When Is It Too Late to Dream?


She was  a pretty good golfer. We were hitting balls next to each other and she smiled at me a few times. “You have a nice, easy swing,” she said kindly. I interpreted that to mean “you hit like a girl.” As we talked about the game, I found out she had won the club’s member tournament for her age category. She’s 82. “I didn’t pick up the game until I was in my 60’s,” she beamed with pride. “Wow,” I replied. “there’s hope for me, then.” I’ve thought about that conversation a lot since that day. As I age, more and more dreams that I once had as a child seem to be further away from ever becoming reality. The question at hand, however, still haunts me from time to time, “is it ever too late to stop dreaming?”

Managing our dreams

Before you cast your vote, think about this. While we tell ourselves we are never too old to learn, grow, travel, try new foods, we seldom live that way. The older we get the smaller our circle of friends, favorite foods, and hobbies tend to get. We grow in years but we shrink in life quality. While aging is hard on the body, it can be liberating for our minds if we allow it to be.

I remember hearing someone close to me say that her best days are behind her. That’s not living life. I call it “managing death.”

Most octogenarians don’t get up and go on to win golf tournaments. But my friend does. She had a choice one day and she decided that even at 60 something, she had more to do in life and began to expand her circle. Chances are that she didn’t wait until retirement to become a dreamer. I’m still fairly young with a lot of dreams still left in me, but I can see the internal pull to begin circling the wagons, to become more careful, more selective. Aah, this mind shrinking has a way to insidiously find its way into our thinking.

One day we find ourselves managing death instead of pursuing life.

So to answer my own question, I say “absolutely not!” But I also know that’s not an easy task, and that I will have to fight against my natural inclination to shrink my circle and intentionally push my boundaries further every chance I get.

How do you fight against “managing death”?

  • Thank you for the post Maurilio. I’ve been telling people that what I am doing now I never dreamed I’d be doing 18 months ago. I think being open to new opportunities is one of the ways we stay open to dreaming. Listening to the heart of God for our lives is another. Although I am a pastor in a church that serves on average around 2500 people on the weekends, God has led our family to start a coffee roasting business. We have a daughter who is 37 and has Down Syndrome. We started it for her. It has grown and we’ve added staff and a new location. All this because we listened to the heart of God for us.nThanks for keeping an old geezer like me challenged. nBlessings,nDave

    • That’s a great way to continue to grow and push boundaries, Dave. I’m still waiting for my coffee. 🙂

  • Bob Jeffress

    I try to read books and surround myself with people who push me beyond my boundaries. Thanks for this post.

    • Bob, reading always helps me open up my mind and dynamic people make sure I’m living out the stuff I read.

  • Bob Jeffress

    I try to read books and surround myself with people who push me beyond my boundaries. Thanks for this post.

  • Daina House

    I actually didn’t even know what my dreams were until I got older. The hard part is fighting doubt, fear and unbelief – those triplets always seem to find there way into our lives on a daily basis – It’s easy to keep the dream alive when it sunny outside and things seems to be going your way..However, it’s much harder when it’s cloudy outside and you feel no movement. My motto is, never forget that God is the creator and at any moment, He can create a place for me to be standing in the middle of my dreams…

  • Shari

    “One day we find ourselves managing death instead of pursuing life.” nnWow – this is what I have been accepting in my life for several months now and I didn’t even recognize it! No more! It is time to seek new dreams and resurrect some of the old ones. nnI have allowed too many well-meaning people to tell me to stop dreaming, lower my expectations – that life won’t disappoint if I don’t expect so much. nnThank you!

  • I keep dreaming. Literally. I have so many dreams for my life that there is no way I’ll be able to fulfill them in my lifetime. They are dreams my kids, and even grandkids, will have to finish. And I’m always trying to learn something new, so that helps.

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