Most of us who have been in the world of business know that a well-thought out business plan is the key to running a successful business. And yet, few of us take time to create a written life plan; a plan that details our vision for our life and what steps we are going to take to get there. We call this Apex Lifestyle Design.
Just like in business, if you want to live a fulfilling life that exceeds all your wildest dreams, writing a life plan is the first step to success.
1. Knowing Yourself: With vision and self-knowledge, it's kind of the chicken and the egg thing. You must know yourself in order to discover your vision, but your vision could shape who you are. In any case, to write a detailed plan of how you will achieve your vision, you must know who you are – your strengths and your weaknesses, your core values and beliefs. Ask yourself hard-hitting questions that reveal your true nature like "Do I have a sense of purpose? If so, what is it?" or "When I am the happiest or feel most at peace?" These types of questions will help you determine what you truly want from life.
2. Vision: If you don't know where you want to go, it's almost impossible to get there. Apex Lifestyle Designers grab vision by the horns. They reflect on what they feel passionate about, how they can change the world, and then they create a far-reaching vision statement. This vision is the core philosophy of what you want to accomplish, on where you see yourself in one year, five years, ten years. It's making a decision up front on how you see your life unfolding.
3. Outlook: Outlook is how you see things. Do you see an obstacle as something standing in the way from you getting what you want or as a challenge that invigorates you? It's kind of a glass half-full vs. glass half-empty mentality. A good life plan will recognize that there will be challenges along the way and lay out a plan to meet them with enthusiasm like a good crossword puzzle.
4. Goals: Just like in a business plan you have to set goals to achieve the things you want from life; monthly goals, weekly goals, daily goals. But unlike in business, these goals should encompass all areas of your life – mind, body and soul. Apex Lifestyle Designers pursue their vision with a fiery sense of urgency, but they also set goals that keep balance in their lives. They know that in order to perform at maximum velocity they must have periods of rest to rejuvenate the spirit. So, when you write your goals, think in terms of what you will do to pursue your passionate abstraction, your vision, and what you will do to tend to your health, both physical and mental.
5. Collaboration: True Apex Lifestyle Designers know that reaching a purpose-driven vision of their life can't be done alone. You need to make connections within the world around you. Leaders have the ability to inspire great things from those around them and part of a good life plan will include who you want to spend your time with and how you will inspire them. For each element of your plan, you will need to attract a certain person, or group of people; we call these specialty muses. These muses can help you take your vision to the next level.
6. Evaluation: A great life plan, just like a great business plan, will have built-in evaluation processes. How will you know if you are on the right track to fulfilling your vision, if you don't take time to stop and reflect on what you have accomplished? Celebrate the successes along the way and make sure that you are always driving towards that ultimate vision of your life.
Utilizing these elements be sure to take time to write a plan for your life. Only when it is written out will you be on your way to living life the way you always dreamed it.