WHAT IS A DREAM CIRCLE & WHAT HAPPENS AT ONE?
How did the Dream Circle idea originate?
I was a very involved student leader during my undergraduate degree at the University of Toronto and law school at the University of British Columbia. I received student leadership awards from both schools, have lots of international and cross-cultural program development experience, and loved being a residence advisor and building community on campus.
Yet when I graduated law school, I felt isolated in trying to achieve my goals, stay motivated towards them, and find resources and connections to move forward. I longed for more depth in my relationships with others, and missed the sense of community I had in school.
What starts with just an idea, can become a turning point, a new goal, and a launching pad for excitement and fulfillment in life.
Why I created Dream Circles?
1. I noticed how tough it could be to stay motivated towards my goals and gain new resources or connections.
2. I am a collaborator, connector, and community builder at heart, and don’t like how we are expected to achieve our goals by ourselves. I thought wouldn’t it be cool if I got goal-oriented people together to support one another.
3. I don’t like the “feel” of networking events that seem to be about getting something out of it for only you. I believe we have an innate need to give to others, connect with them, and feel a sense of community, and wanted a more humanistic way of bringing people together. After all, it is incredibly gratifying to support others and help them grow.
4. I like leadership conferences, but I believe we don’t need only “experts” to inspire or help us. Each of us has ideas, resources we’re aware of, and people we know, that we can share with someone else to help them with their goal.
5. I believe that everyone has gifts and talents they can use to influence the world around them for the better. I truly believe that supporting one another to fulfill our individual and collective potential is why we are all here.
What happens at a Dream Circle?
Essentially, participants bring ONE goal they are currently working on (whether a personal or professional goal), and leave feeling a stronger sense of community, empowered to achieve their goals, and become a part of the growing community of Potentialists, a community of people who hold you up and support you to make your dreams a reality.
After some icebreakers and community-building games, participants share the goal they are working on and put it on to a chart paper. This goal can range from a health goal, to starting a community project, to even achieving something from your bucket list. Anything goes, and we’ll support you to make it happen!
Using a handout I provide, participants write a big goal they have in their personal or professional life, the specific goal they want to work towards in the next 6 months in line with their big goal, where they are at, what they have done so far, and what they need help with. We then do a special activity to connect and share our goals, followed by a resource share where we go around to everyone else’s chart paper to offer ideas, resources, and connections to support others to achieve their goals. The evening ends with an iterative debrief process, and you leave with an accountability buddy and specific action steps you will take to move forward on your goal.
How to Attend one or Host one?
The best part of hosting Dream Circles is waking up the next morning with a heart full of inspiration from the amazing people that came and the goals they are working on, a body warm with the energy of receiving so many high fives and hugs, and a reassured spirit by the kindness and generosity of others.
To attend the next Dream Circle or know more about how to host one at your organization or next conference, visit www.thepotentialists.ca and sign up for our mailing list.
If you’re in Toronto on December 2nd, 2013, Sahil is hosting a public Dream Circle at the Centre For Social Innovation: https://csidreamcircle.eventbrite.ca/
About Sahil & the Potentialists:
Sahil is a Professional Speaker & Facilitator and has hosted over 20 Dream Circles at conferences and in the community since September 2012. Over 250 people have experienced a Dream Circle so far across Canada, and participants have said that they leave feeling a stronger sense of community, empowered to achieve their goals, and connected with new like-minded friends in the city. Sahil was honored to recently present a TEDx talk about this project at TEDxRichmondHill in August 2013.
The mission of The Potentialists is to help you discover your passion, develop skills to take action, and use the power of community to accelerate you towards your goals. We want to shift away from the dominant paradigm of working on goals in isolation to making personal development easier to navigate, experiential, and about connecting with others to achieve our goals.
For more information about Sahil and The Potentialists community, visit http://www.thepotentialists.ca/ and sign up for our mailing list.