Vision vs. Dream vs. Goal

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Difference between Vision, Dream and Goal

Be it vision, dream or goal, they are not confined by any specific definition. Vision can be referred to a shared look of a team, community or even a nation at a promising and hopeful future. Vision is not dependent upon the current situation. Rather, it is a set of objectives to be achieved. Dreams pass through mind when a person is asleep. It can contain images, unexpressed emotions, thoughts and sounds.  Goal is more specific compared to the above two. It is the projected objective that a person, group of persons or a nation wants to achieve with in a specific time frame.


Strategic planning is the key behind creation of Vision statement. Positive thoughts and inspiration are the pillars of successful implementation of the vision statement. Present business conditions may be antagonistic, but business leaders can draw attention to their mission statement for vision depending upon popular belief and confidence. Even if the present situation is favorable, you need to visualize the long term sustainability. Breaking the boundaries of traditional thinking will enable you to materialize the vision statement.

Dreams are the outcome of declarative memory. There are several theories and hypothesis related to creation of dream. They are continual-activation theory, excitations of long-term memory and psychosomatic theory. Planning and current situation are crucial while a team is deciding its goals. Goals can be of short term or long term. Goal statement needs to be specific measurable, targeted and time bound. While preparing the goal statement, you need to have clear-cut idea regarding available resources. 


Vision is imperative when a team is bounded by short-term tasks and results. It liberates the team from frustration of short term failures and rejuvenates team members to work towards a better future. Be it an organization, nation or a movement, vision is one of the strongest binding forces. Most of the time, dreams are the reflection of our unsatisfied desires and wishes. It comprises a wide range of emotions including joy, laughter, pain and fear. Dreaming pattern helps in detection of several medicinal disorders. For example, absence of pure black and white images in dream is a prime symptom of synesthesia. Through goal setting, people strive to achieve something in future they like and wish to do.

In Leadership

Visions, dreams and goals have helped a lot in transformation of global civilization. Vision of Martin Luther helped in creation of a United States where nobody is discriminated on the basis of skin color. Goals related to eradication of infectious diseases have made several parts of the world free from polio, chickenpox and small pox. Dreams of several leaders have helped in shaping their respective nations.

Similarities and Differences

  • Be it a dream, vision or goal, the road map is never as smooth as a bed of roses.
  • Both goal and vision demands consistent efforts, patience and transformation of short term profits to sustainable ones.
  • On the other hand, the same effort is needed to convert achievable dreams into reality.
  • Dreams, goals and visions add definite purpose to group efforts. They help in streamlining collective efforts in a particular direction. Capitalizing your strength and stressing more importance on mending weaknesses can help in materializing dreams, visions and goals.

comments 1 Comments

  • oluwatosin . 3+ yrs. ago

this is powerful.

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