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The Cheshire Cat from Alice in Wonderland has a great lesson for us all when it comes to Vision as shown in this dialogue between The Cat and Alice:

 Alice: `Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?’

Cheshire Cat: `That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,’ said the Cat.

Alice: `I don’t much care where–‘ said Alice.

Cheshire Cat: `Then it doesn’t matter which way you go,’ said the Cat.

Many people I work with are seeking to define their future so they can take their Next Steps. They are looking for a way to create the roadmap for their life.  Often this comes about because of something that happens at work or with their family, or because they ask themselves the question, “What’s Next?”.
When I work with clients on this we usually explore the following:

  • Talents and Strengths
  • Values
  • Resonant Purpose
  • Vision

Today we’re going to talk about the vision we want for ourselves – that bold, invigorating, energizing place that we dream for ourselves.   It will be different for each of us.  When we see ourselves there we feel a tingling, we’ve done what we were meant to do, we’re having the impact we want to have, we are fulfilling our purpose and honoring our values.  This is a great place.

What is your vision for yourself?  Pause this and write it down…

I am sure this was hard.  Not because you couldn’t think of how you see your future self, but rather because there are so many parts of our life to consider:  Career, Finances, Family, Partner/Spouse/Romance, Spirituality, Fun, Health, etc…  To help think through these various aspects, I like to merge a few things — the Wheel of Life, Visualization, Future-Back Planning, Next Step Visioning.

The Wheel of Life is a tool many coaches use to help our clients think about various aspects of their life — after all we are one person and we bring all of these with us wherever we go. You can find an example here.

How can we use this to help us with our Vision?  (you can download the template below and follow along)

Let’s take one dimension to start —  Career.  On a scale of 1 to 10 how satisfied are you with your career/job?   What is it that makes you feel it’s that number?  How would you embody that feeling?  Now imagine you are at a 10 in your career!!  How do you feel at a 10?  How would you embody the 10?  Staying in that place of 10, what is different in your career at a 10 than at your current number?  What else?  Describe your 10!  What else?  What are you doing that is different?  How are you being that is different?  How are you interacting with others differently?  What else?  What impact are you having on others, your company, the world?  What is important in your career at 10?  What else?  What do you want to do to move to your 10?  What are some things you can do?  What else?

Now write down the description of your Career @ 10, get detailed.  What was different from now? How were you working with others differently, What were you doing?  How were you being?  What else?  Add as much detail as you want.  This is a vision for your career dimension.  Copy this to the Vision template.

Next we apply the same process for each of the Wheel of Life dimensions.  This can take some time so no need to rush — it is a Vision of your future life we are elaborating — pretty important.

Once you do this for a few of the dimensions that are important for you, you might begin seeing some unifying themes (usually aligned with Values or a Purpose).  If not, no problem.  You have a Resonant Vision.  Often my clients will craft a vision statement they can read to keep themselves on point with their vision.  We then work to do Future-Back Planning to create a MAP (Massive Action Plan) to get there.