The Power of Writing it Down
I’m a believer in the power of writing down your goals and dreams – to putting language to vision. And yet…I’m not always as consistent or mindful about it as I’d like to be. I get busy. Taking the time to write everything down seems like an extra step – when I could just dive in. But today I’m reminded that I’m doing myself a tremendous disservice. In my haste to just “get it all done” are my days really reflecting all that could be? I suspect there’s untapped possibility there…
I discovered the power of writing down my goals back in 2003. At the time I had my own events company in Seattle. I was married, but my kiddo hadn’t shown up on the scene. I was restless. I liked my work, but it allowed me to only exercise a fraction of who I am. I had been doing a ton of self-development, reading everything in sight, and somewhere along the way I read about the importance of writing down your goals – and I actually did something about it. Today, I dug out my old journal out of curiosity, to see exactly what I had written, and here is what I found listed under my goals for “career”:
I want do do work that utilizes my performance skills, challenges my mind, surrounds me with people who inspire me and focuses my passions. I want to create work that inspires others and becomes a renewable source of energy for me. I want to be able to travel with my work to other countries and still be able to establish and maintain a serene and nourishing home-base. I want my work to be a reflection of who I am.
Shortly after I had written this, an opportunity presented itself to develop a global customer experience program for a large digital media company. I had the privilege of traveling the world to facilitate the program for 11 offices worldwide. Because the program was CEO-mandated, I got to work with – and know – every employee in the company. I was tremendously inspired. I spent weeks in Paris, New York, LA, London, Dusseldorf, Hong Kong… For this Montana-girl, it was an adventure of a lifetime. And it set me on the path I’m on today.
Maybe it was coincidence that an opportunity to do meaningful work that utilized my skills and let me travel the world presented itself so quickly after I had written my goals. But I’m willing to gamble that there was more at play than that. And I’m realizing that there’s too much at stake to simply leave it to chance. If there’s something I can do today, to honor the sacred gift that is my time here on earth, to bring my best self to 2014, then do it I will!
Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life? – Mary Oliver