Visioning – sounds great but what really is visioning and how can it be of benefit to us in our personal and work lives?
Sometimes life can feel like we are constantly hurdling cabbages – but if we see those cabbages in a different light and focus on the end of the field how much better does this seem? and how much more do we feel inspired to get there? Some feel there is a difference between visualisation (seeing something specific) and visioning (letting visions come to you) but we think that visioning really encompasses getting you where you want to be.
It takes practice to regularly revisit our vision and to reappraise where we are in relation to achieving it. We also need to be clear about factors that may have influenced changes along the way and lead us to reappraise or set new timelines to achieve what we want – but as long as we remain true to our vision we are always on the path to achieving it no matter if we have had to hurdle some bigger cabbages than we thought or to change our path through a less muddy route!
Here are some tips to help you define your vision and stay on the path to achieving it – both for yourself and if you have a team of other stakeholders involved too
- Explore the options – bluesky thinking – what do you see yourself doing? where do you want to get to? what does achievement look and feel like? Don’t let any but’s, what’s or if’s creep in at this stage – if you are visioning with your team – make sure everyone has had their say. Can you draw it? Describe it? Feel it?
- A good tool you can use next is Edward de Bonos thinking hats – this allows you to constructively look at that vision from all perspectives – on your own or as a team. See http://www.debonogroup.com/six_thinking_hats.php
- Now it’s time to get more analytical – what are the cabbages that might be in your way – any hurdles? open gates you can take? think about what if’s if they didn’t come to light using de Bonos thinking hats method
- Think about who can support you when you feel you are struggling to get there and how can they support you – let them know in advance. If you have a team project make sure everyone considers how this would best work for them
- Set some regular agreed review points and milestones – don’t be afraid to discuss/consider whether your vision has changed – it’s ok for it to change as long as you are still on that journey
- Celebrate the small steps on route!
- Make sure you know when you have got there and say so! – a great achievement
A Story from the Middle Ages
Overview of Vision and the Visioning Process
Three stone masons in the Middle Ages were hard at work when a visitor came along and asked them what they were doing. The first stone mason was hard at work, sweat beading his brow. “I am cutting this stone,” he grumbled. The second stone mason, though less distraught, responded with a deep sigh, “I’m building a parapet.” The third stone mason replied with a radiant face, “I am building a beautiful cathedral that will glorify God for centuries to come.”
— Author unknown