Some Dreams are Bigger than Others. Some Dream’s Fathers are Bigger than Other Dream’s Fathers.*

vanilla-sky(What a cool gas station)

“Ms. Bessy is sooo lucky!” says Zack on the drive home from piano lesson.


“She lives right next to a Little Caesars.  I wish we could live next to a Little Caesars!”

Some dreams are bigger than others.


This wasn’t the first time they’ve drooled over fast-food pizza.  For Zuzzy’s 6th birthday, she wanted Pizza Hut, Doritos, and a cake made out of Dunkin’ Donuts stacked like a pyramid.  

Mind you, we live a few blocks away from one of the best pizza restaurants in the city, with a wood-burning Renato oven and almost all ingredients made in-house.  My kids love it.  But that’s not what fills their imagination.  Pizza Hut does.  Children sometimes dream such small dreams.

So do adults.  When I first moved into my house, one of the things I was most excited about was living near a gas station. I’m not joking. You mean I can get 2 hot dogs for $3 anytime I want and an icee?

Adult Dreams

We want to be rich and have nice stuff.  We want to be comfortable.  These dreams aren’t wrong. They’re just small.  Many of us, if we were to ever land the job that pays us the salary to become as rich as we’d like to be, we’d find that most of our waking hours are filled with stress, pressure, and surrounded by miserable people. Put it this way — no one is going to pay you a high salary unless there’s a lot at stake (often times it’s health or money**).  Most people I know making this kind of money — they are more than half of my friends and acquaintances — aren’t happy. But because it pays for a fancy life, we also feel stuck. I’m not going to pull my children out of private school.  I’m just going to gut it out. Sucks.

Our dream has become a nightmare.  Because in most cases:

High Income = High Challenge (Stress) + High Time Usage

What would it look like to dream bigger?  Is there really a better way?  I’m on a mission to find out.

Two experts have shared tips to address that ugly equation.

Facing challenges: Get some insight from Jay Wright, coach of the Villanova men’s basketball team, who shared with a room of us how he led his team to victory in what’s been called the greatest men’s college basketball national championship game ever.

Making time: Read my interview with Michelle Schroeder-Gardner, who hacked the system, building a near 7-figure business while giving herself the ability to travel wherever and whenever she wants.

Dreams of Our Fathers, or Father of Our Dreams?

As adults, sometimes we dream small dreams. And the father of these dreams — fear, greed, ego — are small as well when measured against the potential to solve big problems.  Sometimes we’re looking ahead at the gas station when there’s a big, beautiful sky above us.


*With apologies to The Smiths.

**Let’s be honest. Most of the time it’s money related. The “valuable” jobs are the ones that either make money or prevent a company from losing money. Fail to land those deals, and the company doesn’t make its quarterly targets, and the stock price dives, and the CEO’s compensation may be lessened. You’ve cost management and investors money. Don’t want to lawyer up? If something happens, your company gets sued and it costs millions to defend itself. You’ve cost management and investors money.


  • NothingImportant2Say October 1, 2016 at 11:28 pm

    I’m on the same mission! Can’t wait to read your interview posts!

  • amileinmyshoes October 2, 2016 at 10:36 am

    Look forward to the next 2 posts. I stopped working when my son was born and my husband also got a new job with a 60% decrease in wage. We went from very well off financially to properly skint. We were so much happier though, having more time to enjoy simple things and we weren’t filling up our free time with expensive ‘treats’.

  • jsant1214 October 4, 2016 at 12:32 pm

    I couldn’t agree more with everything you described above. While preparing for my Accounting degree I evisioned the many ways I intended to climb up the ladder and have a high salary job. At a young age I was granted several career opportunities that were pretty grand for someone my age. I soon discovered the awful truth you mentioned above – higher salaries come with more stress, more hours, and less times for the people and things I love.

    After careful decision I took a pay cut and now have the work life balance I desired and needed. Life is short . On their death bed I don’t think many people would say, “I wish I would’ve spent more time in the office.”

    • justmakingcentscom October 4, 2016 at 1:03 pm

      Here here! It’s interesting how we live unreconciled (had to pop in an accounting word given your background!) lives. On one hand, we’re working so hard for the “good life” (high income & lots of stuff) even though we know that in the end, we’re going to wish we had spent less time working and more time with loved ones. So let’s work toward our “end goal” (literally speaking) now.

      I’m actually going to be writing about this very thing next week!

      • jsant1214 October 4, 2016 at 1:24 pm

        lol – love the accounting word 🙂 I look forward to reading your upcoming posts.


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