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Episode 51 – Create a Life Plan In 5 Easy Steps


Episode 51: Create A Life Plan In 5 Easy Steps

In today’s episode we’re going to create a life plan in 5 easy steps. Here’s the thing, building an authentic life takes work.  But, the benefits of creating this type of life plan are numerous: enhanced clarity, creativity, and it provides a sense of personal power.

Read Transcript & Show Notes Below

In today’s episode we’re going to create a life plan in 5 easy steps. I want you to really take your time with this episode and if you want to have a listen and come back to it, I welcome you to do that. If you want to get started right away, I suggest you get a few pieces of paper ready or better yet, a roll of craft paper. Markers or crayons would be ideal as well.

Here’s the thing, building an authentic life takes work.  Creating a life plan takes even more work. I hear ya if you don’t see value here. In fact, I usually take up to 2-3 one-on-one sessions with my private clients to get this work done (because of the back & forth nature of Questions & Answers). As well, my clients are doing “the work” in between sessions, much like creating a financial plan. These things can take as much time as you wish. In my program, The ProMind Experience, I take a whole module to target this exercise.

Why Create A Life Plan ?

The benefits of creating this type of life plan are numerous. In particular, enhanced clarity, creativity, and also a sense of personal power. When you are feeling adrift, or you feel you need to tighten-up on life priorities, going back to your life plan can feel so empowering and rewarding. In my opinion, two of the biggest pitfalls that interfere with building that authentic life, and sticking to that life plan are:

  1. we’re constantly having to adapt and change to external circumstances, and as a result…
  2. we lose momentum and drive to pursue our deepest desires.

Right now, things feel like they’re outside of our control. If you’re one of the people that likes to constantly pursue your best life, and you want to feel like you’ve got some control –  then you’ll likely want to stay with me here. Let’s get cozy!

I chose to do this episode towards the end of January for 2 reasons:  

1) To offer you my skills at helping you develop a strategic and achievable plan for yourself.

2) To help you get back some of momentum from your New Year’s Resolutions.

Let me say this, before going into the strategy…

Despite the many challenges with COVID-19 restrictions, and possibly putting in long hours at work, it’s time to reconnect with our deepest desires and move aside the uncertainty. You CAN have everything you desire – it just takes time and strategy. You CAN improve your closest relationships, and explore new ways that you can relate to them. And, you CAN reach higher than you ever have before…with just a little bit of time and your creative imagination. As well, you can really improve your health, and form new health habits ( see episode 22 – Deconstrucing Routines and  Changing Daily Habits) by making a choice TODAY to create your life plan. Regardless of external circumstances, you have control over your health habits because you can control two basic processes: your diet and your sleep. 

A Life Plan Builds Structure 

The beauty of taking the time out to create a life plan is that it provides you with structure, and gives you a great idea of where you might be losing time (in areas that are no longer useful to your personal growth). A life plan allows you to adapt to change and create presence in your life because you’re the one in control. Right now, we all could use a little dose of personal control.  

Here Are The 5 Easy Steps To Create A Life Plan  

Step 1 – Plan Ahead To Take Time For Yourself

 The most effective way to really have success at achieving a goal is to have a well-executed plan. But this is only the beginning, because we’re at the planning phase of the planning phase. Sound complicated? Well, you have to carve-out time to sit down and really be present. 

What You Need: 

Try to block-off at least 2 hours in your calendar where you’ll be uninterrupted. If you can’t do that much time all at once, block off 2 slots and do that this week. Put 2 reminders in your ical, one that gives you a day’s notice and the other to give you a few hours notice.  Step 1 -plan ahead and if you’ve got this time now. This is really important to get you to take action 

  1. Paper & pencil supplies. You can put together a couple sheets of paper, or a legal size paper. A roll of craft paper is ideal because it’s wide enough to do the type of mind-mapping we’ll be doing today… so you never run out of space. If you have a white board, that’s great and just take a picture of it and have it on your phone for future reference.  Don’t forget to include a cool set of colourful pens, markers or pencils. Those are not just for kids!

OK let’s do it.

Step 2 – Prepare To Dream

Remember what I said earlier,  it’s time to reconnect with our deepest desires and move aside the uncertainty. You CAN have everything you desire – it just takes time and strategy – and the strategy we’re implementing in episode 51 is to Create a Life Plan. I want to remind you that you CAN reach higher than you ever have before. It’s just going to require a little bit of time and your creative imagination.

