Visionary Planning

Feb 5, 2014 12:00:00 AM · by Karl Dinse

Now that most of you have thought about what you want to accomplish next year (including how you want to accomplish it), and have even done some traditional planning with objectives, metrics, and desired outcomes, perhaps it's time for a different perspective.

How about looking at your next 12 months from the 12th month backward?


This has proven to bring amazing results with our professional staff. Here’s how it works...

First, see yourself in a comfortable physical space where you enjoy spending time, whether it’s a favorite vacation spot or simply at home in a particular room in a relaxed, comfortable mode.

It’s one year from now, and you’re looking back at the past 12 months and complimenting yourself on all the good things that have happened, as well as looking at the struggles that you faced and overcame.

So, you will want to write down how the year went, with periods of months or less if you know of special occasions that will occur during a specific time.

You will write down what happened and how you dealt with each particular situation or challenge. You will write down the outcome.

And there certainly may be some setbacks or even failures that occurred while on your journey.

How did you handle those setbacks?

Describe your behavior. What adjustments did you make when things didn’t go as planned? What did you do when the worst-case scenario actually occurred? When you truly think about your life in these terms, you will most certainly improve your ability to anticipate events and model an appropriate related behavior.

Of course, you will celebrate successes as well.

You will think about how good you feel regarding your accomplishments. Some of those will be home runs and others singles, but they all count toward building your self-worth, self-confidence, and identity.

What’s your behavior like during these events?

Are you happy?

Is there humility or arrogance in your wins? What type of behavior is there in your losses?

Are you picking yourself back up quickly and moving forward with an attitude and energy that will get you back on your game? How long is that taking?

What is the consequence of the comeback dragging out over an extended period of time?

When doing this exercise, it’s important to look at all aspects of your life — not just your business experiences, but also your personal experiences.

What can you anticipate as personal losses?

How will you handle these? What are the options you will be facing? Write this vision in a story form.

Make this very personal and for your eyes only. This will allow you to be completely open and honest with your story.

Create your vision in a one- or two-page document at the most. Seal it in an envelope and make sure you open and read it 12 months from the time you wrote it.

You’ll be amazed when you do.

You may also like: Resumes: What's the Same as 20 Years Ago? What's Different?

General, Corporate Culture


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