Hi! I moved to a new place. I would love for you to visit me there.

How and Why I Downsized My Big Dream…Maybe You Should Do The Same?

Dreaming big became  a cliché in personal development arena.

Anywhere you go, pretty much at any blog you read now, you are encouraged to find your Big Outrageous Dream, take massive action and fly higher than the stars.

Otherwise you are not living your purpose and God forbid you don’t live your purpose!

Your life is a complete waste of time then.

I am all for flying high. I am all for living your purpose. And yes, I am all for stepping into your greatness that we all have.

That’s what I preach on my blog. That’s what I sell my coaching and workshops based on.

But…

Here comes Big But.

What if in a run after a Big Dream and high flights you are forgetting the True Dream? What if the Big Dream you have is not really what your soul wants?

Dreaming big for the sake of dreaming big is like getting married for the sake of getting married. Where will such marriage lead you?

Or what if you went wrong with the strategy of making your Big Dream a reality and as a result the dream itself became not so authentic anymore.

Personal story (don’t you love my personal stories?).

I had a big Vision. The vision was to open Positivity Places in every state in US and oh, well, the world!

Great Vision, LOVE it.

The core idea of Positivity Place is to make personal development routine for people and to create a community, a place for like minded people to get together .

Just like going daily or weekly to the gym to exercise your body, I saw people coming daily to my Positivity Place to exercise their spirits and souls.

Again, I love the Vision.

Then came the strategy, the plan and the tactics of making the Big Dream a reality.

I saw a huge place with several rooms for workshops, seminars, socials etc and common area with café to just sit, relax, sip coffee and get clear on your goals or anything else you might want to get clear on.

I loved that place. I could feel everything inside there. This is the place I’d want to go to myself.  This is the place I see a huge need for in our society.

But something didn’t feel right. My big Vision inspired me, but something was still missing.

Could it be because it was too big for me? I was scared to even think about that.

Too big? How can I teach anyone to step into their greatness if I myself think that something is too big for me?

Turned out “too big”  was not really a problem in my case. Thanks Divine!  Turned out I figured the Vision right but then went overboard on details.

How did I find that out?

Simple.  I asked myself –  What is the core feeling you want to experience when your Vision comes true?

This is the number one most important question you should ask yourself.

My core feeling is freedom. Creative freedom (this is the most important one!), financial freedom, time freedom  etc.

Freedom is everything to me.

Would I feel free running and growing that huge place? A place where I have to be at daily, work really hard, find investors for, spend enormous amount of time taking off the ground? Would I feel free?

I really doubt that.

What Freedom means to me:

  • Freedom means being location independent.
  • Freedom means staying flexible.
  • Freedom means not having to deal with investors who have certain demands.
  • Freedom means spending as much time with my son as I want instead of working  70 hours a week while someone else is seeing him grow.
  • Freedom is having a choice of when, how,  where and with whom.
  • Freedom means having enough time to create masterpieces on this blog.
  • Freedom means so much more but you get the picture.

And while all of that might be very possible down the road with Positivity Place but I doubt it will be possible for the first few years of taking a project like this one off the ground.

And my son is growing now. I really don’t want to take few years off of being involved in every minute I can of his life.

So the big Vision had to be reevaluated.

It really felt like I was giving up on my Big Dream while I was going through reevaluation process.

But then I realized that I was not giving up on the Vision. I was giving up on a certain way of making it a reality.

The Vision itself is still true. The Vision of making personal development routine for people and creating a community of like minded people doesn’t necessarily have to come true in a form of a huge place with multiple daily events.

It was never about the Vision. It was all about the details I was too attached to.

As soon as I realized that, it was like a huge burden that was lifted from my soul.

We can do maybe couple events per week or even per month. We can build a community based not on location but based on people and those people can get together anywhere. We can skip the in house café and cater certain events.

I can do so much without sacrificing the Freedom.

I can do so much while staying true to my core feeling and my core Vision. Most importantly I will stay true to myself.

So what’s your Big Dream?

Do you feel discomfort when thinking about it?

If yes, maybe it’s time to see if you got too wrapped up in details of making it a reality? Maybe it’s time to see if you are too attached to a certain way of doing it?

Or maybe even the Vision itself is really not your True Vision because it doesn’t ultimately satisfy your core feelings you want to experience?

