– A Template for your vision and purpose –
“A goal without a plan is just a wish.” – Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
Fully living your purpose is one of the most rewarding life experiences ever. Doing something you love, creating world changing impact and earning good money as a side effect makes all the other joys of life appar small. Within the last 5 years I have spent a lot of time designing and creating my own life purpose. This Blog post is dedicated to share the most important essences for planning your purpose that I have discovered. Again there will be a visual worksheet in the end of the Blog-Post providing you with the Purpose Plan template I have designed.
Design your Life-Purpose
I discovered the concept of Life Purpose with 25 when one of my flatmates, who was deeply into personal development at the time, asked me what my life Purpose was. I studied economics at the time and tried to understand and change our economic system as the root of many global conflicits. But when I replied that my purpose and mission was to change our economic system that phrase just did not resonate. Allthough I found it meaningful I actually did not like studiying economics at all. That was the starting point of a 2 Year journey dedicated to discovering and designing my true Life Purpose. I will have another blog post about that story and Life Purpose design.
For now I want to share with you a simple technqiue that I have used ever since to plan the next steps of my mission. You can use this method in all stages of your development, whether you are just about to discover what you really want to do or you’re already living it, the template I’ve designed helps you to keep your vision up to date and find clarity on your next steps towards your life purpose!
Strategic planning is a must!
As I started to design and live my purpose I became aware of how important strategic thinking and planning is for that endevour. This is not a short sprint but a loong marathon. Really designing and living a purpose that deeply fullfills you will be a matter of several years. It might be good to know where you are actually going to take the neccessary steps towards that vision already today. I think we can all save ourselves a lot of frustration and resultless action if we start thinking strategically about our Purpose.
So I started studying strategic thinking and began searching for resources that could help me with that. However, what I found online and in startup workshops didn’t really speak to my cause. Abstract business plans and cash-flow sheets seemed to be useful for start-ups, but as a freelancing facilitator trying to make a living those categories just didn’t apply to me. How could I actually get started? What services and products could I create out of my passion? Finally I found answers in coaching programms and innovation incubators that took a slightly different appraoch. The Purpose Plan is a summary of the most useful tools that I have discovered.
The Purpose Plan – A template for your vision
It took me several years and some personal crises to find all the information I was looking for. I want to save you from having to go that thorny path as well and have summarises my findings the Purpose Plan. This template is a summary of the most important essences that helped me making a business our of my purpose. Let me guide you through the essential steps of the Template
1. Intention: Why do I want this?
Start with contemplating your intention. Why are you actually doing this? What is the greater need and purpose of your ambition? A strong understanding of you intention provides a solid foundation for your forther planning and action towards the thing that is calling you.
2. Vision: What future do I want to create?
While Intention focusses on the now, vision aims at the future. Allow yourselve to dream big here. What future do you want to create for yourself and others? How would the world look like in 30, 40, 50 years if you went all in and magical forced would support you. Someone once said “If you aim for Mars you might hit the Moon”. It’s not about actually getting there, your vision rather mobilises the necessary energy within and around you to be drawn to the envisioned results.
3. Prototypes: What things could I try out?
This insight way huge on my journey. Thinking about your intention and vision might pressure you to get started. Although that tension is good thing is also kills your creativity sometimes. Prototyping brings the playful energy back. Get into brainstorming mode and think of all the potential things you could be doing to reach your lofty vision. No need to commit to anything yet. Just open your mind to all the possibilites that are already there. After all you’re on this journey to enjoy yourself. Try to write down at least 20 things you could be doing. Often the most interesting ideas comes after we have gone through our default answers.
4. Three Year Plan: How is the rough path towards my vision?
Now we’re getting more concrete. Altough this is the most challenging step for most of us, realizing your vision will reqiuire you to become realiszic and start planning eventually. This 3 year roadmap does not have to be perfect or compltete, it rather bridges the gap between the now (Intention) and the future (vision). 3 Years is a perfect frame because it still allowes you to still dream while also thinking about the near future. Just aks yourself how your next 3 years would look like if everything worked our perfectly. Again this does not mean that you have to do all those thinngs. But bit brings some clarity to the road ahead and it will maybe even motivate you to see that there is a path towards your vision.
5. Milestones: What would you like to achieve?
Next think of all the milestones you would like to reach. Allow yourself to dream big again and think of the highest accomplishments you could get. Then think of an order that those might happen in. These Milestones provide further guidance for your dreams and allow them to become more concrete.
6. Next Steps: What 3 action steps could I do next week?
“Even the longest journey starts with the first step” (Dao De Jing – Ch. 64). This is the most important question. Deriving concrete action steps out of the work you’ve just done extremely powerful. It takes the momentum you just generated and supports your future action. So what things could you be doing next week to get started?
You find all of the above steps in the visual template I have designed. So download yourself a copy to get started with your purpose Plan. I recomment printing it out in A4 or A3 if possible! You could also use it digital an upload it into Miro for example. I sometimes use Miro for my own strategy work and love it to put editable post-its on pre-designed templates.
I also recommend you to use some visuals to make your template more alive. Check out my video blog about the Visual Practice Basics if you’d like some inspiration. Try working on it alone when you feel inspired or invite some friends to do it with you. I cannot stress enough how useful this work is. So start strategyzing towards your life purpose today to harvest the juicy fruits tomorrow!
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