All of life's journeys begin with the phrase, "I want."
Think about your career and the times when you said "I want." Maybe you said "I want" go to college-and then enrolled in school and completed your degree. Maybe you said "I want" to work for a large or a small company-and you are working there now. Maybe you said "I want" to lead teams-and that's one of your current responsibilities. "I want" is a very powerful phrase. Without it, it's hard to go very far.
Imagine going on a trip without selecting a destination beforehand. What would you pack? How would you get there? Where would you stay? Your trip probably would not end up being much fun.
It's the same with your career. Not being able to visualize your desired result leads to results not happening. Goals are reached when you decide what you want, and then take action to get it. Without an end in mind, you will wander aimlessly; and as long as you are aimless, you will be wasting time. You will feel lost. You will be like a stray leaf, going wherever the wind takes you.
What's a Vision?
My definition of a vision is a visualization or a picture of where you see yourself in the future. Your picture can be one of where you want to be in a day, a week, a month, a year, or even farther into the future. The visualization of your goal is what compels you to move forward. A vision is a snapshot of what you want your career and life to look like in the future. This snapshot gives your journey a clear and reachable destination and provides focus.
All goals are reached in the mind first. You see yourself both achieving that goal and experiencing the satisfaction it will bring you once you are there. This picture is what will help you to persevere during times of doubt. Your picture of success will give you purpose, power, and excitement. Your picture will give you a reason to get out of bed every day.
How do you create a Vision?
Close your eyes. Let your imagination take over. Get in touch with what you really want and what is important to you. Ask yourself meaningful questions. Let the answers come to you.
What Questions will help get you to a Vision quickly?
Here are some questions you can ask yourself:
- If it was possible, what would be different in my career?
- What type of job would I have?
- What would I be responsible for?
- What type of boss/co-workers/team would I have?
- What kind of hours would I work?
- What type of company would I work for?
- What sort of culture would the company have?
- What city would I live in?
- How much money would I make?
- How would I handle stress, my workload, and deadlines?
Once you have thought about these questions, it is time to get your answers down on paper. There are no right or wrong answers to these questions. The answers are what is true for you-not what someone else wants for you, but what is truly in your heart. Listen to yourself, and your answers will be the perfect ones for you.
Once you have your vision, then it's time to make it real.