So here are the steps to find all of that out:

1. Get clear on your core feeling. What is your core feeling(s) you want to experience when you reach your dreams? Why do you want what you want?

The true answer usually lies behind several “whys”. Keep asking yourself – Why do I want it? If you want more money, ask why? Maybe it is the feeling of security or confidence or ability to support a luxurious lifestyle that you crave for or freedom to travel the world.

Question “Why” can crack open your reality.

Another way to get clear on your core feeling is to imagine your Ideal Day. Close your eyes and see yourself living your Ideal Day. What do you see there? Most importantly how do you feel there?

2. Once you are clear on your core feeling, see what dream and what kind of way of making that dream a reality will satisfy your core feeling.

Don’t get too attached to details. Stay flexible. As long as the core feeling is going to be satisfied, details can be changed or adjusted along the way.

3. Don’t be afraid to change the Vision if the Vision itself doesn’t satisfy your core feeling. Even if you’ve been working on it for awhile, stop. What’s the point of making something come true if it won’t make your soul sing?

So what’s your Big Dream? Is it Your True Dream? Do you feel any discomfort thinking about it? Maybe it’s time to downsize the dream? Or upgrade it? Or change the plan?

Remember, it’s not about Dreaming Big, it’s about Dreaming Authentically.

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10 must-read posts from some of my favorite bloggers
April 5, 2010 at 3:13 pm

{ 48 comments… read them below or add one }

Ben April 5, 2010 at 8:49 am

Oh Lana you had me worried then. I thought I was going to read something about the fact we shouldn’t dream big at all. Phew! I’m so relieved.

You’re right, of course. The vision needs to be right all the way through. We need to consistently be checking whether the actions we’re taking are in line with our vision. If we keep questioning ourselves as the whether things are helping us to move towards our overall vision we’ll stay on course and not drift off to somewhere that isn’t right for us.

Great post Lana
.-= Ben´s last blog ..What to do with your internet earnings… =-.

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Lana April 5, 2010 at 4:44 pm

haha, you can’t imagine how I was worried! Consistently checking or clarifying is the key! Thanks Ben!

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Greg Blencoe April 5, 2010 at 2:16 pm

Hi Lana,

I really enjoyed this post. Your frustration with being so busy was pretty clear by reading some of your recent posts. And I can feel the sense of relief that you have in this post.

I’ve noticed in my life that when it feels like I’m always running uphill with something (and the faster I run the steeper the hill gets!), that it is usually wise to turn around and run downhill.

However, as I was reading this post, I kept thinking:

Daring Clarity = Positivity Place

Perhaps this was what you meant when you said this:

“The Vision itself is still true. The Vision of making personal development routine for people and creating a community of like minded people doesn’t necessarily have to come true in a form of a huge place with multiple daily events.”
.-= Greg Blencoe´s last blog ..Letting go of certain relationships =-.

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Lana April 5, 2010 at 4:46 pm

Thanks Greg. Interesting how you put Daring Clarity and Positivity Place together. To be honest they are different in my mind and I’ll write a post someday how both of these projects fit my purpose.

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Keith Davis April 5, 2010 at 2:31 pm

Hi Lana
Comes down to the old saying… be careful what you wish for!
Maybe it’s in the striving for our dreams that we find fulfillment, not in the achievement.

Most of us have a big dream, getting that job, winning the lottery, winning a gold medal.

Final old saying “If your life’s no good without a gold medal… it won’t be any good with one”.
.-= Keith Davis´s last blog ..A helping hand… =-.

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Lana April 5, 2010 at 4:47 pm

Definitely be careful what you wish for! Thanks for stopping by Keith.

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JB King April 5, 2010 at 3:43 pm

In a way, I’ve often dreaded the question, “What do you want?” as I’m never sure what I really want. I want to feel that I changed the world, that I mattered, had some significance. My ideal day would be spent with loving people that could easily share that joy as various stories are told with good food and drink so no one goes hungry or thirsty on my day. In a way it is rather simple, but I’d link to think part of that is that as I try to add things, it just gets really complicated in various ways and I kind of like a simple idea.

If I could just figure out how to get my soul some singing lessons. Maybe that is where part of my problem is, I just never got some things straightened out in my life. I’ve often said that I’m a work in progress and this just re-affirms some of that, but I like the idea of continually getting better rather than being the best and having nowhere to go.

