Pillar #2=Setting the Vision for personal growth.
Once you have begun to take personal responsibility (Step 1) and accept that you have the ability to choose how you will think, feel and act, you are ready to begin to reach for the future that you desire. The next step is to clearly outline your vision. You may have experience doing this with your organization, but have you ever thought to do it for your own life? Creating your personal vision statement is just as important for you as it is for an organization that is forming their vision statement.
There are many important individual benefits of creating your personal vision statement. For example, how do you know that actions you take are purposeful if you do not know what you are working toward? When you have a vision, you can choose the profession to be in, the organization you want to work with, the people you want to spend time with who share your interests and goals as well as the activities that you want to join outside of your work and family life. When you know the ultimate goal that you want to reach, you will be able to take strategic steps that will help you move towards that goal.
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is famous for his vision. Dr. King’s vision was equality. He took various avenues to reach this vision, from the Alabama boycott of the city buses to being largely responsible for the passing of the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act. If Dr. King did not have the goal to end racism in the United States, he may not have been able to influence so many aspects of our society. For example, what if Dr. King’s actions only spoke to making changes in the ways that the city buses functioned in Montgomery, Alabama? He may have only affected one state’s actions. Would that have translated to change in the nation as a whole?
When you have a vision for your life, just like you have for your organization, you can better guide your actions toward reaching that vision. Hildy Gottlieb, in 3 Statements That Can Change the World : Mission/Vision/Values, speaks about the difference between a visionary and a missionary. A visionary is someone who sees what is possible. A missionary is someone who fulfills the work. She states “Our favorite example of this everyday usage is Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus was a visionary. He saw the potential, the possibilities for making life better. His missionaries carry his work and his words to the world, putting his vision into practice.”
When we can clearly create or identify our visions, we can begin our mission of fulfilling that vision. What positive changes do you want in your life? What do you want your legacy to be when you pass? That legacy is your vision. Think about it now and then start taking the steps that will get you to reach your vision. Working on these steps now will help you to lead a more fulfilling and purposeful life which ultimately leads to happiness.