Struggling to visualise your future? Read this

With September now over, we are well and truly immersed in the season of spring. With the scent of flowers in the air and the days growing longer, it seems like the perfect time to work on the projects we may have abandoned over winter.

This season of growth is a good time to reflect on the areas of your life you want to work on, whether it’s your family, your physical and mental health or your professional life, and deciding what you would like to metaphorically “clean up” in these areas.

I have attended a lot of seminars and workshops over the years and when the topic of goal setting comes up, the one  method I hear the most frequently is the power of visualisation.

This involves imagining where you want to be in five, ten or even 20 years down the track and devising steps on how you might get there.

Personally, I found this exercise extremely difficult and was left feeling stupid and inadequate at the fact that I just couldn’t picture what I wanted my future to look like.

This exercise, which works well for so many people, ended up working against me and made me feel as though my goals were worthless: if I couldn’t even picture how I wanted my future to look, how could I possibly hope to achieve my goals?

The thing is, I have done a lot in my life and have successfully reached many of the goals I have set for myself, despite not being able to come up with a five-year vision.

This got me thinking, how have I managed to achieve these goals without knowing where I wanted to be in the future?

Thinking back, I managed to pinpoint the three incredibly simple methods I used to help me consistently and effectively achieve my goals:

1: Make a decision:

The first thing I did was to just make a decision!

There isn’t anything wrong with weighing up different options in your head, but if you spend too long flipping between choices you waste time and run the risk of not making a decision at all.

Although it can be difficult, making a decision is the first step towards progress

As a result, your progress stagnates and you remain where you are.

Making progress is as easy as deciding which direction you want to take and then giving it your all and going for it.

This may feel daunting but it doesn’t have to be. Start small. Take one step at a time, making decisions that are going to keep moving forward and pretty soon you can look back and see how far you’ve come.

As long as you keep making decisions that are true to you so that you’re achieving the things that you want to achieve.

Remember, all great journeys start with a single step: making that first, sometimes scary, decision to move.

 

2: Give it a go:

Now that you’ve made your decision, it’s time to expand your horizons.

There are many ways to achieve a goal and what works for one person won’t work for another.

This is why it’s important to give everything a try and find what is going to be the best, most effective path towards success.

Brainstorm all the ways you might achieve your goals and give them a try

It might be scary to try something new or different and that’s OK. Be open to giving things a go and see where it may lead you. At the very least, you may learn that something just isn’t right for you but at least that’s something you can tick off your list.

As long as you keep making decisions that are true to you so that you’re achieving the things that you want to achieve.

 

 

 

3: Set short term goals:

If you’re like me and also find imagining where you want to be in the long term difficult, try setting short term goals  instead.

You might like to think of short-term goals as being similar to booking a holiday: you start with researching where you would like to go, then book the flights, accommodation, attractions and currency conversions, not to mention packing and getting yourself to the airport!

You need to reach certain goals to get there and all these little steps result in a beautiful holiday and as you sit on the beach sipping a margarita you can look back on how far you’ve come: and it all started with a single step!

Personal and professional goals are no different. Both involve lots of little steps to get you on your way.

It is important to set short term goals as the more you achieve the more confidence you will gain to keep you moving towards your dream.

Remember to celebrate every victory, no matter how small

By making decisions to move forward, expanding your horizons and setting short term goals, there is no reason why you can’t achieve great things.

As long as you are setting goals that are meaningful to you personally and don’t hurt anyone in the process, you can’t go wrong.

 

 

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