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Lana April 5, 2010 at 4:49 pm

I think we are all works in progress and I think you are progressing in the right direction JB:) Singing lessons might be just around the corner.

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J.D. Meier April 5, 2010 at 3:44 pm

I think it’s similar to “think globally, act locally.”

The irony of freedom is that choices, maximizing, and opportunity cost … can cost us our happiness (I’m reading The Paradox of Choice and it’s powerful stuff and it’s giving me a whole new outlook on freedom.)
.-= J.D. Meier´s last blog ..The 8 Steps to Wealth =-.

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Lana April 5, 2010 at 4:50 pm

My thoughts exactly JD details of making the Vision a reality can cost happiness, but they don’t have to!

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Nadia - Happy Lotus April 5, 2010 at 5:12 pm

Hi Lana,

Yes, I do love your personal stories and thank you so much for sharing your story regarding your big dreams.

Many times people want big things but they do not realize what it will do for their lives. That is why it is so important for people to know what is priority for them and what they are willing to deal with.

Some people love working 70 hour weeks and others want only 40. Some people are happy working really hard and others are not. So it depends on the person and being true to who we are.

Good for you for recognizing all of this and sharing it with us. Your advice was just perfect.

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Lana April 5, 2010 at 9:33 pm

Dear Nadia, thank you for your support and I am so glad you like my stories:) Figuring out priorities is the best way to go!

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Jeremy Johnson April 5, 2010 at 6:03 pm

Having Positivity Place’s all over the world – that’s an awesome vision! I’m glad to see that you were real with yourself in what you wanted to do with your time – the freedom you desire. Sometimes this does mean cutting back the scale of the grand ideas we have – I’m so glad you pointed this out.

Question for you – I have a big vision for what I want to do. I know it involves a lot of work – particularly on myself and getting myself prepared. I know I will be places that will require me to be sharp and a master at speaking and understanding the material I am sharing. What would be the best way to get clarity in the balance I know I need to have with my family and my work – because I don’t mind working even 18 hours days because I love the work I am doing?
.-= Jeremy Johnson´s last blog ..The Ant Philosophy =-.

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Lana April 5, 2010 at 9:59 pm

Jeremy, core feeling is the answer to everything I believe. What is the core feeling you want to experience ultimately? Is it possible to reach that core feeling having balance? If yes, than maybe you don’t need to work 18 hours days. If not and if you love doing that, then 18 hours days is what will work for you right now. Also of course talking with the family will help, but you know that already:) Priorities and core feeling are what’s important.

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Jeremy Johnson April 5, 2010 at 10:03 pm

Right now my core feeling is learning, doing, and experiencing all that I can right now. I think there might be a way to have my family included in this – you’ve given me an idea. I actually feel best when I work to my exhaustion point – rest is so much better and I feel fulfilled. Thanks for your response!
.-= Jeremy Johnson´s last blog ..The Ant Philosophy =-.

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Lana April 5, 2010 at 10:15 pm

glad it was helpful. I think your core feeling is fulfillment ultimately. That’s what you answered in the interview too.

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Hilary April 5, 2010 at 8:50 pm

Hi Lana .. it’s being prepared isn’t it, while being flexible to rethink. Becoming ginormous for the sake of it isn’t all .. and I can see your blog being your positivity place – however you say they’re different .. so that’s great and I’m sure they’ll synchronise together.

I have thoughts for my blog and developing it out – that for now is the future .. and each day offers new opportunities .. new ideas – within the boundaries of my life .. but that’s expansive.

Looking forward to hearing more – all the best – Hilary
.-= Hilary´s last blog ..Who would have thought Barbary Apes would be eating our greens? =-.

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Lana April 5, 2010 at 10:01 pm

They do synchronize together Hilary. And yes opportunities and ideas are everywhere, it’s all about figuring out what’s more important.

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Hulbert April 5, 2010 at 10:48 pm

Hey Lana, nice post on dreaming big. I like how you get us to ask why we want our dreams. I think asking “why” is one of the most important things to ask ourselves when we don’t feel motivated to take action anymore. You also touched on something else important which is our core feeling. If we don’t actually feel anything while we visualize our dream, then I believe it’s harder to attract it into our lives. It’s good that you remind us of these things because visualization and how we feel are two necessary components for having the enthusiasm everyday to take the necessary actions in order to reach our dreams. Thank you Lana.
.-= Hulbert´s last blog ..Mark Cuban and Grit =-.

