Having created an inspiring vision for your future and connected with people who can help you along the way, the final critical stage in the process is to develop your own personalised pathway – your unique route map to making your vision a reality.
Like planning a journey or holiday, making your vision a reality has three simple steps.
You need to consider:
Where am I now?
Where do I want to be?
How do I get there?
Step 1. Where am I now?
Take an honest look at Starting My Journey and answer the two questions. Use the scores to plot yourself on the map. Are you currently a follower, settler, dreamer or achiever?
Consider what staying in the same position as you are now for the rest of your life would be like. Would you be happy with the implications of this? Actions speak louder than words, so consider what you need to do differently to achieve your goals.
Step 2. Where do I want to be?
Take a fresh look at your Golden Ticket and choose the particular elements that really excite and inspire you. These may be about your ideal job, specific learning achievements or qualifications, fun experiences, positive people, or the difference you’ve made.
Now imagine you’ve achieved all these things, and you’re living and breathing everything important to you in your Golden Ticket. You have reached your destination, the top right zone of the map. You have made your vision real. Think about what this would look like? How does it feel? What do you hear yourself and other people saying?
Step 3. How do I get there?
Wherever you are now, however close you are to making your vision real, the exciting thing is you can make use of a range of different steps to help you get to where you want to be. These come in the form of:
The choice and combination of these working, learning, playing, and giving steps is completely up to you, and can be personalised to your own needs and circumstances.
Now imagine yourself celebrating your trip of a lifetime. You’ve reached your final destination, your Golden Ticket. When you look back which six steps do you feel have been key along the way?
Take a look at the images that illustrate some of the working, learning, playing and giving steps you may wish to take and select those that are relevant. These may all be within one section or could be a combination of all four. There is no right or wrong, it is your choice, your pathway. You could even create your own images if the ones here are not relevant.
You can do this a couple of ways. You may find it useful working backwards from your final destination. For example, what was the final step you took before you achieved your goal. What was the step before that which then enabled you to achieve this? By keeping working backwards you can focus on the opportunities rather than the obstacles.
If you struggle to look backwards however, think of the first two or three steps you need to take from where you are now. You could even combine both approaches, placing a step alternately from each end of the pathway.
Remember to be creative, some steps may be being worked on simultaneously. For example, you may be volunteering and at the same time, learning from a mentor, or gaining from work experience whilst also growing your network.
Whatever approach you use, it’s always useful to bounce ideas off someone you’ve connected with in your circle of support. Take time to creatively discuss the range of alternatives you have, how you’ll overcome potential obstacles and roadblocks, and the baby steps required to get the journey underway.
For the six images you have chosen, make a note of which these are in your Personalised Pathway. You may also want to create a Plan B using a different combination or ordering of working, learning, playing and giving steps.
And finally, always remember to continually review your Golden Ticket perhaps with the help of those in your circle of support as your journey will inevitably have a number of twists, turns and unexpected companions along the way.
Starting my journey
To start your journey towards your Golden Ticket it is important to plot where you are now by honestly answering the following questions.
Score yourself out of 10 as to how clear, exciting and meaningful is your vision for the future.
If your vision is really clear, you are excited by it and it means a lot to you then give yourself a 10. If you still feel unfocused about what you want to do and don’t therefore feel excited by it, then score yourself lower.
Score yourself out of 10 as to how proactive you have been in making your vision a reality.
Give yourself a 10 if you have really stretched yourself and created meaningful experiences, opportunities, and encounters, or a lower score if you have not done anything, stayed in your comfort zone and waited for things to happen.
Use the scores to plot yourself on the map:
If you find yourself here you may be guilty of not having your own vision for the future but following others and taking very few proactive steps yourself. There may be a number of reasons for this but don’t worry – find someone in your circle of support who can spend time helping you to take a few small steps to create that vision of your own and begin to make it a reality.
Finding yourself as a settler can sometimes mean that you have not been brave enough creating your vision for the future. You may have a lot of potential but for a number of reasons have decided to settle for something less than you are capable of. Revisit your Golden Ticket, perhaps with the help of someone who is creative and believes in you and make it bigger and bolder.
You may have a clear picture of where you want to go but have taken no action. If you don’t create the right experiences, opportunities and encounters then your vision will remain just a dream and never a reality. There may be reasons why you feel you cannot take action so seek help and start with some small steps.
You may have an exciting vision that you have taken practical steps to make real – well done for doing this. Remember though that this is an on-going process so build in time, perhaps with others in your circle of support who can help, to review your experiences and aspirations and keep updating your Golden Ticket so it remains relevant and meaningful for you.
Why this session is important
To help individual(s) to:
Identify where their vision is as they start their journey and how realistic this vision is
Explore the opportunities and routes available to them in working, learning, playing and giving to create a personalised pathway to making their vision real
Create their own pathway to making their vision real
Congratulate the individuals you are working with to have got to the point where they have created an inspiring vision for their future and begun connecting with people along the way to help them.
Explain that they are now at the stage to develop a personalised pathway to make their vision a reality. To do this they need to consider:
• Where they are now?
• Where they want to be?
• How will they get there?
Provide a copy of Starting My Journey and use the instructions to plot where they are on the map and identify if they are a follower, settler, dreamer or achiever. Allow some time for completion and then ask them what they think of where they currently are? Ask them to consider what staying in the same position as they are now would be like for the rest of the week of their lives?
Explain that no matter where they are currently they are going to begin to explore the next steps they wish to take to move themselves closer to making the Golden Ticket real.
Ask them to take a fresh look at their Golden Ticket and identify a particular element that really excites and motivates them. Encourage them to think what it would be like to have achieved this along with the other elements they have included in their vision. Ask them to consider what this would feel like? What would they be saying to themselves and what would others be saying?
As they have considered where they are now and where they would like to be, now they can begin to consider the steps between these two points. These steps are theirs to creatively design and can be developed from four dimensions of their life.
Working – gaining meaningful work-related experiences
Learning – developing relevant skills, attitudes, knowledge and confidence Playing – getting involved in opportunities to enjoy with positive people
Giving – making a difference to friends, family and community
They can do this in a couple of ways. Some may find it helpful to imagine themselves at the point when they have achieved all they have put on their Golden Ticket and then reflecting backwards from this considering what the final step was before they achieved their vision. Again then asking themselves what was the step before this one and so forth until they get to where they currently are.
Alternatively, others may choose to look at where they are now, and which steps they feel would be the first two or three that would help them to move forward. There is no right or wrong to this, it is up to them. Again, there is no right or wrong as to whether they choose to use all four dimensions of working, learning, playing or giving or alternatively only two or three.
Encourage individuals to use the Personalised Pathway Template to record which of the steps they have chosen to take, and in which order to achieve their Golden Ticket. Encourage individuals to reflect and share their personalised pathways.
It is useful to also reflect on changing priorities and actions and the usefulness of developing a Plan B to take account of the twists and turns along the way.
What other questions to ask/points to make
Again, be prepared to share some of your story, if it is appropriate. Explain the twists and turns of your own journey towards achieving your vision. How different dimensions of your life may have all played a part e.g. working, learning, playing and giving and how you may have had to develop contingencies and alternatives to get to where you want to be.
Make the point that keeping going when facing disappointment or when things go wrong can sometimes be challenging so to consider the support network developed in iCan Connect to help them keep motivated, resilient and supported.