking over our new dailyish signup stuff.  It has been about four years of hard work, and it has been spread out over four years because this is not the fun work.  This is work.  Grind, grind, grind ...   But is is very important.  Nicole, Devaka and Bill have been helping a lot.  But we are now seeing strong growth!

This morning I also caught up on the site traffic stuff.  About a hundred people have access to the information, but I am the only one that summarizes it.   It is boring work that must be done.  The good news is that my permaculture empire has now received 151 million visits.  So about 151 million people.  And last month was a record month.  And it looks like this month will be a record month.

I produced the book, the movies/videos, podcasts, articles ...  I desperately need to get them into more brains and use the money to get them into even more brains.

The projects here:  allerton abbey is ready for the first year of proper annualized thermal intertia tests.  And the earthworks and fence are underway to create a magnificent permaculture garden.  We have quite a few boots in the bootcamp program and more boots on the way.   The berm shed is done and looking excellent.  And I hope we finish cooper cabin this year.  

On any given day, there are over a hundred people helping me.  It is definitely a community effort.  

The cartoon at the top of this thread is magnificent.  The dreamers often stop by to tell me that I'm doing it all wrong - and the only way to succeed is to be obedient to them.

I have so many arrows in me from haters and trolls, I suppose it looks a bit like a thick fur coat.   And the #1 thing that trumps office politics is productivity.  

I think me and my friends are changing the world.   And 95% of it is boring work.  Making reports.  Testing software.  Dealing with icky people.  Customer support.  Prioritizing lists.  Meetings. Emails.  Recording.  Editing.  Tidying up.  Digging holes.  Tripping trees.  Sorting out disputes.  Conveying information.  Teaching the 15th person the same thing in the hopes that they will actually do what was agreed to.  

That's what this thread needs:   a list of 200 boring chores that need to be done to make a permaculture dream come true.  

I hope that all of the boring work that thousands of people have put into these forums over the last 15 years makes it so that millions of people can achieve their permaculture dreams with a bit less boring work.
 
Sarah Elizabeth
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Timothy Markus wrote:

But reading through the posts really got me thinking and made me really look at how far I've come.  I've noticed that I've been feeling much better about where I'm at, which is pretty laughable, but I've tried to put the last 10 years to use as I could.  I've had many set-backs but overall I've made a lot of progress.

 



Timothy: With your great attitude, I have no doubt you will make a success of what you are doing now.  It takes guts to move on and make a new life for yourself.  

PS.  I really appreciate the pie.  Thanks:)

 
master pollinator
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Back in the 80s I took over a failing NPO.  According to the newspaper, prior to my arrival, it was looking into bankruptcy.  The organization has the best planners on earth.  Everything was carefully researched.  Reports were written. Nothing was implemented.  Nothing could be implemented because no one was willing to take a risk.   There was 6000 square feet of broken equipment ....no one would throw any of it out. No one would repair it. Both actions involved risk.  To see progress, someone has to pull the trigger. Someone has to assume responsibility. Someone has to make it work.
 
John F Dean
master pollinator
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To add to this, I have found that the fear of success is often far greater than the fear of failure. It makes sense. For most risks, if we fail, we stay where we are. We know where that is. However much we might complain, we are comfortable where we are. It is familiar territory. Now, if we are successful, our entire universe might change. We will have to make changes....we will have to make more decisions ........you know, I think I will stop writing this and grab a cup of coffee ...it is just easier....

 
master steward
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John F Dean
master pollinator
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I tend to me more action orientated. I like Mario Andretti's comment, "If you ever feel like you are in complete control, you aren't driving fast enough."  Which leads to a personal weakness of mine.  While I am excellent at implementing the visions of others, I am not much of a visionary myself.
 
If we don't do the shopping, we won't have anything for dinner. And I've invited this tiny ad:
how do we get more backing of the brk?
https://permies.com/t/145583/backing-brk
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