I chanced upon this article today: Why Girl Scouts Become Entrepreneurs, and I loved this point: “They’re encouraged to dream big“.

A tiny background about Girl Guiding in Singapore. Every individual has to have an extra-curricular activity/club apart from being studious in elementary/high school. I was first attracted to the movement as a Brownie when I saw the cute uniforms they got to wear. In high school, after an intense interview with a room filled with over ten people grilling me on my Brownie journey and why I wanted to be a Guide, I was given the green light to join the movement. And yes, that was my first interview of my life.

So why do we dream big? I remember the nights that were spent planning for camp; the illustrious and elaborate plans we had for each meeting; the weird food that we wanted to cook during outdoor cooking (I made ash cakes that were black on the outside, and the taste and texture of the insides were questionable); and the number of boxes of cookies that each Guide had to sell every year. Thinking back, we were always trying to achieve goals that were beyond us at times but we never gave up. We pushed hard for it and gave it our best shot while praying for a miracle to happen. Sometimes we tasted success, other times we failed. But the one most important thing that our founder, Lord Baden-Powell, taught us: Be Prepared (which is also the motto of Girl Guides Singapore). Be prepared for anything — always — because life does not always pan out the way we expect it to.

One of the biggest dreams of a Singaporean Girl Guide would be to attain the President’s Guide Award (PGA) — the most prestigious Guiding award that is presented to the deserving Guide by the President of Singapore. That was my dream, but I never reached it. After completing all the requirements for PGA, my Guider told me blankly in the face, “I’m sorry but I can’t put my pen down to sign this application. You are not ready.” I was stunned, bewildered and extremely disappointed. My dreams were crushed before I had a chance at it. At that moment, I could only recall the days of hard work I had put in to attain the three toughest proficiency badges of the Singapore Girl Guides: Pioneer, Homemaker, Emergency Helper and the Gold award.

And like always, we hope for miracles to happen. The next day, another Guider of mine came into my class and told us to “Never stop dreaming because it is only dreams that will carry you far”. In a previous post, I thanked this Guider for passing on this quote. And now, I thank her again.

Girl greatness always starts with dreaming big. We will always be faced with failures and successes in life, and those are the things that make life exciting. If we aspire to create an impact in the world, we have to understand that life is not a smooth ride. There are bumps on the road that we would have to endure to get to our final goal.

And from a good friend of mine, Dream big, Start small. And that is what girl greatness is to me.