by Niall Doherty

Since I started my big round the world trip a few weeks back, I’ve heard the same exclamation from several people: “Wow, you’re really doing it!”

My initial, unspoken reaction is usually along the lines of, “Well, yeah. I said I was going to. What did you expect?”

What I’ve come to realize though is that not many people actually do follow through and walk their big dream talk. The fact that I’m doing just that doesn’t make me feel especially proud or exceptional. Rather, it makes me feel sad. Because what’s our word worth if most of us don’t even follow through on our biggest dreams? Making them real should be of the utmost importance to us, but it seems we let them slip away much too easily.

Take that post I published a few months ago, where I asked you to share your biggest, most ridiculous goals. The response was great — more than 100 comments — but now I’m left wondering how many of you were serious. How many of you are actively working towards those goals? Or other big goals you once set for yourselves?

I know, it’s easy to let them slip. When we give up on our dreams, we’re not really disappointing anyone but ourselves. Nobody is likely to call us out. But hey, you’re the most important person in your life. You owe it to yourself not to let that dream die.

So, allow me to provide a few wake up calls…

  • Hey Jacqui! How’s the singing career coming along? I fully expect to hear you dominating the airwaves when I get back to Ireland.
  • Hey Andrew! How many consecutive Bethaks and Dands are you up to now? Are you on track?
  • Hey Simon! Have you gotten any closer to racing across Alaska on a dog sled? What’s the next step you need to take to make that happen?
  • Hey Daria! Have you made contact with The Windhorse Project yet? If not, today would be a good time to reach out.
  • Hey Tracy! How are your big travel plans shaping up? Are you ready to get the adventure started?
  • Hey Lucy! What’s your 5k time now? Have you cracked the hour mark for the 10k?
  • Hey David! June ain’t that far away. How’s the website coming? Still writing every day?
  • Hey Kelly! That diner idea wasn’t just wishful thinking, right? What have you been doing the past few months to make it real?
  • Hey Jack! How many skydives are you up to now? When can I see you flying like a bird on YouTube?
  • Hey Jen! Still going diving with a Great White? And how’s your website coming along? It’ll be launched by the end of the year, right?
  • Hey Adrian! Won any tournaments lately? What’s it going to take to make it happen?
  • Hey Sarah! How’s the prep for those hikes coming? What progress have you made in the last few months?
  • Hey Josh! あなたの日本語改善くらいを持っています?
  • Hey Darshan! What’s new with the astronaut dream? Have you been getting some practice piloting different aircraft?
  • Hey De Zien! Are you still on track to visit those remote tribal villages? Where’s your next destination?
  • Hey Raul! I don’t see much change in North Korea. WTF, man?
  • Hey Daren! What’s the latest with that master’s degree? They’re waiting for you on Enceladus.
  • Hey Peggy! Still on track for February 21st? Dime cosas, mi amiga.
  • Hey Nigel! I’m still waiting for that first blog post. What’s the story?
  • Hey Cynthia! Any progress to report on that Alzheimer’s site? And how about those last 50lbs?

Let’s hold each other accountable here. I don’t want Disrupting The Rabblement to be just another blog you check out every now and then, read something inspiring, perhaps live a little vicariously through me, and then go back to living an unfulfilled life yourself.

No, screw that.

I want you to actually change the world for the better, whether your world or the world at large (and I happen to believe you can’t change the former for the better without having a positive impact on the latter).

And I’ll call myself out here, too.

You may remember that my own big ridiculous goal (besides traveling around the world without flying) is to become uber-fluent in four foreign languages before I turn 40. But I’ve been slacking with my Spanish the past few months. If anything, my level of competency has regressed. I plan to get back into it big time next week when I set up shop in Budapest for a month or so (currently I’m in Zurich). My mini-goal will be to practice at least an hour of Spanish each day, at least thirty minutes of which will be speaking practice.

Now, how about you?

Tell me, are you true to your word? Are you doing what you said you were going to do, working hard to make your dream a reality? Or, at the very least, can you say that you’ve given it your best shot?