Couple of weeks back I watched the movie Revolutionary road. Kate Winslet and Leo di Caprio are this couple who got together when they were young filled with big beautiful dreams. The movie starts out with them quarreling and feeling miserable, with flashbacks to their previous happiness.
Currently she is a housewife. He goes to a job he hates and they share two kids and a house in a suburb somewhere in America. This is a representation of the american dream but underneath they are both dying. The reason being that the reality and experience they are facing in life are not representing the greatness they feel inside them. Now their hope is fading and life is tearing them apart.
"EXPECTATIONS THAT DON'T BECOME REALITY BRING YOU DOWN"
This is what we learn over and over again in life. In Finland we have plenty of sayings that in essence mean ”Do not get your hopes up, do not dream too big, you might get disappointed.” I know it is hard to handle failures and disappointments, but what if we live our life dictated by the fear of failure? How will our life turn out to be?
So does this mean that you should have low expectations or small dreams? Yes and NO. Yes, if you are not willing to step out of your comfort zone. Not everyone has to achieve big (whatever that means) things or live everyday like it is your last. You can be truly satisfied and happy with a life that would seem simple and unadventurous to someone who need more thrill in their life. We are all individuals.
Unhappiness here stems if you still caress big dreams and big expectations for yourself but you are not willing to pursue them, if you lack the courage to take the first step towards them. Then you start dying inside.
Your outside life does not match your inner world. You are not living true to your values.
Now that I really think about it more the only good answer is No, you should never have small dreams or low expectations. I say that you need to have fitting dreams and expectations. Fitting meaning here that they are right for your individual needs.
The movie continues with Kate remembering her husbands old dream of going back to Paris. She decides to pursue it. But disguises her own need for escape into fulfilling her husbands dreams. Classical example of how the feminine energy works, man is behind the wheel and the woman is pressing the pedal. Later this dream of hers turns out to really be an escape, dressed as a dream. How sneaky is that.
How can you be sure of where your dream stems from? Can we start tracking and measuring how strong your dream is truly? Will it carry you all the way there?
Is your dream really a pure golden dream or are you disguising your unsatisfactory something as a dream? This here represents the energy you are ready to put into achieving this dream.
I actually said to my husband after the movie: ”Should we move to Paris?” His reply was ”Didn’t you want to move to Stockholm?”. So definitely my golden dream that I am willing to work on is not living in Paris or Stockholm. It would be nice if it happens. But no, it is not a golden dream of mine.
I think I was just dealing with some insecurities and the thrill of a change was the thing for me. Are you familiar with the concept of when ”not knowing what future holds for you” creates a amazing feeling of anything is possible!? For someone this could be scary as shit, but I have always enjoyed it greatly. Did you feel something move inside you just now? Yes, it can be a sort of an addiction, at least a pattern.
So they decide to leave for Paris. Next ten or so minutes we watch them be on top of the world. In love. Intoxicated and free. They amuse themselves by shocking people around them with their news. They find such great joy in this ”good limbo” where they have decided to leave but are not yet living the reality of their drescape. It is a not a Disney movie, so the downhill starts when they come to face with a hard decision. This new situation reveals to the other person that Paris is not his dream after all. Oh how it breaks my heart to see her escape route falling into pieces and her trying to kling on anything she sees to ease the pain. But actually the underlying problem is not the difference in dreams. Paris is actually nobodys’ dream in this movie.
The difference lies in their needs.
When they first get together she feels like he is the most exciting person ever. Travel, change, excitement. She has met someone who can truly satisfy her need for adventure. Then life gets in the way. babies, jobs, housewifing…but the hope is still there. Hope for greatness. She needs that adventure, she needs new things and that variety.
At the end of the day his needs have changed. He is craving for steadiness, staying put and creating a career. He only liked to play with that illusion of a dream.
They are different. They have incompatible needs. That can easily happen with life. Now they are facing a situation where their needs do not match. Their dreams do not match.
What if she would have had the courage to find out and live her own dreams? Luckily you and I have the amazing opportunity to dig a bit deeper, in our real lives, to find out our needs, our wants, dreams...find the building blocks that truly have the ability to create the feelings of contentment and happiness. What do you need for 2017?
Renja is a love and transformation coach who inspires women to live lives true to themselves. Her strengths lie in listening and problem solving. Her clients describe her with words like: open, warm, firm, dedicated and creative. She is the founder of Ahaa Helsinki, that aims to bring down to earth coaching available for everyone. She believes in making decisions, creating visions and taking action. She absolutely loves what she does, and she is always open for women who are willing and committed to create better lives for themselves.
Renja has a master's degree in Economics and completed the Mentor Masterclass Life coach training program.
Renja writes two blogs: one in english here. And one in Finnish here.