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Callings and Dreams

Callings and Dreams

You know what the difference is between a “calling” and a “dream”?

A calling is an emotional, passionate urge to commit yourself to something that you can immediately engage in, no matter how small or modest, part-time or full-time. A calling to help others can be satisfied with part-time volunteering at a charity or a full-time profession as a counselor. A calling to improve the community can prompt running for the school committee or planning board, or simply picking up trash.

A dream, however, requires outside intervention. The dream to act on stage requires others to recognize your talent, promote you, perhaps choose you over others who have even more talent, please the “judges” and the critics. The dream to create new medical procedures requires that a university accept you, a medical school accept you, and you be given the opportunity by other people to pursue your specialty and be funded.

Martin Luther King had a calling and a dream. His calling has enriched all of us, inspired us, and moved so many of us to be better people. But his dream still hasn’t been fulfilled.

Written by

Alan Weiss is a consultant, speaker, and author of over 60 books. His consulting firm, Summit Consulting Group, Inc., has attracted clients from over 500 leading organizations around the world.

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