Dreams versus memories. If someone forced you to choose, which would you rather have and which would you go without?
Arguably, older people should concentrate as much as possible on dreams and younger people should collect memories. If you’re older, make that bucket list long and bold. You’ll enjoy the remaining time so much more. If you’re younger, be open to opportunity, capture experiences and you’ll certainly be on the road to collecting a foundation of great memories.
Sometimes younger people struggle socially. In the down times, great memories will give you confidence to move forward. Having goals and dreams are good too, but you still need energy to get you there. Ironically, for older people, their long term memory typically remains sharp, as their short term memory fades. Another reason to build great memories while you’re young.
Memories are obviously about the person you were and represent past dreams and experiences translated into action. You can’t change them, but you can alter your recollection. Dreams you can alter in a heart beat. It doesn’t mean you should. Keep some enduring dreams up your sleeve, if only to challenge yourself and feed the journey.
If you’re lucky, some dreams will be to re-create past memories e.g. reunions with old friends to share repeat experiences. In my case, I never feel disappointed visiting a new destination but not having quite enough time to see all the things on the ‘to do’ list – having a reason to return is a dream kept alive.
How do you control the memories and stop the selective focus setting in by default? Take pictures. Write down your impressions. Make friends and leave some kind of digital imprint behind. It’s the only way to remind yourself that it really happened, who was there and that it was an open chapter at some point in your life.
Every picture tells your story…