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Lana April 6, 2010 at 1:43 am

yes Hulbert, whys” lead us to core feelings and those are extremely important.

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Suzie Cheel April 6, 2010 at 1:19 am

Thanks Lara,
this post has reminded me that I have moved away from my core value/ feeling: freedom as yours, I am in the process of making a new vision board for my year of living large, that freedom needs to now be more prominent
Namaste
Suzie
.-= Suzie Cheel´s last blog ..Monday Inspiration =-.

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Lana April 6, 2010 at 1:43 am

Suzie, I am glad I reminded you of that:) Freedom is a core feeling for a lot us I believe.

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Boris April 6, 2010 at 2:32 am

Dear Lana,
Thanks for sharing this process of self-evaluation. As long as you stay loyal to your passion, Life is great!
All the besst,
Boris
.-= Boris´s last blog ..Four ways of sharpening your Brain =-.

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Lana April 6, 2010 at 3:47 am

Thanks Boris, life IS great!

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Walter April 6, 2010 at 6:40 am

I hope you won’t laugh at this but my dream is to be the greatest writer the world has ever known. It’s pretty huge and with my lack of genius and creativity, I find it doubtful my dream to become a reality. However, I always believe that I’m the master of my fate; that whatever I want I can achieve if I work each day for it. But then a realization dawns upon me; the question arises: what for?

With deep contemplation I found that my purpose is to extend my craft to others for their benefit. All that I’ve learned and all the wisdom I gained I want to share to my fellow human beings so that they will avoid the mistakes I have had. 🙂

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Lana April 6, 2010 at 5:01 pm

Walter, I know there is a huge genius and creativity inside of you! And you are right, becoming a greatest writer for the sake of being a greatest writer is useless, you got your focus exactly right – extending your craft to those who benefit. If on the way you become a greatest writer, great if not you still lived your purpose.

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Dragos Roua April 6, 2010 at 7:07 am

The conclusion really blew me out: it’s not about Dreaming Big, it’s about Dreaming Authentically. Too often forgot and one of the biggest alienation sources of our modern world. Big and small are perspective-related things. What’s big for me may not be big for you. Having a family and raising kids could be the biggest dream for me, while still feeling boring for somebody else.

Cutting the rope at the authentic part is the best thing you can do. Big and small are just conventions, being authentic it’s not. 🙂
.-= Dragos Roua´s last blog ..The Magic Fairy Exercise =-.

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Lana April 6, 2010 at 5:08 pm

Thanks Dragos, that conclusion blew me away too! and you are right, everything is relevant, what’s important is to stay true to yourself.

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Kim April 6, 2010 at 7:52 am

Hi Lana,

I’m happy to finally visit you here!

Thank you for sharing your personal experience. By asking the right questions and shifting perception, I love how difficulties can just fall away.

I’ve experienced minimizing my own valued freedoms with self-imposed rules as to how things ‘should’ be done. It’s important to check within to be sure our actions actually lead us to desired outcomes in a way that does not compromise our feelings.

Thank you for sharing the importance of checking in with your heart.

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Lana April 6, 2010 at 5:10 pm

Hi Kim, thanks for stopping by. Right questions is the key, absolutely. And it’s so great to realize that there are no “shoulds”, there is only you and your heart’s desires.

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Tess The Bold Life April 6, 2010 at 2:18 pm

Lana,
This is so wonderful you just get better with every post and I love watching you, learning from you and becoming a part of your community! I love how you choose your son over a big dream. No doubt when he’s grown up you’ll have even more freedom to go big because he’ll be able to fly on his own. The popularity of going after it all or being left out is like seeing it as black or white. No need for that. You’ll lose everything in between and it’s usually stuff you’ll regret. Life stuff filled with people who make our lives meaningful. Priceless stuff. Love the conversation mode you have when you write! xo Tess
.-= Tess The Bold Life´s last blog ..Dragos Roua Entrepeneur and Author That Rocks! =-.

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Lana April 6, 2010 at 5:15 pm

Tess, dear, thank you for being a part of my community, I am so honored to have you here:) And thank you for all your support!
.-= Lana´s last blog ..Clarity Series or Questions to Crack Open Your Reality – Episode 1 =-.

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Jarrod@ Optimistic Journey April 6, 2010 at 5:10 pm

Hi Lana!

