5 Questions to Carve Out an Intentional Future
Part of being a successful person is being intentional about your future. Leaders don’t see where life takes them, they guide and direct their life where they want it to go. They have dreams that they turn into goals, and then they break those goals down into milestones that create a path forward.
If you haven’t learned how to do that just yet, here are five questions you can use to help you begin to move your life into a future intentionally carved out by you.
1. If money and time were no object, where would I go, what would I like to do?
Goals always start with a dream. To dream appropriately, you have to take off the normal constraints. A dream is really a goal with no structure of how to get there, but all goals start as dreams. Sit down and brainstorm what you would do in all areas of your life if you took off these two constraints and write them down. There are no wrong answers when you are brainstorming. Don’t think about how you can’t do it, think about what you would do if you had all the money in the world and all the time to do it.
2. Which dreams are most important to me and why?
Asking this question helps you to narrow down that list so you can begin setting targets for your life. I recommend narrowing your lost to about five. After that, write down your “why” next to each of them. By putting your “why” with them, you put fuel in your tank to start moving towards these dreams. It will be energy when you feel like quitting or making your targets smaller. Everyone can feel overwhelmed when they have big dreams and goals, having a list and sharing it with someone you trust, will help you stay focused and create accountability.
3. Realistically, where am I today?
You can’t set proper milestones unless you have a realistic idea of where you are today. How can you map to a destination unless you know the originating point? This requires honesty and introspection. I recommend using a Wheel of Life assessment like the one found here. By answering honestly, this will give you an objective review of where you are in all areas of your life. Because our goals affect every area of our lives, it’s important to see where we are in those areas. I like to create target for those different areas so that I can create a quality of life in each one.
4. What are my options?
Every one of us have options for reaching our goals. We have people around us, assets we’ve collected and paths in front of us. With options to get to each milestone, you’re going to have to make some decisions. If you’re not sure which options to choose at times, ask a trusted person for advice. They may see other options you don’t. Choose one and move forward. If it isn’t working, fail fast. Cut your losses and move to the other option quickly. Don’t keep wasting your energy on an option that isn’t producing what it needs to in order to get you where you want to go.
5. What’s my next step?
John Maxwell uses the “Rule of Five” that I’ve been using for many years now. Do five things every day that will get you to your goal. Any more than that can cause burnout. Any less can keep you from progress. Take your time in determining what they might be, and don’t be afraid to adjust them over time. If you know what one or two are right now, get started doing those today and add the others as you move forward. Without this step, none of the others matter.
You can dream, strategize and plan all you want, but if you don’t take action, nothing will change. Get some quick easy wins up front to get some momentum, and start pushing for those dreams that were once out of reach.
As a leader you can't do it all and that's where we can help. Contact us today to see how The Trinfinity Group can support your vision and development needs of your team and organization.