With 2022 behind us and the lengthening of daylight each day, my positivity says things can only get better. Now is the time to think and dream about 2023. What would you like to intentionally create for yourself this year? By thinking about what you want to create in your life this year and how you want to BE as you do those things, it just might be the hope you need to get through these darker months.
Now there are people out there that say they don’t want to plan; they want to accept what comes along spontaneously. If they plan they think they’ll take the fun out of life or miss what comes along. Why not have both? Think what you want in your life and be open to the serendipity that comes along.
Just like a company has a vision and strategic plan, or at least successful companies, you as an individual would do well to have a vision and strategic plan for your life. This isn’t about making New Year’s resolutions, those don’t work. This is simply about thinking about what you want and being intentional about having more of that in your life.
The photo here is my business partner, Sue, and I doing our reflection, lessons learned and creation this year at a very nice spa hotel. That’s how much we are committed to this exercise, as we’ve done it every year for probably over a decade.
In last month’s article I suggested reflecting on 2022 which you can reread here The self-reflection was to capture the successes, achievements and celebrations and release the failures, disappointments and regrets. From those reflections of the past year, what are the lessons you’ve learned?
What matters to you?
What do you want more of in your life? Less of?
If you could have a do-over of something within your control this past year, what would you do differently?
Think baby steps, what are some qualities you’d want more in your daily life (humour, fun, depth, lightness, purpose, consciousness)?
Even if you don’t do the reflection exercise you can still do this next step…
Create Your Future
With everything you’ve learned from 2022 now create a captivating vision for 2023. Think about the following questions. As you think about 2023 also think about how you want to feel. What would excite you about the year? It’s not just what you want to achieve, it’s also about how you want to feel and be.
What do you want in the year ahead? Think of all aspects of your life – family, work, personal, financial, health, fun, spiritual, relationships, etc.
What are you tolerating that you’d like to change in the next year?
What would you add more regularly to your life for more enjoyment, fun or fulfilment?
What is something you’d do this year if you didn’t care what people thought of it/you?
If this year was a chapter in the book of your life, what would this next chapter be called/what would its title be?
Things I’ve been thinking of for this year are: more joy, laughter, singing, delivering a new leadership program with a colleague, gratitude and lightness.
Capturing Your Vision – Vision Board or Something Else?
Now that you’ve thought of the various aspects you’d like, you have an idea of the overall theme (from your chapter title) and some qualities or characteristics you’d like to experience more, it’s time to pull them all together.
There are a few options for how to do this however, first why do this? Because we know that by engaging the creative part of your brain there’s more chance of following through than just relying on willpower.
1. Make a vision board – this is the most popular suggestion although this doesn’t appeal to everyone. Find images (from the internet, canva, pintrest, magazines, draw) of the things you’ve just identified and put them together (on a poster, on-line). It’s essentially a collage, so you have a visual reminder of your aspirations for the year. This is what I chose to do this year, as there were pictures of me from the year that were ‘what I want more of’ this year so I’ve included them.
2. Write a list – so you can refer to it periodically through the year to plan your intentions into your schedule.
3. Pick some music that represents your theme and qualities – play it often. A friend of mine has chosen “I’m Coming Out” as her song, I’m still looking for mine. Any suggestions around fun, release or letting go would be very much appreciated.
4. Draw yourself a picture – this is what I’ve done for many years prior to 2023. I draw images and words for the coming year and at the end a central image usually emerges that I then photograph as my phone wallpaper.
There’s no right or wrong way to capture your visioning, do what appeals to you most or create your own idea and let me know what that is. Once captured, plan how you can work towards including those new aspects into your life, in small incremental steps.
2023 will pass (if you’re lucky; the alternative is sad and not pleasant) like every other year. To have an idea of how you want it to be better or different than 2022 requires visioning and then action. Take the time to dream, it doesn’t have to be long or all at one time. Then live the vision through reminders, action and inspiration. And enjoy whatever else comes along the way!
I’d love to hear about your theme, vision, images and ideas if you’d like to share them with me or how you felt trying this exercise.
Book a COMPLIMENTARY coaching session with me here for some guided visioning time – and some practical tips for how to achieve that vision. What would make you more effective and fulfilled at work and personally?