The Project for Day 5: Paint a picture of what the ideal situation would look like in each of the battle lines you selected, focusing on the two you chose to use on Day 4: Facing the Brutal Facts.
You will create a vision of what the preferred reality looks like if you ‘win the battle’ in the two Battle Lines you selected to focus on Day 4.
Three Options to Paint Your Picture
We are all different. There’s no reason why we all have to do these steps the same way. The main thing is to immerse yourself in your reality should you achieve the goal or outcome you desire for your Battle Line life area. I’m giving suggested action steps, but engage each idea in the way that makes the most sense to you.
Goals, outcomes, and life planning are all intensely personal. No two of us approach life the same way. Without further ado, here are three possible ways to approach the idea of painting a picture of the ideal future for your Battle Lines.
Option 1: The Eulogy
Stephen Covey opens the second chapter of his classic The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People with a scene in which you are able to be present at your own funeral.
One way to Paint the Picture is to write out the way that you would like to be eulogized. The idea is that you would live your life with the goal of being remembered in a certain way.
- How do you want your spouse to eulogize you?
- How would you want your children to eulogize you?
- How about your ‘financial accounts’? (Personify your money – will your money say you were wise and giving, or selfish, indebted, and undisciplined?)
If you don’t want to write a speech, simply write how you’d like to be remembered. An example regarding being a parent:
I want my children to have felt fully loved by me–that I was always in their corners, even when I challenged them or set boundaries. I pray that as I grow old and they have families, that we’ll grow as friends and that I’ll be worthy of the role of ‘mentor.’ I also want them to have a treasure chest of fun memories.
Option 2: Stating the Ideal is if it already were
Write out what you would want your current situation to look like one year from now. Taking the Brutal Facts that I laid out in Day 4 about my health, I could write something like this:
I’m a 180, energetic 43 year old. I get up early and go for runs 3 times a week. I weight train 3 times a week. I regularly play with my children outside (and keep up). I’ve run in 2 10k races. I visit my doctor once a year and do not need medicine for any particular condition.
Option 3: Vision board
I’m adding this for those visually creative types. Create a vision board to paint your picture. Cut out pictures, quotes, etc. Paste it on a board. Put it on the wall in your office, in your closet, wherever you’ll run into it.
Principles to remember as you paint your picture:
- Perfection isn’t the goal. We’ll see soon that it’s about putting practices into place that supports a vision for the future – What does the guy who embodies our envisioned future do on a regular basis?
- People are involved: Assuming one of your Battle Lines is relational in nature, remember that while you’ll be painting a picture of how you hope that relationship grows and matures, you are never in full control. Your responsibility is always to your own actions and heart. You can’t create a picture of the perfect family and go tell your wife and kids to get to work. This is ‘me’ stuff, not ‘they’ stuff.
- Work: This is work. Remember your current reality and consider the road toward what you hope for. It will be a joyous slog, sometimes messy, but always worth it.
Here’s the action step again (using the ideas above):
- Pull out your two selected battle lines – the ones that you used yesterday.
- Paint the Picture of your ideal future for each.
Preview Day 6: On Day 6, we’re going to pull back a bit and give you a little time to catch up. We’ll talk about the Principle of Saying ‘No’. It’s absolutely vital to making consistent headway.
Don’t forget to click a social media button below and share this post if it’s helpful to you. Also, you can find links to each day’s post and worksheets along with other helpful resources here: 2014 Starting Well Resource Page.