A letter to yourself…

Have you ever written one? If not, don’t immediately dismiss the idea. It’s a powerful motivational tool that I’ve been encouraged to do several times now and one which can really help to provide clarity on what you want – both in the short and longer term.

So grab a pen and some paper, get yourself comfortable and reflect on the following questions, jotting down your thoughts as you go. You don’t have to answer them all, just the ones that resonate with you. And don’t worry about making it particularly coherent at the moment.

My only “rules” are to stay open-minded, to not rule anything out as being unrealistic and to couch your notes in terms of positives. By that I mean instead of writing down what you don’t want, flip it into a positive instead, so something you do want. The act of reflecting on what we don’t want can be massively helpful in working out what we do, but negative language is rarely motivating, so focus on the opposite.

  • Are you focused on your life more generally at the moment or do you have a specific goal that you want to tailor this exercise to? For example, it could a letter from yourself at the end of your life or just in 12 months time. Keep this in mind as you answer the following questions.
  • In whatever timeframe you’ve set, how do you want to feel?
  • Where will you be? Who will you be with? What will you be doing?
  • What experiences would you love to have had? What sort of life would you ideally have lived? What dreams would you have followed? And what adventures might you be planning next?
  • What values and attributes would you have cultivated to achieve this?
  • What wisdom would you pass on to future generations?

And anything else that springs to mind.

Then consider turning those thoughts into some sort of vision board / letter / postcard / email.

Capture that goal with words, photos, objects, prompts that you can use to remind and motivate you on a daily basis. And think of one thing you can do today to make this goal a little bit more real.

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