How To Do a Dream Book

How To Do a Dream Book

Welcome back to Part 2 in our Dream Book series! If you missed Part 1, be sure to read our post What is a Dream Book to learn all about what a Dream Book is and why you should start one now. For those of you itching to create your own, let’s dive into the specifics of how to craft your Dream Book.


1. Set a Date with Yourself.

Yes, this is an exercise but not the type that is one-and-done. To get the most out of your Dream Book, we recommend committing to six consecutive weeks, about 30 minutes for each session per week. If this seems overwhelming, try incorporating this into one of your weekly routines, such as enjoying a cup of coffee on a Sunday morning or a half hour before turning in for the night. Making this commitment is essential to ensure you live the retirement of your dreams, and your future self will be grateful. After all, this critical time is for you. Jot this time in your planner or set a reminder on your phone. Congratulations on committing to living out your dreams!

2. Prepare your Dream Book/Get Out Pen and Paper.

Now the fun begins! Instead of relying on electronic devices, return to using paper and pen. You can easily pick up a spiral notebook, like the kind you used in grade school. Or you can buy a journal and allow your creativity to thrive. Whether stickers, laminates, or full-cover decoupage, craft your Dream Book with an aesthetically pleasing look that excites you. Decorating your journal will encourage you to take ownership of your Dream Book and keep you excited to return to this exercise.

3. Think Back.

Once you’ve readied your Dream Book, it is time to dream. No, this doesn’t mean creating a bucket list or life plan with tasks to complete. Instead, return to all those dreams you had as a child. To help encourage your dream-centered mind, ask yourself the following: If I never had to worry about money, how would I like to spend my time? What other careers did I want to pursue? What other classes did I like but I couldn’t take because they were not in my major? What did I want to be before life forced practical choices? As you journey through your Dream Book exercise, you may find that you’re jotting your dreams down page after page in the first few sessions. However, a few weeks in, you might be disappointed to think of only one or two things. Some sessions may involve staring at a blank page for 30 minutes. This is normal. Often, it takes your subconscious mind more time to bubble up on ideas. Staying true to your commitment, you’ll find that you’re back to writing down your dreams with ease next week.

4. Stick with It.

Once you’ve reached your sixth week of dreaming, review what you’ve written over this time. Do you notice any recurring themes or dreams as you glance over the pages? Be sure to circle or highlight these. Reviewing your work provides a clearer picture of your forgotten ideas that have now resurfaced. However, this exercise does not stop once you close this book. Now is the time to commit to action. Perhaps you’ve rediscovered your love for astronomy. This discovery does not mean you must go back to school and get a Master’s in Astrophysics. Instead, you may find a local stargazing meetup or observatory where you can
become a docent, which could require minimal training. By utilizing your Dream Book, you can take small steps to live out your dreams while enjoying a happy retirement.

As you can see, dreams are not only meant for when we go to sleep. The Dream Book exercise allows you to tap into all those hopes and dreams that have gone unnoticed for too long. Choose to value your retirement and try this exercise for yourself! Are you ready to dream?

Any opinions are those of Traci Meakem Richmond, JD, CDFA™, RICP® and not necessarily those of Raymond James.  Expressions of opinion are as of this date and are subject to change without notice.  The information has been obtained from sources considered to be reliable, but we do not guarantee that the foregoing material is accurate or complete.  Links are being provided for information purposes only. Raymond James is not affiliated with and does not endorse, authorize or sponsor any of the listed websites or their respective sponsors.