My sister asked me the other day “Lou, what should I do with my life?” When I responded by telling her she needs to figure that out for herself, she said “Oh. I thought you’d have an opinion. You’re good at life-ing. I’ve just been cruising.”

Lately, I have been assessing my life and business goals for the first time in over two years. It’s something I have done regularly throughout my life that’s helped me achieve things and develop as a person, but I haven’t felt able to fully reassess my life direction until now, because there have been so many big changes happening for me. But once I started seeing a clear path ahead, I felt ready to make things happen again.

Do what works for you

 

Over the years I’ve read books and used various online tools to help me do this, using whatever works best for me. Now I follow a formula in a template document that I simply write over and update each time I do it, which is roughly every 3 months.

One book that really helped me when I first started my business was She Takes on the World by Natalie MacNeil. Over 5 months while travelling I took the time to properly dive into all the juicy exercises in her book (I’m a slow reader). I still use parts of it today.

Getting to know you(rself)

 

When my sister asked me that question, I recommended she start with a few simple exercises to get to know what’s important to her, what she likes and dislikes doing, and how she feels about her life right now.

She then shared my advice with one of her friends, who admitted she also never really made life plans, which made me think rather than keeping this dynamite to myself and the people close to me, you lovely people might also want to know!

None of these exercises take a particularly long time. It’ll take 2 hours max if you do it all in one go.

Here are my 4 exercises to help you get clarity:

  1. List the things you currently spend time doing regularly. Split them into two columns, Want To Do More and Want To Do Less. For example, I spend time each week cleaning and swimming. I put cleaning in the Want To Do Less column, and swimming in Want To Do More.
  2. The Wheel of Life. This helps you assess how you feel about each area of your life in turn, such as career/business, love/romance, environment, friends/family etc. If your life is perfect, you will have a big smooth wheel. If you’re unhappy with all areas of your life, you’ll have a small wheel. And if there are some areas that you’re happier with than others, you’ll have a wonky wheel. There are plenty more examples of Wheels of Life out there, but here’s one to get you started.
  3. What are your values? Listing these out will help you get a better idea of what is important to you. Here is a simple list of words. Write down all the words that align with you. If you can, try to pick out the top three most important values that you want to or are already living by.
  4. Write down what your perfect day looks like, from the moment you wake up to the time you go to bed. What do you eat, where do you go, who do you spend time with, what do you do? This helps you realise what you really want to be doing with your time, in an ideal world where money is no object.

Once you know yourself, the goals will follow. I’ll continue this with a blog about making actual goals later.

I’ve been collaborating with Julie Cooper of Spring Development to put all these exercises and more into a book to help you get clear on your life and career goals. It’ll be out in 2019 so watch this space. (This is me, holding myself accountable to bringing a book out. That’s not terrifying at all. Eeep!)