Many people struggle with visualizing their future and wanted to know HOW to create that five year vision in the first place.
STEP ONE: THE BRAINSTORM
Creating your 5-year vision isn’t as easy as picking a goal out of thin air. (If you do it that way, you’ll realize that you’ll end up changing your goals very quickly and very often. Instead, take an entire day (or week) to ask what you want out of life and write all of your ideas down.
Feel free to create a list of as many ideas as you can think of BIG ideas – this is your future, your vision – NOTHING is impossible. Write everything down.
Ask yourself one important question:
What would I do if there were no rules?
Here are a couple more sample questions to get you started:
- What did you always want to do as a kid?
- What’s your life mission?
- What are your values?
- What impact do you want to have on the world and other’s lives?
- What do you want to be different than it is today?
STEP TWO: MAKE A DECISION: WHAT DO YOU WANT TO ACCOMPLISH RIGHT NOW?
You really can do anything you want, but the reality is no one can do EVERYTHING at the same time.
To give your dream the opportunity to be successful, you must make a firm decision to pursue that dream – and only that dream – until you have reached the goal.
Choose the goal you’re best positioned to accomplish right now.
Depending on where you are in life, there are some goals that you’re in a better position to accomplish than others. This doesn’t mean that you can’t eventually do them all, but you have to pick one to start with
Think about your specific situation…
- If you have young children, you may not want to pursue a goal that takes you away from home.
- If you have worked in a certain industry for five years, you have unique skills that will give you a competitive advantage in reaching a goal related to that industry.
- If you have extra time on your hands, maybe you could spend that time creating a side hustle.
This doesn’t mean that you have to throw your other dreams away. It simply means to grab the low hanging fruit, crush it, and then get started on your next goal. Being multi-passionate is a beautiful thing, but pursuing six goals at the same time means that each of your goals only get’s one-sixth of your focus. It’s hard to be really successful only using one-sixth of your effort.
STEP THREE: OUTLINE
All goals (if they’re big enough) will require you to step out of your shell a bit and do something new.
You may have to learn new things or re-train your brain to think a different way. (Don’t worry, it sounds scary, but it’s not. We all evolve everyday – this just means your evolution to your next move will be intentional.)
The next step in figuring out your vision, is outlining what it will take to get there.
Through creating an outline, you are doing several things. First, you’re researching what it will take in order to reach your goal. Second, you’re gaining an understanding of the distance between where you are and where you want to be. Third, you are breaking down your big hairy audacious goal into smaller bite-sized goals that are easier to accomplish.
To get started on your outline, ask yourself these questions:
- What skills will I need to accomplish this goal?
- What classes do I need to take?
- What relationships will I need to build?
- Are there any experts out there who I can learn from?
- What will I have to do in order to accomplish this goal? (Don’t skimp on this one! Be very detailed about your action items. This will help you in the long run.)
STEP FOUR: CREATE THE BIG PICTURE
Most people think about their vision in terms of their professional life. Let’s be real, a rich life is full of happiness, adventure, deep connections with family and great friends – in addition to monetary and career success. So take some time to brainstorm on what you want out of the other areas of your life.
To get started, write one sentence about what you want to you want your life to look like in each of these areas:
- Hobbies and Creativity
- Personal Relationships
- Exploration and Adventure
STEP FIVE: CREATE THE VISION
Now that you have an idea on the big goal that you want to accomplish as well as the secondary goals, let’s put it all into one, solid paragraph. (Pro tip: Try for 3-4 sentences – and it’s OK to revise it a bit.) Keep revising until you get it down to only the most important elements that you want to include in your life.
STEP SIX: BE OPEN TO CHANGE
When you start down the path of accomplishing your goals, you never really know where it will take you. Be open to new opportunities coming your way – as long as it is in line with your values and will still take you in the direction of your life’s mission. You’ll lose focus if you take every opportunity that comes your way, but there also may be some pretty cool ones that you shouldn’t pass up.
Creating a 5-year vision is not easy. It takes a commitment to trying to uncover what your really want out of life and thinking about how to get it – without neglecting the other important areas of your life.
At the end of this activity, take a second to imagine what your life would look like at the end of your journey. After having accomplished the goals that you went after, ask yourself one question: “Am I happy?” If you’ve answered “YES” then you did it right. If not, try again until you’re happy with your vision.
This Content has originally written by Thrive Lounge Team and published on August 31, 2017. No Copyright/IPR breach is intended.