A couple of weeks ago I gave a talk at KY-Akademien, a college for advanced vocational education and training here in Gothenburg, Sweden. The audience was the students at the two-year programme for Advertising and Marketing and my topic was “Vision and goals (and how it really works in everyday life),” on how to do to define a long-term vision for yourself or your business and break it down into shorter, more detailed milestones (and in particular on the importance thereof).
At the end of the half day seminar, each of the students were asked to illustrate his or her vision, i.e. the desired future situation they want to experience in approximately 5 years, and present it the following day.
In the presentations the next day we got to see incredibly intricate and inspirational visualizations of the desired future. Someone showed a short film in which he visited himself in five years, someone was reading a text in literary style, which described a typical day in 2015, someone had written a letter to himself from his future, five years older self. We were shown mood boards, animations, sketches, watercolors, photographs and much more.
I would like to highlight what one of the students had done. I think it was a multifaceted and elegant solution to the challenge of making it clear to oneself that you move forward, in the right direction.
In addition to illustrating her vision, she had identified about 30 goals, big and small things that she thought that she would need to do or achieve in order to make the vision come true.
She had written each of these goals on a matchstick (about 30 in total). In the box that she kept them in, a label said, “Goals”.
When she achieves one of these goals, she picks up the right match, lights it and watches it burn up. “Now it’s done!”.
Here is a picture of the matchbox and the matchsticks.
An extra dimension is that she talked about herself as being a collector who easily accumulates a lot of stuff and has a somewhat hard time to throw stuff away. The good thing is that when she will have met all objectives, there is no symbolic sticks left, but everything is burned and gone.
Only the most important thing is left — life as she wants it.