You make a great point! We all preach about the importance of dreaming big but we don’t establish the importance of passionate dreaming. This leads to our readers feeling obligated to dream about something but it might not be what they’re passionate about. Thanks for sharing!!
.-= Jarrod@ Optimistic Journey´s last blog ..You Know You’re Favored by God When… =-.

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Lana April 6, 2010 at 5:17 pm

Exactly Jarrod. Some people probably feel like they are less “great” just because they don’t have a “big” dream. It’s not about “big” dream. It’s about having a dream that is “yours” and believing you can have it.

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Jenn April 6, 2010 at 5:52 pm

Lana, I love this: Remember, it’s not about Dreaming Big, it’s about Dreaming Authentically….and how first round,…It was all about the details I was too attached to. so true! have a lovely day! ~Jenn
.-= Jenn´s last blog ..Holding on to Love to "Get Very Clear!" =-.

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Lana April 6, 2010 at 6:13 pm

Thank you Jenn:) You have a lovely day too!

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Anastasiya April 6, 2010 at 8:10 pm

Lana, dreaming BIG was bugging me a little bit too lately. I completely share your irony about the obligation to dream big in personal development.
I like your idea about authentic dreaming. Somebody’s big dream can seem very tiny in another person’s eyes. The size of a dream really does not matter. What matters is the importance of this dream, the purpose and the meaning for a particular person. Changing lives of hundreds of people in a positive way might be a big dream but changing just one person’s life for the better might be just as big. I think that today we all fall victims of materialistic details, quantities and statistics, however none of them can actually make us happy and our lives meaningful.
I am all for authentic dreams!
.-= Anastasiya´s last blog ..Get Your Copy of My Free EBook =-.

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Lana April 7, 2010 at 12:44 am

Anastasiya, I knew you would understand me:)

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Marc Winitz April 7, 2010 at 4:22 am

So Lana, you are skirting around the edges here (I think) and you have everything you need (vision, start of a real community, energy and a good idea). Launch “Positivity Place” virtually. No one is really doing this. You can still have the dream, it just may take a different foundational shape than the bricks and mortar thinking you had in mind. I really think you can do this and it is achievable.

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Lana April 7, 2010 at 5:09 am

Thanks Marc for the encouragement. My virtual thing is Daring Clarity. Positivity Place is meant to be face to face:) Little steps and I’ll get there!

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Cayden January 21, 2012 at 7:57 am

It’s always a relief when someone with obuvios expertise answers. Thanks!

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Amit Sodha - The Power Of Choice April 7, 2010 at 1:27 pm

Awesome article lana of getting to that place of of the real reasons behind our dreams. So many people miss that, I do occasionally too! I love your final quote…you could make that your tagline! 🙂
.-= Amit Sodha – The Power Of Choice´s last blog ..500th Post Celebration – A Big Free Unique iPod Giveaway =-.

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Lana April 7, 2010 at 3:24 pm

thanks Amit. i thought of utilizing that quote too…somehow:)

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Goal Setting April 7, 2010 at 3:41 pm

Tis a wise exercise to begin with the end in mind, even moreso when pondering your ‘Big Dreams’

Try to envision your life today and tomorrow, but also when you’re 60, 70, 80 and everything in between. Sometimes that alone will challenge you or cause you to see the bigger picture. Every big dream comes with a price. And sometimes while the big dream is bold and beautiful, we realize that we are not willing to pay the price. There is no shame in walking away from a dream that no longer fits.

Live Your Dreams,

Jill Koenig

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Joy April 8, 2010 at 6:05 am

Thank you Lana,
I love this! My “big dream” and my soul dream are completely different. And I’ve recently taken the steps to re-align the two. My big dream was out of sight big, and quite frankly a bit overwhelming to contemplate. My soul dream is doable in steps every single day..healthy whole steps of reaching out exactly as I know best growin gmyself and my gifts in doable phases…I’ve found in re-organizing that I’m often having to explain why I am not aiming higher, when I know what I am aiming for is genuine and true. I don’t want huge and magnificent, I want simple and genuine…and that is okay.
.-= Joy´s last blog ..Let it Be… =-.

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Vanessa April 3, 2011 at 4:33 am

Lost and need help finding what I want, however there are two or three things i want to do. U said not to dream too big whats too big? If the poor is unhappy and the rich/wealthy is unhappy where is the perfect medium?

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