The Dream Hooks Us Early
|Chris / Just Rolling with It||Nov 25, 2019|
Ideas on pursuing our individual dreams, not the dreams of others. Learning to hear our inner voice to guide us toward them while filtering out the noise of modern society’s dream pushers.
My wife and I are deep in the kindergarten public school search for our son. This is a particularly intense process in New York City.
It’s a priority-based lottery system. The priorities take into account zones, districts and siblings. For us, because we don’t want to send our son to our zoned school, it means lots of research, as well as many tours and applications.
We attended our first tour two weeks ago and our second this past week. I Tweeted this after the first tour -
My wife and I attended our 1st NYC school tour today. I had a feeling the process to find our son's kindergarten would consume more time/attention than my college search process did. After today, I'm convinced of it 😬
10:00 PM - 13 Nov 2019
A follower I know well and enjoy interacting with on Twitter sent this reply -
@cjremus If you screw up the NYC preschool search, your kid might never make it to Yale at all
10:59 PM - 13 Nov 2019
In return, I explained -
@JTremback It's not about that for us. It's more about finding a safe, warm, welcoming and open-minded learning environment that doesn't push test scores as the "be all, end all", while not costing $$$$$$$$.
9:09 AM - 14 Nov 2019
Yet even through Yale isn’t the point for us, Jehan had a point. It’s been in my consciousness since then.
The comment got me thinking about how early The Dream catches us. For some, the on-ramp may be as early as kindergarten.
My sense is that once one enters the on-ramp, there’s no turning back. Life only starts moving faster the older we get. If not conscious about it, we gain momentum on The Dream’s slippery slope. We become increasingly invested in and focused on The Dream’s path.
As life gets busier and more complex, decisions become more automatic. The Dream Pushers like it this way. They claim to make the decisions easier. They do this by providing a well known and accepted path. We confuse this ease with stability and comfort.
Before we know it, The Dream is the only game in town. It’s the only path we see.
If we do happen to second-guess The Dream, we feel too invested to change course. The switching cost is too high. We have too many responsibilities.
We may tell ourselves that once we hit a certain Dream milestone, we’ll take the next exit off The Dream highway.
Yet when we reach that exit, we’re going so fast we fly right past it.
We hurdle toward the next milestone, then the next and then the one after that, at ever increasing speeds.
It’s my sense that this is one aspect of The Dream that give it such a powerful grasp on us.
How about you? When did you take The Dream’s on-ramp? What exit do you hope to take?
Let me know by responding directly to this email. I reply to every response.
Catch you next week,
This section hasn’t manifested the way I intended. By the time I get to it, I’m usually too burnt out to write anything.
I started a new blog to capture these thoughts instead. It’s a place I can write short posts in an unstructured way. If you’d like to follow-along, you can find and subscribe to it here. This section will be retired after today.
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