“Tell them about the dream”

In 1963, Dr. King in front of a quarter of a million people said the following:

I say to you today, my friends, so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.

I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal.’

I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.

I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.

I have a dream today.

I have a dream that one day, down in Alabama, with its vicious racists, with its governor having his lips dripping with the words of interposition and nullification; one day right there in Alabama, little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers.

I have a dream today.

“I Have a Dream” has been recognized as one of the most important and iconic speeches in history.

Shockingly, the most quoted and famous passage above wasn’t part of the original text. Dr. King ad-libbed after Mahalia Jackson shouted from behind, “Tell them about the dream!”

That takes guts to improvise in front of that many people. The more important take away though is this: When we speak from the heart, tell a story about our shared vision of the world that does not yet exist; we can enable the impossible.

Stories are what change people’s minds. Tell them, the people you seek to change, tell them about the dream!

Because the world needs you to change things as they are to enable what is to come.