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Crafting a Dream


This is one post in a series about Hero Round Table videos.

Jen Cooper is a teacher and a visual artist, but her HRT talk is about achieving goals. “Crafting a Dream” is the snazzy title.

Jen wants to know if you’ve ever had an idea stuck in your head that just wouldn’t go away. After traveling the world with her husband, Jared, the two of them settled in Denver but kept asking themselves how they might get back to Central America. Eight years later, they opened a volunteer school in Nicaragua.

How did they do it? Jen offers this Venn diagram as an organizational tool (Sphere of Influence, passion, attainable) First, ask yourself what you can control, then push farther than that. What can you influence? Those limits describe the first circle. What are your passions? Jen and Jared love art, education, language, culture, and Nicaragua – all contained within circle number two. The universe of what is attainable is finite, and it fits inside the third circle. Set your goals at the intersection of these three territories. For Jen and Jared, that goal took the shape of Craft for Community, which “facilitates meaningful trips for individuals and groups to experience village life in Nicaragua while making a lasting impact for change by interacting with community members in empowering ways.”

Jen reminds us that she’s not an expert in any of this. She’s just a person who took a risk and followed an idea. What idea is stuck in your head? What are you going to do about it?


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© 2016 by Matthew P. Winkler