This is How You Can Stop Dreaming and Start Doing

Devin C. Hughes
4 min readDec 15, 2017


A guy came up to me recently after one of my talks and said, “Devin, I don’t know what to do. I’m so sick of seeing other guys in my office live the life I want to live.

I’m sick of seeing them pull in the parking lot every morning driving my dream cars, eating out at Ruth Chris Steak House (while the rest of us order off the kid’s menu). I’m sick of dreaming about their lives!

But I have no idea how to change it!

What can I do?”

You want what Joe has.

And the truth is? Joe’s only special because he works harder than you do. He gets up every day, faces his reality, his competition, the economy and whatever life throws his way because he has to. Because deep down, he knows dreaming is never enough.

The difference between you and Joe? Joe knows the difference between who he is and who you are is what he does. What he does.

You sit around dreaming of what it’d be like to be Joe. Joe doesn’t sit around for anything. He’s always hustling. He’s always working his tail off. He’s always walking the talk.

But the last time you took a bold action, you ended up crying in your beer at the end of the bar… So you quit. You gave up.

That was it. One failed attempt and you were done. Welcome to Daydream City, Population: 1. Since that day, you’ve only dreamed about success. And it’s not only stopped your chances of becoming successful, it’s made you bitter and resentful of Joe and every other Tom, Dick, and Harry that you spot on the street wearing Success Cologne.

Change Your Pattern

Stop dreaming about having the things that make your mouth wet and get out and go try something hammerhead.

You want success? Get out of your own way. Go and touch it. Talk to it. Go See it again and again. The future is already here, it’s just not evenly distributed yet. Because dreaming about it? Will only keep you stuck in a holding pattern for the rest of your life. And will turn you into a bitter old hag stuck on Friends re-runs, hating Joey because even his life looks better than yours.

Success happens when you DO things. What’s your goal today, this week, this month? What’s your first step toward that goal? Now. Get out and get it done. No excuses allowed!

If you fall on your face? (And you will.) You get up. Wipe the dirt of your crisp, freshly dry-cleaned Brooks Brother’s shirt and you move along, with your head high and your eyes still swiftly focused on the prize. And you make your next move.

Because when you can do that, when you can fall down, get back up again, and take the next step? You’ve beat your demons and you’re that much closer to living the dreams that used to keep you awake at night.

Take the Steps

1. Spend the afternoon dreaming (I said it’s a good FIRST step, right?). Allow yourself time to visualize what you truly want. What you need from this life to make you happy. SEE yourself working toward that goal. FEEL how it feels to be successful like Joe. Feel yourself LIVING the grind that will make that success happen.

Here’s the catch: Don’t just visualize what it’s like to BE successful, but visualize the work that will make you successful. There is ample data that highlights that if you visualize “success” itself, your brain and spirit react as though you’ve already achieved it, and your need for it will dull. So visualize yourself successfully working the grind, not just you crossing the finish line.

2. Write down (pen and paper) what you need to do to make that success in your visualization happen. Do you need to reach out to new and bigger clients? DO it. Do you need to think bigger and more dangerously when it comes to actions that will get their attention? DO it. Do you need to double your sales by focusing your game? DO it. Be specific. And if you don’t know what to do? Find out. Ask and you may actually receive.

3. Lay out a timeline. Set a time frame for your goals. Because without a time frame? Say it with me now, “Goals are just wishes”. And YOU aren’t going to WISH anymore. It’s time to get real.

Note: Make your time reasonable. If you make your goals unreasonable and you fail to reach them, you’ll do more harm than good to your new found work ethic.

4. Assess again in 30, 60 and 90 days. You have to be able to work fast. So you have to assess quickly. After 3 months of honest-to-goodness blood, sweat, and tears, you need to look at where you are and judge if you’re headed in the right direction. You may find that you need to shift your goals or your timeline a bit. Be willing to do that.

5. Let go of perfection. Joe? He’s not perfect (even though he acts like he is). And neither are you. Work your grind. Do the hustle. Everyday. The best you can. Don’t sweat if you haven’t stayed on your timeline, as long as you’ve done the work, and done it to the best of your ability.

Follow this plan and Joe? Will want to know how YOU’VE come so far so fast. And when that happens, you’ll look at him and say, “I just decided that average is not such a good taste after all.”



Devin C. Hughes

Keynote Speaker | Mindfulness Maven | Happiness Muse | Author | Diversity & Inclusion Advocate |