I love this exercise. I love it because it gives me the opportunity to get my clients to tap into their creativity, to open their minds, to do something different. Some might argue that it allows the left brain and the right brain to interact … though a recent study published seems to suggest that the split between the left brain and right brain way of thinking is a myth (from The Guardian). Clients love this exercise too because they get the chance to do something that some of them haven’t done since they were a child.
It is the New Year, and for many of us, that means thinking about New Year Resolutions. And we all know how long New Year Resolutions last!
So instead, let’s create a vision of where we want to be in 3 or 6 months’ time. First I want you to come up with some goals. Goals needs to be stated in a positive and personal way. So rather than “I want to get fit”, rephrase as a goal that you can measure so that you know when you have achieved it. For example: “I will run a 5k without stopping by the end of April 2014”. Check out my earlier blog for ideas on how to think and be positive. No more than four goals – and two may be enough for you.
Now find some coloured pens and pencils or crayons, and two sheets of paper – A4 is great, A5 works too. On the first piece of paper, I want you to draw a picture that represents your most important goal. The goal that is the most important to you; the one that you really want to achieve; the one that you personally will gain the most from. Think forward to 3 months or 6 months – when you have achieved that goal. What do you see? hear? feel? think? What are others saying? No words, no writing. A picture. Make it visual. Take your time. Use colour. Maybe paint if you don’t have pens or crayons. Add as much detail as you want. You don’t need to be an artist – this is a representation, your representation of your goal.
Then I want you to draw a picture that represents where you are now in relation to that goal. Again, no words, no writing, just a picture.
Now you have two pictures, put them both on the floor with space (1-2 metres) between. OK you might feel a bit silly doing this in the office so maybe choose a quiet few moments at home. I want you to stand at the first picture which represents where you are now. Think about your goal – look at the second picture on the floor in front of you and ask yourself “what is the first step that I need to take?” Say it out loud and as you do so, take a step towards your goal. Now ask yourself “what’s the next step that I need to take?” Again, say it out loud and take a step towards that goal. Keep going with the steps, saying out loud what it is that you need to do to reach your goal. And when you have reached your goal, the representation of your goal, congratulate yourself on a fantastic achievement.
Once you have done this, put these pictures up somewhere you can see them every day: maybe on the fridge, on your desk, on a wall.
Please do comment and share your goals. A goal shared with others will be achieved more quickly. That’s how coaching works too.
Happy New Year to you.
p.s. Did you work out what my picture represents? That’s me crossing the finish line at the London Marathon in April. For the Fetchies reading, yes that’s Fetchpoint with the red and yellow balloons