Dream Year – Ben Arment [Book Summary]

by Nick

Many people are unhappy with their work. They would like to change their life, but how to do it? The book “Year of Dreams” helps to give your dreams certainty and gives practical advice related to the organization of your own business.

Ben Arment is an entrepreneur, consultant, manager of the Year of Dreams organization, which provides consultations, trainings and helps people transform their lives.

This book is available as:

AudiobookeBook | Print

Formulate Your Dream and Lay a Clear Route to It

Most working Americans hate their jobs.

Every day they sit in offices or stand behind the counters, waiting for the end of the working day, they experience growing irritation and fatigue. They are not satisfied with their life but do not know how to change it for the better. The problem is that they do not do what the soul lies to, but perform the functions prescribed by someone else.

Perhaps you feel like that?

These notes will show you how to gain determination and change activities, realize your own dreams. You will learn how to do this large and complex business by dividing it into small steps that will lead you to where you really want to be. You can do it. Begin this year’s journey to your dream.

You will also learn:

  • why it is good – that you are disappointed in your current job;
  • how to meet dozens of world leaders;
  • What do shots in target and start of your business have in common?

Use the Energy of Frustration as Fuel to Achieve Your Dream

You don’t like your job?

If so, you are not alone: ​​studies have shown that a whopping 66 percent of Americans work out of necessity, without any job satisfaction.


Many people are unhappy that they are not working for themselves, but for the owner; Do not fulfill their dream, but someone else’s. Your work is probably not so unbearable; the employer usually tries to organize the business competently so that employees do not seek to quit. And yet you are disappointed – that means you have your own dream.

Feeling irritation, disappointment can play a positive role.

Firstly, it helps to understand and formulate the problems facing you. When you complain to a friend about your work, clearly formulate a list of questions that need to be addressed.

Disappointment can push you to action to improve the situation. It is a source of energy that can fuel your efforts.

The negative emotions that you are experiencing now will help you to adhere to the path that you choose and overcome doubts that arise.

Suppose you decide to stop working with computers and get a medical education. Undoubtedly, at some point, you ask yourself:

  • “Was this the right step?
  • Should I have quit my programming career?”

It’s unavoidable. When this happens, you may recall the disappointment you felt at your old job, it will strengthen your determination and help you keep to your chosen path.

But what changes will be right for you?

You need to overcome inspired stereotypes, be inspired by your dream and your ideas, and build reality in harmony with them.

Fear should not interfere with your dream, use it to motivate

If so many Americans hate their job, why don’t they quit and start their own business?

The main reason is the fear of failure.

If you are afraid of failure, then the thought of your business can be scary. Permanent work, where your responsibilities and rights are clearly defined, may seem attractive compared to the uncertainty that awaits on its own path.

But what are you afraid of? What is the worst that can happen? If the business burns out, your standard of living will drop: you will have to save on things such as cable TV and even on food for some time. But you can overcome this temporary setback.

What you should really be afraid of and avoid at all costs is a waste of your life. If you give up your dream because of the risk of failure, you are guaranteed to receive dissatisfaction and aimless existence.

Let the Fear of Pointlessly Running Out Time Be an Incentive to Start Your Own Business.

Another remedy against the fear of failure is an experience. The first steps in a new business are related to stress, but soon you will adapt to a new position.

In one of the security companies in Los Angeles, bodyguards are trained to remain calm and collected during the shooting. This can be achieved only by gaining experience, and therefore instructors arrange shooting training. Beginners are initially lost and panicked, but then they adapt to a risky situation and get used to acting rationally and rationally, performing their duties. You too quickly acclimatize to the risk associated with achieving a dream.

Search for Your Dream at the Intersection of Hobbies and Abilities

You are ready to change activities and move towards your dream. But maybe you can’t understand what is your calling?

Remember your childhood. Then you were freer in choosing activities.

In adults, desires and choices are largely dictated by the expectations of society. For example, in our time, the universal goal is to become rich, famous and successful. But what if these goals have nothing to do with your dream?

As a child, you probably did not care about these issues; you just did what you wanted. If you dreamed of becoming an astronaut, you probably were not worried about salary and insurance issues; you just dreamed of joining NASA. You were interested in books about the Universe, rocket models and interplanetary space bases.

Based on your childhood dreams, you can find inspiration for your activities in adulthood.

