Your Vision, Your North Star (+ Free journaling exercise)
Imagine this: You want to drive to Paris. And instead of looking at the map, you just start driving random roads that look fun, or you decide to follow the car in front of you, or you just trust your friend who doesn’t have any sense of direction to guide you. Eventually, you might settle for Berlin, because it’s where you ended up. And although Berlin is great, you’re disappointed you never made it to Paris.
Sounds like a stupid way to try to get to Paris, right?
Still, this is how many people live their lives.
They want to go to Paris (get the dream job, travel the world, became famous), but yet they start driving without a clear road map, without an end in mind. They’re just wandering around some random roads, choosing short-term fun over progress, following other people’s tracks, and taking advice from people with no sense of direction.
I know it’s easy to get caught up in life and short-term goals… It just happens and before you know it, you’re in Berlin instead of Paris.
This is what happens when you are not clear about where you want to go: your destination, your vision.
All goal setting starts with getting clear on your big vision for your life, your work, your relationships… all elements that matter.
In this blog I am going to help you create a clear vision, so you can stop running around in circles and actually start moving towards your biggest dreams.
If you already have a vision this blog is great to revisit, if you don’t, please make sure you read this blog before you start with your goals.
What is a vision?
Your Vision = Your ideal version of the future.
Many of my clients look a little puzzled when I ask them about their ‘vision’. They believe it means they need to have some sort of Hollywood movie in their head of exactly what their life is going to look like.
And although some very driven and visual people might have a picture like that in their head… Most of us don’t.
What I mean when I say ‘vision’, is a gist of what you want in the long term in all areas of your life. It can be a picture, but most importantly, it should be about the feeling you want to have.
– Where do you want to live? How does it feel?
– What kind of work do you want to do? Or what feeling do you want to get from doing your work?
– What’s important to you? What do you value?
– What projects would you like to do?
You can go as specific as you like, and stay general where you don’t know the details yet.
As a multipotential human being, I am sure you want to succeed in all areas of your life, not just professionally. So you are going to need a vision for all parts of your life that matter to you.
Decide on your big life themes
I have a 7-fold vision: one for every important area of my life. You can work with one big vision, but dividing it into specific categories can help you structure your thoughts and make it easier to identify what you want.
You can use any life themes or areas you like, but I personally prefer to use the following 7:
- Play & Creativity
- Personal Growth
Other ways to identify your categories or life themes is to think about the different roles you play in your life (daughter, father, friend, colleague..), or you can use more specific elements that are a priority in your life (Photography, Yoga, Doctor).
Create a vision in each category
Ideally, you want to write down a few sentences answering the following questions:
- What is important to you in this area of life?
- What do you want your life in this area to look like?
- What are your biggest dreams in this area? (if you have trouble dreaming big try this thought experiment: if there were no limitations…. if I could choose… if I had a magic wand… what would I wish for? )
There are many ways to come up with, or “create” your vision. Here are my personal favourites:
- Meditate on it
- Visualize it
- Journal about it
- Create a vision board
- A combination of these methods
I created a free journaling exercise to help you write up your dream life in all areas of your life that matter to you. You can download it for free here.
Download your FREE journaling exercise
Your Vision, Your North Star
Your vision will be the North star for everything you do. You’ll always have a reference point to see how you’re doing. It’s the basis for your habits, your daily activities, your projects, and your goals.
I’ll give an example of how this works in my own life:
- A sentence from my vision on health: I have an amazing, tanned, lean, and strong body from all the yoga and surfing I am doing.
- A goal related to this vision: Catch my first 2-meter wave.
- A habit that helps support this vision: A daily yoga asana practice.
- A project that helps me achieve this goal: Going on a 1-week surf holiday in Portugal.
- A task that helps me complete this project: Book my flight
Imagine your days are filled with tasks and habits that all support your bigger vision… Can you see how you get closer to those big dreams, 1 tiny step at a time?