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Dream vs. Purpose

The Difference Between a Dream and a Purpose

September 19, 20234 min read

What’s the difference between a dream and a purpose? A dream is your vision of your future. A purpose is a specific mission that / helps make your dream real. 

Dream - Your long-term vision of your future.
Purpose - Your current specific mission that helps make your dream real.

Here’s another way of saying the same thing: A dream is a future state that you see and feel when you close your eyes. A purpose is that tangible who/what/where that describes what you’re doing with the next few years of your life. 

My Dream & Purpose

What’s an example from my own life? Well, here’s my dream and my purpose.

My Dream: I want to live in Nosara, Costa Rica in paradise in a modern village with my family and friends where our children can roam free and be mentored and guided by the other residents – and to have enough prosperity that we can have everything we truly desire. I want to demonstrate that a new way of family living based on community, play, presence, and mutual support is possible.

My Purpose: Create the world’s most impactful community for men - helping one million men uplevel their life.

The Alignment Between My Current Purpose & Long-Term Dream

I’m a community builder. If we succeed in building The Brotherhood into a community of one million epic men who support each other, finding 300 great men who want to live together with their families in a beautiful ecovillage in Costa Rica suddenly becomes a very doable task!

In fact, it’s the deeper dharma of The Brotherhood co-creator Joe McVeen and his wife Kelly Krezek to build Abundancia, a 200-hectare regenerative modern eco-village here in Nosara, Costa Rica. 

We plan to help them as well as our good friend Gunnar Lovelace who’s building Luna Sol as well our good friend Matt Richards who’s building Tierra Amor — all within Nosara.

We can contribute to the collective of people working on making our broader dream real by doing what we’re good at (our area of specialization and expertise) and then referring great people into the communities.

My dream (vision) is to raise my kids in a new way and help co-create and popularize a new way of modern living that is integrated with presence, nature, and community. My current purpose (mission) utilizes what I’m really good at (my gift), to community organize epic men together and help them uplevel into better versions of themselves. The current mission supports the long term vision.

My dream has been the same since 2016 -- and my purpose has been more-or-less the same since 2013. The only difference is that in 2023 I decided to focus my work on men as that was the group of people I understood best from personal experience. 

Originally I thought I’d achieve my purpose of helping one million people design lives they love through putting on in-person events with Hive. This dream has continued with The Brotherhood -- of course now focusing on helping men create strong lives, bodies, families, communities, and companies through mutual support. 

Eventually, we’ll find the right female partner to help us build The Sisterhood as well -- and go back to helping more than just men.

Sometimes I’ve adjusted my purpose (my current short-term mission) out of necessity, like during and after Covid when our Hive events took a big hit. For two years I did marketing consulting and CEO coaching to provide income to our family while I figured out how to get back to my true path of building a company that would help people create strong lives. 

But even in those two years when we had to put our Hive events on hold, Morgan and I continued to work on our longer-term dream of building a community that creates a new way of living -- by helping community organize with the founding team at Nuanu, a large new living community in Bali just north of Canggu that is billed as a “home for visionaries, leaders, creators, and makers.”

How did I end up building The Brotherhood men’s community and The Men’s Course? Well the simple answer is that I spent a year writing the Magic Year book and then while I was turning it into a course realized that the course itself would be so much more powerful and effective if it were written just for men -- since men were the group of people I understood best. 

So your long-term dream may stay relatively consistent over time -- but be flexible on how you make this dream real. Your purpose (your current short-term mission that is in alignment with your long-term dream) may evolve multiple times within the same year!

I want to know, what is your dream for the next phase of your life? What is your long-term vision of your future? What does your soul truly yearn for? Even if you no longer believe it’s possible, I want to know your real dream. Share below in the comments.

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Ryan Allis

Ryan Allis is the Founder of The Brotherhood, a mastermind community for men on the path of personal growth.

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