It’s easy to set goals and design habits. What isn’t easy, is choosing them, enforcing them and actually reaping the results. So many people fail to get their goals even started, often that’s because they’ve only made them out of guilt, or because they think they have too.
We have so many things yelling at us, telling us how to live our lives, what weight we should be, what we should eat, how we should raise our children. It’s confusing to have to take it all in, process it and figure out which ideas we want to stick.
This blog post is the perfect place to start if you're wanting to clarify what you truly want, and outline exactly how you're going to get there.
Deep down, however, I believe that we all have a gut feeling of what we would like our lives to look like. Our ideal life. When we put all the bullshit aside, and focus on how we really want to feel, what we really want to achieve, that’s when you begin recognising where you want your life to lead. And only then, do you have the ability to make goals and design habits which will actually stick. Because you have a WHY behind them. You have that connection you want to draw between your current self and the self you wish to become.
Take it from me, I’m only 18 yet I know where I want to end up in 5 years. In fact, I know where I want to end up in 10! And it’s only because I know these things, that my future becomes a lot more exciting and inspiring. It’s only because I know these things that I understand the importance behind track my goals and actually sticking to them. Because each one in a stepping stone to a bigger one, ultimately leading me to how I was to feel in the future.
It may seem a little ‘airy’ but base your long term goals around how you want to feel. Then, you are able to recognise what someone who feels like this might do everyday to maintain this feeling. Perhaps they dedicate time to creativity or curiosity everyday. Perhaps they ensure that their space is always clean to that they are able to focus on this creativity. By delving into the life of your future self, you begin to get a most complete image of what you need to achieve to get there.
Think of it this way, when you're decorating your house, you often only place items in your room which brings a certain 'feeling' into the space. This may be through colours, shapes, patterns or furniture. It's through how you decorate and organise the space in which your perspective and contentment with the area changes. Through this perspective, we're able to understand how changing what we let into our life (much like changing what we let into our house) alters the feeling in which we have towards ourselves (or our homes). I guess that's why they say that a cluttered home = a cluttered mind.
The process of this is rather simple, however can have massive changes in your mindset - which ultimately is the deal breaker between you achieving or failing to achieve your goals.
With the printable attached, you’ll be able to work through and design the life of future you. Breaking down the environment and state that this person is in and how they have achieved everything they have. As a result, you’ll be able to begin making steps every single day to make this lifestyle a reality. You won’t be able to help the motivation you’ll gain in achieving your goals.
Take a notepad and write a paragraph about yourself 10 years in the future -
Ensure you cover the following points:
When reflecting upon this paragraph, you may begin to see patterns or images that are clear in your mind. Bring this to life by creating a mood board complete with images, quotes, words, or colours which completely describe the life of your future self. I have dedicated a small section of wall in my room to manifesting upon my future self and how my future self my feel. I gathered images and inspiration from magazines, pinterest, newspapers, and even stamps or colour samples from a hardware store.
Take the time to identify the gaps between you and your future self. This isn’t a negative space, rather it is the opportunity for you to grow and develop yourself. The easy way to begin this process is to create a ’Stop/Start List’. Dividing a page into two columns, on one side list things which your current self needs to stop in order to become more aligned with your future self. This may include anything from, eating dairy or gluten to stop allowing negative friends impact your life. On the other side, begin to determine things which you need to begin to bring you closer towards your future self.
Now for some goal writing. Look at yourself 10 years in the future, and in bullet pointed form write out your future vision. For example:
10 Year Vision
Now, each of these long term goals is the result of a lot of decisions, milestones and short term goals. Break these down into 5 year visions. For example:
5 Year Vision
Ask yourself, what do you need to achieve in one year to draw yourself closer towards achieving these 5 year goals? This is your one year vision. For example:
One Year Vision
You’re gradually breaking down your goals into more manageable, bitesize pieces. Might I add, all of these individual goals have equal importance. So just because you are aiming for something small like making more friends, ultimately it is a key stepping stone leading you towards how you want to feel in the future.
If you’re anything like me, you’ll want to break down goals for all the years in between. For example, I have goals for 3 years from now, and even more for 7 years from now. Because I like to be ultra-specific with where I’m heading. However, you’ll notice that even having the clarity to see where you want to end up at the end of 2019 is super comforting and inspiring. Especially when you are able to visually recognise how it’s leading you towards your 5 year goals, your 10 year vision and ultimately your future being. However if that in depth process is not your style, let’s begin making this one year vision a little more specific. What steps do you have to take to achieve your one year vision?
To establish a strong and healthy relationship you may want to ask yourself, are you with the right person currently? Do you need to end your current relationship? Do you need to begin following new passions and hobbies to find people with similar passions to you? Or do you just need to establish a date night every week to make sure you are still having that time with your partner? Do you need to stop bringing your cell phone to dinner to encourage the sharing of your day and hearing about their life?
Now, notice here, these are steps you need to take on an individual level to accomplish your goals. It would seem slightly inappropriate to ban cell phones from the table all together simply because it’s 2019 and you’re prioritising your relationship now. Be realistic, and understand that drastic changes are less likely to stick. Perhaps encourage each other to leave your phones at home when you go for a walk. Begin there and gradually progress.
Once you have broken down each element of your 1 year vision, it’s rather easy to see where you need to do a little more work. Often, this step simply hands you your goals - backed by the fact you have gradually unpacked your future self into simple ways to improve your current self.
Collate and organise these action steps into monthly goals (to monitor), weekly goals (to maintain) and daily habits (to fulfil). The result? Daily habits which create rewarding routines, weekly goals which are easy to track and achieve, and monthly goals to ensure that you are gradually achieving your one year vision.
This process doesn’t just secure your vision for 2019, but your vision and goals for every year between now and 2029. Scary right? But how good does it feel to have it all sorted? I find it amazing to wake up in the morning and know that I’m getting out of bed early this morning and going for a run not because I’m scared of what the scales tell me, but rather because I know that running today means I feel great tomorrow. It means I’m fitter next week and happier next month. I understand the progression of this and that each decision I make has a WHY. It’s a beautiful and comforting feeling.
Your first step now is to begin. Take the afternoon to figure out where you’re heading and before you know it you’ll be on your way!
I hope you enjoy this process and find it as fulfilling as I have. Give it a chance. Give yourself a chance, to achieving your fullest potential.
Hi there! Thanks for checking out the Live Lively blog. I am so excited to share my passion for productivity, personal growth and wellbeing!