Find Your Glasses
It took far too many years of driving around only finding street names because of the length of the words on the sign as opposed to any actual reading of the text. It took far too many frustrating moments when I wanted to see something far away and I just couldn't before I broke down and got my eyes checked. When I was told that I desperately needed glasses for distance vision I wasn't the least bit surprised. What did take me by surprise was how much of the world I was missing, and how beautiful things were again once I was able to actually see them. I don't love having to fumble with my glasses when I leave the house but I accept it as part of my responsibility to myself. (And others - you do NOT want me on the road without my glasses, people.) Without my glasses, the world is pretty fuzzy. Every time I put them on I have an “aha” moment. So THIS is what I’ve been missing! How can I possibly navigate my world when it is not in focus?
Seeing clearly makes total sense when it comes to our goals and our vision for our own lives, and our own future. We need to see things clearly in order to accept them into our lives and think of them as a reasonable, reachable part of our future. How can we really start looking forward to what we want if we don't know what that even looks like?
There are many people who talk to themselves about what they might want to do. While sitting at a red light with a little time for quiet reflection it pops into their head. It is a passing thought and regardless of whether it is a decent goal for which to strive, it usually dies on impact. It was thought about, mulled over, and then literally flew away.
There are many who will take that fleeting thought and actually dig a little deeper, thinking further about how it might work for them, or how it might impact their lives. They may even commit to doing it, making an agreement with themselves to just do it. And, like so many other things that we think hard about, it flies away. We break our commitment, forget about why we thought it was a good idea in the first place, and move on.
There are far fewer out there who will think about a goal and actually write it down. This is a scientifically proven way to get further with our goal attainment - the simple act of writing it down. And if it can be written down following the basic rules of goal writing (making it a S.M.A.R.T. goal), the odds of pursuing it more thoughtfully and potentially reaching it are far greater still. But even then, having written it down, that goal might not ever be anything more than something tacked on the fridge gathering dust.
Goals are thought about and forgotten. Maybe they are talked about and accepted, then forgotten. They are written down, smartly, and way more likely to be achieved. But we can do even more.
We can approach our goals with true vision. Using all of our creative acumen, we can visualize and see what our lives will look like if we achieve that particular goal for ourselves. Pinpoint the details. Think about all of the senses and how they would be affected. Most of all, think about how it would feel. If the future I want for myself includes writing a novel, I will start by writing that down. What kind of novel is in my vision? What does it look like? What is the title? What does the cover look like? What am I wearing when I meet with my agent? What does the story entail? How do the pages feel and smell in my hands when I receive the first copy? How do I feel when I type that last chapter and share it with my spouse? How much money will I earn from the sales? And on, and on, and on, until someone else who saw my goal for writing a novel would know precisely what it is I’m looking to do. Set the goal by creating a real vision for what it looks like in our lives. That vision is more likely to become a reality because we can see what we are reaching for clearly. We can focus in on it. And we are less likely to forget its importance in our lives.
This is nothing new or extraordinary. It is really just creating a vision board - setting forth with images and words and emotions what we want. Why do you think they call them vision boards? They are literally the detailed and very specific images of what you want in your life, or for your life. See your goals and great ideas for your life in the most vivid detail. Know the color, shape, size, value, ins and outs and everything in between. Work to literally see it. That is really the hard work. Then you can take the next step, which is a bit easier now that you know what you want, and that is to go for it.
When it comes to your goals and your dreams, it takes a little vision. It takes bringing things into focus and looking clearly at them in exhaustive detail so that you can be sure of what it will take to get there. The French novelist Marcel Proust reminds us - The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes. Explore the world before you with a heightened sense of clarity. Allow yourself to dream big about what it means. Search for the details of the wants and desires and be responsible for deciding how to live your best life.
Find your new eyes so you can see your goals. Write them down. Find your glasses so you don't miss anything important. And please don’t you dare think about driving without them. I won't if you won't.