Ever wondered if your life is your vision? Are you moving along in the way that serves you, or someone else? Reflecting on whose journey your traveling can be worthwhile practice. As the saying goes, if you don’t know where you going, you might end up somewhere else. Not that ending up somewhere else is wrong. Meandering and moving with the universe is definitely freeing. It depends on whether meandering and ending up somewhere else aligns with your vision. It’s the keeper of the vision that’s important.
I tend to see myself as a young late bloomer. I was the youngest in my high school graduating class, skipping off to college at the tender age of 17. I struggled through college for 6 years, finally settling for a degree in psychology, which only meant more education. I then earned a master’s degree in counseling, only to discover that it would take two jobs to support my meager one-bedroom apartment, dog, and new Hyundai hatchback. One could say that I was meandering. I think my meandering was more related to my fear than my vision.
Nonetheless, each job, relationship, and transition brought me to where I am today...and honestly, I am grateful. What I have today is priceless…three amazing children, a loving, kind, and extremely patient husband, and work that is gratifying, overall. Yet, what I have today was not what I envisioned. I’ve often expressed, “I have no idea how I got here.” Honestly, I know how I got here…and it was not via my vision.
I believe, as many do, that the universe plays a instrumental role in moving us through life than some well-thought out plan. Believe me, the universe has a say in our plans and how they unfold. We can execute the most detailed plan imagined and the universe will ultimately determine how it transpires, or not. As Oprah proclaims, “What I know for sure,” is this: The voices in my head, laced with societal norms, were much more influential in my meandering than the universe. I was allowing my fear of failure to serve as my guidepost. Thankfully, the universe intervened a time or two and kept me moving toward where I am today, whether I knew it or not. Not!
What I’ve learned about our vision or lack of it has a lot to do with fear. Reflecting on my life, fear is what prevented me from listening to my voice and cultivating my vision. Lissa Rankin calls this our inner pilot light. I knew that I had one, even though it was barely flickering. I allowed fear to all but blow it out with inner voices such as, “You want to do what?” You can’t do that! You don’t have the money. You’re not smart enough. You’re not pretty enough. You sing? What will … think?” Those were the voices of fear inside my head, the voices that stifled risking or pursuing some serious life visioning. I settled time after time for something different than what I truly wanted. Don’t get me wrong, my stumbling around wasn’t all that bad. The universe and luck always seemed to have my back. I learned a lot, met a lot of wonderful people and mentors, and have a gratifying life. Thankfully, the stars aligned in my favor! My point? I didn’t create my vision. I didn’t design my life. Fear did…
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying that each and every step of our life needs to be planned out in detail without any flexibility for detours or off ramps. I’m also not saying that sacrificing and negotiating are not part of the vision process. What I’m talking about is being fully present as our life unfolds. Making life decisions that we own, are clear about, that serve us, and that fit with “our” vision. Even if it’s a collective vision that we’re designing with others, we own it to ourselves to ask, “Self, is this my vision?” Oprah would encourage us to design our lives, which includes writing the script. If your present is not your vision, then get yourself online and Google, “How to create your life vision.” The Internet Gods will provide you with a wealth of wonderful resources and aspiring professionals to choose from that go beyond the scope of this post. Explore them all and see which ones resonate with you most, or light your inner fire.
Before diving into creating a life vision, I recommend practicing some deep reflection that allows you to get some thoughts, assumptions, or voices out of your way. The three questions that continue to guide me with clearly out mind debris, I found in Christine Kane’s article, “What is a Vision Board for Success?” I tweaked the questions to include language and words that resonate with me most. The questions are:
- If money, people’s opinions and judgments, including my own, and fear were not factors, what would I do, be, and have in my life and in my relationships?
- What beliefs or things or voices will I have to let go of to create this in my life and relationships?
- What will I have to believe in order to be, do, and have these things and relationships?
Simply, these three questions invite us to envision life without barriers, release what does not serve me, and inspire a personal belief system that feeds me. These questions serve me daily in my yoga, mediation, and contemplation practices. They are simple, yet difficult questions because they invite us to dig deep into our mind, heart, and soul…and uncover our truest, most authentic life vision.
Sending you inspiration,