Having formulated your dream, you need to adjust it so that the activity matches your abilities. Maybe your career has limitations because there is no corresponding education, but this does not mean that you should abandon it at all.

You should be so enthusiastic about the business that you are ready to do it with pleasure without any payment. For example, you like music. This means that you enjoy spending time listening to music CDs, going to concerts and reading interviews with your favorite artists. Moreover, you pay for the pleasure of doing it!

You can love music, but not have the ability to become a musician or singer. But perhaps you will be able to become a director, organizer of concerts. This is an example of how to find a field of activity, your passion, and your abilities are combined.

It requires an original business idea aimed at solving a certain problem

Once You Have Formulated Your Dream, You Need to Find a Way to Turn It Into a Business.

The first step is to come up with a business idea that allows you to do what you love and at the same time solve the problem that people face. This is the only way to ensure that your favorite business provides a livelihood.

An example of a successful business idea is the project of Chuck Templeton, who created the OpenTable system for booking restaurant services. Initially, this idea did not arouse interest among successful restaurant owners: they were satisfied that every evening the restaurant halls were filled with visitors, and they did not see any benefit in the preliminary booking of their services.

Templeton optimized OpenTable by adding a feature that allows restaurateurs to access customer information.

This solved the real problem: the restaurant staff is interested in knowing their customers. Demand for this new version of the service has skyrocketed, and more than 30,000 restaurants currently use OpenTable.

Another key criterion for your business is originality and successful positioning. It should be non-traditional, go beyond the usual boundaries of the industry. It is important to find your niche, focus on a specific audience, declare your differences from accepted standards.

Successful positioning is important for a beginner, since working in a traditional way puts you in direct competition with successful firms with an experience that have formed a circle of regular customers

Doing What Everyone Else Does is a Losing Path for a Beginner.

Netflix demonstrated an example of the right strategy in the 1990s.

They found their niche in the video rental industry. Instead of creating retail stores, which was very fashionable at the time, they offered to rent videos on the website of the online store. DVDs were sent and returned by mail. They also introduced a monthly subscription instead of paying for each cassette they rented.


This approach turned out to be very successful, but with the development of technology, working methods also changed. Netflix was the first to start delivering video files directly over the Internet.

Today the company is a major player in the video market.

Your Dream Must Be Financially Viable

After you come up with a business idea that allows you to earn money with your favorite business, do you need to take immediate action? You may want to start immediately, but wait: at this stage you need to remain calm and soberly assess your financial capabilities.

First of all, your idea must be financially viable. It is payback that distinguishes the business from a hobby.

You and your customers should like your business, but this is not enough: the business must bring sufficient profit.

You have probably been to incredibly popular restaurants that offer delicious food at very low prices. Unfortunately, these enterprises go bankrupt sooner or later, as they simply are not profitable, the flow of customers is insufficient for payback at a low margin.

So, profit is important, and you need to take care of its increase. One way is to create multiple revenue streams: offering services or products that are related to your main idea. If you open a hairdressing salon, do not limit yourself only to haircuts; organize the sale of cosmetics and hair products, spa treatments. This will not only increase profits, but also make it more stable.

A decrease in one income stream is not so painful if there are several sources of income.

An important condition for business profitability is minimizing costs. The easiest way to increase profits is to reduce all costs that do not reduce the quality of service. You should not spend money on a large office or fantastic antique furniture just because you are happy to showcase your new venture.

If you are engaged in web design, then the office is not needed at all. You can get started without leaving your home. Cost-cutting tactics will give you the best chance of making a profit.

Make a Plan and Start Your Dream Job – Don’t Delay at the Start!

In any case, the first steps are the most difficult. And the path to the dream is no different from other paths. The beginning of active actions requires a lot of stress and does not bring immediate results.

It is tempting to return to dreams and planning and to postpone active work until later.

Maybe you think that now is not the right time to start active actions? But circumstances will never be absolutely favorable.

The creators of the popular game Angry Birds can not “boast” that they are always lucky. When they started their company in 2003, they did not have any great ideas for games. But they began to work, learned from their mistakes and developed many commercially unsuccessful games – 51 failures! But the fifty-second game, Angry Birds, has become the most popular mobile game.

Active work is much more productive and more important than the expectation of a “favorable location of the stars.”

Now Take a Step Back and Talk About Planning. You Must Create a Realistic Schedule to Follow the Intended Route.