So if you’re doing this with me now…let’s close our eyes, and look up to the left of your view and try to imagine a scene on the wall ahead of you – not in your mind’s eye because that can keep you in your mind.

We want to activate the creative mind. Imagine a scene that’s very relaxing….a place you’ve been that you’d like to go again… forward a few months, and see a different version of yourself. If you’re coming back to this, just know that this is a very important step to beginning your life plan – ground yourself and allow yourself to dream. No dream is too big. And you’ll see what I mean by that as we go along.

Can you just let go and set the intention to be real and authentic? This is your life plan, and you don’t have to share it with anyone unless you want to.

OK so open your eyes and let’s begin. 

Step 3 – Draw A Big Circle In The Middle Of Your Paper

Here you’ll start to carve out all the zones you currently reside in (parent zone, artist zone or whatever your hobbies are, physiology/health zone, professional zone, social/cultural zone, student zone, and emotional/spiritual areas of your life. etc…) like pieces of a pie. Think of dividing your big circle into eight pieces…to leave yourself room for new zones in Step 4. You should start to have a drawing that resembles a bicycle wheel, and each zone of your life represents a spoke. 

Next, inside your zones (spokes) jot down a few adjectives that represent how you generally feel in each of these current zones. You can start to colour code them by your favourite colours that you feel represent you in that zone. For example, the self-care/personal development zone might be purpose. 

Here are some statements that might help you be in the moment:

I spend a lot of time doing…

I think often about…

I emotionally depend on…(relationships zone)

To feel alive, I….(personal development zone)

I experience purpose when I…(self-care)

I feel love when…

I feel important and special when…and this next one is really important in mapping-out a new zone

I feel safe & certain when…

Next, let’s go to the outside of each of your spokes, or pieces of the pie. Write out a few bullet points of the CURRENT FEELINGS that you experience next to each zone. This is part of looking at your present, and should give you a broad focus of where your life is at right now. Consider this part of the exercise as a self-exploration of what’s important to you. You’re taking stock of what’s going-on and next we’re going to evaluate if you need something different in your life.

How are you feeling love, certainty, and purpose in your life? We’re looking at how you relate to yourself, and how we can bring-in more balance, love and livelihood in your life.

So now that you have a big wheel, with your most prominent areas of your life, and the most prominent feelings that reside in these…what are you starting to see? Are you seeing any patterns that you like or you don’t like? Is there anything missing or are you tapping yourself on the back right now for how your life looks and how you’re living? 

Step 4 – Are there life zones you’d like to add?

Here’s where you’ll start to create new zones you want to add to your wheel of life. Let me prompt you with some questions:

What would you like for your work this year? And what about travel? Many of us are restricted in travel at the moment but it’s not forever, so if you’d like to book a family vacation or a trip on your own someplace you’ve always wanted to visit – this zone can help you prepare to make that a reality, such as saving money, learning a new language, do you need a certain backpack or new set of suitcases that you can purchase to get your mind into that zone?

What about a Volunteer zone? Might you be interested in doing board work?  

New Home or Marriage zone? This can be projects in your home, or you’re actually engaged right now and planning a wedding so that’ll be a zone that might take over and eventually turn into a family zone. 

Might you want to add a Personal Development zone or Health Zone?

All of these could help you attend to personal significance, growth as well as connection. See Episode 6 on 6 Human Needs. You must be health conscious if you started working as a health practitioner so why not add that new zone if it’s not there already. 

Do you have a wellness zone?

Here are some statements that might help you be in the moment:

I spend a lot of time doing…

I think often about…

I emotionally depend on…

To feel alive, I….

I experience purpose when I…

I feel important and special when…and this next one is really important in mapping-out a new zone

I feel safe & certain when…

Step 5 – Create New Emotional States

This is the fun part where you start to use the power of your imagination. Let’s day dream for a little bit and look at each of your life zones, both the current and desired. And start writing on the outside of each of these zones how you want to feel. Earlier, we looked at how you’re currently feeling in each. Perhaps you were feeling pretty impatient in some of the zones and you really want to change your emotional state to being patient. 

Create new states in each of your zones. Next to each, you could even write a powerful “I AM” statement that exudes your new you. 

If you’re considering shifting into a better place, our digital mantra-style meditation course can get you there. Here’s the link to my Mantra Studio page where you can explore some of the most common questions and concerns about meditation and why this style is the ideal style to help with cognition and creativity. 

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