This also happened with Cortes and the Spanish conquest of the Aztecs..
I think there are certain things to consider. After a lot of back and forth, I believe it is better to view your situation in specific as opposed to abstract terms. I don't think there is a right or wrong answer per se.
I will consider "ships" as backup plans/side projects/additional revenue streams. Here is what you need to think about:
1. Financial situation:
- How much savings do you have?
- What are your monthly costs?
- How much revenue are your ships bringing in?
- How much investment (time and money) does your dream project require?
- What amount of time do you spend on your ships?
- How much time do you have for your passion project?
- Are you able to do your passion project first or do you have to work on it after the obligations of your ships are fulfilled?
- Do your ships cause you any negative energy? I wouldn't underestimate this. Your dream project should be full of positive energy, but if you arrive in a sub-optimal state, it can limit your effectiveness.
Personal note: My two biggest challenges are that I have one project pays well but leaves me with a lot of negative energy. And the other: Some days I have to knockout a bunch of client work. Even if it only takes 3 hours, I feel a bit drained arriving at my passion/dream project..
The hardest thing to measure is how much drive you lose (if any) by not burning the ships. If the ships prevent you from putting in your all, and only giving 50%, then you should probably burn them, right?
One intermediate step that you can make before burning is to stop mentioning the ships at all. I only talk about my dream project when asked "What do you do?". If you haven't done that already, that is the one absolute recommendation I can make.
A good friend of mine is now a very successful magician. Before he went full-time on magic, he would always mention the various projects he was doing (bar promotions, web consulting, magic) but he noticed the lack of resonance with others. When he started to say he was a magician, the ships burned down shortly after.
-Someone who has not burned the ships but has a can of gas on hand .. and is closer than ever to lighting the match.