You Must Have a Clear Picture

Do you have a clear picture of where you want to go?

Like a crystal clear picture? If the answer is yes, reply back and paint the picture for me. Tell me where you want to be in 5 years.

There’s a reason you need to be able to clearly describe your desired location. Until you know where you’re going, you can’t set a course to get there.

The majority of people treat life like an amateur sailor: they hop on a boat, point to a direction, and just sail. “We’ll get where we need to go, it’s my destiny,” they proclaim.

All the while, they end up spinning circles at sea until the crew starves, abandons ship, or crashes on a deserted island.

Expert sailors set the course for where they want to end up. They use the constellations as guides, plan for the trip, and then head to sea.

When the inevitable storms arrive or the winds blow them off-course, they continue to realign direction with their North Star and constellations until they arrive where they intended to go.

Hope is not a strategy for success.

  • I hope good things will happen to me.
  • I hope a dream job lands in my lap.
  • I hope my friends help me get better.

A winning strategy is one of intentional action.

  • I will make good things happen for me by taking action every day and putting myself in positions to seize opportunities.
  • I will work toward my dream job by networking with my industry peers, gaining job-specific knowledge, and building relationships at that company.
  • I will intentionally choose the people I invest time with so they are people who will challenge me, encourage me, and remind me of who I want to be in case I ever forget.

Like the skilled sailor, you need a clear direction (North Star) of where you’re trying to go or who you’re trying to become. If you haven’t yet, take out 3 sticky notes and on each write down:

  • 3 characteristics of the type of person you want to be in 5 years (what will others use to describe you)
  • the role in your career you’ll have
  • the feeling you want to feel when there.

Put those notes on your bathroom mirror, car dashboard, and office/computer so you see them multiple times a day.

Then we’ll get to work on taking steps to reach them.