In the schedule, you need to define tasks for every day. These tasks should be as specific and feasible as possible. For example, there is the laborious task of “dealing with taxes for this year.” Divide it into small specific cases: “Print a tax return form,” “Collect checks for March,” and so on. This will help to rationally organize activities and maintain momentum.

This form of schedule will allow you to tune your mind in a practical way, and this will remind you of normal activities at your previous job. There it was unacceptable to put things off and dream all day, you had tasks and target dates for their implementation. You also need to act when you work not for the owner, but for yourself.

Do not make your schedule too ambitious, otherwise, you will inevitably fall behind and lose heart.

Entrepreneurs Are Not Afraid to Ask What They Need.

If you decide to write a letter to the President of the United States requesting a meeting, do you think he would find a free minute for you? Probably not, right?

In fact, you will never know – yes or no, if you do not try to make an appointment.

After the 9/11 terrorist attacks, book author Bob Goff wanted to help his children understand what was happening, and so he asked them to come up with what they would say to an audience of world leaders.

One of his daughters insisted on writing letters and asking for a meeting, and Goff found several addresses for her. Surprisingly, she received 29 affirmative answers to her request, even from countries such as Israel and Switzerland.

You will never know that answer you can get if you do not ask a question.

This is especially important for entrepreneurs, as they must be bold in making decisions. Their income depends on what they can get from others. Entrepreneurs are negotiating now and again: they agree with suppliers on discounts, with a realtor – on assistance in finding a good trading platform, with a client – on an advance payment.

Most people making a request feel uncomfortable. An entrepreneur should be more determined.

Negotiations need to be conducted competently. Do not formulate your request as follows: “You can do this for me.” So it’s also not necessary: ​​“I want you to do this for me”, because such requests will be rejected, and you will feel awkward.

You should not act as a supplicant, but as a partner, offering to play a worthy role in your dream business.

That’s what director Christine Harle did. She wanted to get the right to film her favorite children’s book and successfully negotiated with the author. A significant role was played by what she emphasized – her film will help sell more books, benefiting the author.

Learn About Branding: Create an Image of Your Product, Focus on the Target Audience, Acquire Regular Customers

There are countless smartphones and tablets from different companies, but not one can compare with Apple. Products with this symbolism can be expensive and not too advanced, people still are delighted with the “apples” and “macs”.


Apple has managed to create an excellent brand, position its products as unique.

“All Food” is an American supermarket chain. People see shopping at the supermarket as a necessary routine. The leaders of the retail network decided to revive the business environment in the store. The company encouraged employees to communicate with customers in a friendly manner, and provided bonuses to those who often looked into the delicatessen department. Customers liked this personal touch.

If you want to succeed, think about how to make your company recognizable. Branding includes many elements: symbolism, external attributes, declared mission. All these are components of the image of the company. A successful image allows you to stand out, attract attention and acquire regular customers.

In addition to a successful brand, an important success factor is the expansion of the circle of loyal customers, fans who prefer your company and promote it among friends.

Without regular customers, you will have little chance of success, even if your business idea is brilliant. According to Kevin Kelly, the co-founder of Wired, at least 1,000 “true fans” are needed to start making a living from your business.

How can I create a loyal customer base?

A modern and popular method is the use of social networks, blogs on the Internet. As technology evolves, take advantage of new communication and feedback opportunities.

Writer Tim Schroeder asked 60 experts to write an opinion on the book on their blogs. The writer knows that each expert has his own audience because the statements of experts (often critical) ensured the growth of book sales. At the peak of demand, the book sold 1,200 copies a day for five days.

The Final Words

You can end your disappointing career and become an entrepreneur who embodies her own dreams. Formulate your goals, increase revenue streams and customer base. This is no easy task, but smart, realistic planning will help you.

Divide a large goal into small, easy-to-follow steps. When you have identified your dream, take the time to plan specific steps to realize it.

Break all the actions into small and very small tasks until you reach the level of specificity at which each task can be completed in one day.

This will protect you from overload. For example, do not set a goal of this type: “get the first million dollars of income.” Work, instead, over a list of potential customers, and email project for clients, sending out invitations, and other specific cases.

Why You Should Read “Dream Year”

  • To stop doing the job you don’t like.
  • To start your own business.
  • To learn how to articulate your dreams.

This book is available as:

AudiobookeBook | Print