- Are you often blown off course by outside forces?
- Do you ever
feel discontented with what you're doing?
- Do you feel that, rather than
doing what is meaningful to you, you are ‘just getting by'?
- Do you feel you
can't get to where you want to be in life?
- Are you low because you don't
even know what you want?
If you answered ‘yes' to any of the above, the chances are that you are operating
without a workable vision for your life.
Whoever we are, life is inevitably going to present us with challenges. If we don't
know how best to respond to them, if we're unclear about our direction, about how
to mobilize our resources, about what is possible and desirable for us, then we're
going to experience a great deal more distress than we need to. At times like these,
a workable vision can (no kidding!) mean the difference between anguish and joy.
When things are going more smoothly, too, a workable vision enables us to
maximise our satisfaction, minimise stress and strain and move quickly towards
those goals that mean most to us.
So what is a ‘workable vision'? Well, we all have a vision whether we consciously
acknowledge the fact or not. It's how we're made. If we feel limited and blocked in
life that is a response to our vision. If we feel expansive, joyful and confident, that
too is a response to our vision.
Our vision has several components. It's made up of what we know about ourselves,
what our capabilities are, our strengths and talents, our dreams and deepest
desires. At another level, our vision contains the goals which are right for us as well
as the effective means to achieve them. Another level is our personal resources, our
belief in ourselves and the validity of our pursuits. Here, too, is inspiration. Many
would say and, personally I agree, that at the highest level, giving meaning to
everything else, is our spirituality, our core beliefs about the value and purpose of
The challenge for many of us is that our vision has more or less happened to us as a
result of our life experience. We may still hear the voices of our critics from early
years, the teachers who told us we weren't bright, parents who scolded or worried
too much, and these undermine our belief in ourselves. We may carry limiting
beliefs about what is possible for us after unfortunate encounters or traumatic
episodes. Some of us lose touch with our true calling because influential figures
disapproved of that kind of thing and now we don't understand why we feel so
unfulfilled. All this and more is nothing unusual. For nearly all of us, our vision is
obstructed in some way.
The good news is that we can re-make our vision so that it works for us in every
area, rather than hindering us. We can develop a workable vision. When we develop
a workable vision we will know the goals that really mean something to us, possibly
for the first time, and we will be empowered to follow them. A workable vision will
tune you into the real opportunities before you and filter out the irrelevant, saving
time, energy and overload. It will energize and inspire you. It will bring balance to
your life. It will sustain you in time of difficulties.
So how do we get such a beneficial vision for ourselves? The starting point is
increased self knowledge. We need to see very clearly what our deepest longings
and needs are. We need to know our true potential, to clear away the doubts and
limiting beliefs that can obscure our strengths (many of which may be completely
hidden from us). Having identified our true goals in life, we need then to connect
with and mobilise our resources so that we can achieve them.
There are many fine books available to help us in this – yet, working alone with
books, we can still miss so many truths about ourselves. For most of us, to truly
know ourselves intimately, we need to speak from the heart to a trusted, wise and
perceptive person who will see and uphold our potential, help us identify and clear
away doubts and confusion, who will replace the critical voices with an affirming and
inspiring one. The best of us only see ourselves from the inside and often we need
someone else to see us and bring forth our best attributes, our hidden longings, our
strengths and talents.
If you're lucky enough to have a friend, teacher or spiritual advisor who can help
you in this, that's great. In my opinion (and I admit I'm biased. I'm a coach, after all)
the quickest and most effective way to develop a workable vision is to find a coach
you can trust. If you'd like to be the joyful (and fairly rare in this modern world)
possessor of a workable vision, please call me for a free no-strings introductory
session to see if we could work well together.
Linda Markley http://www.clovercoaching.com