Over the weekend, I attended a retreat focused on our holistic lives as women – the connection between career, love and wellness. It was a valuable and restorative weekend and a chance to meet some fascinating women. One of the first exercises we did to kick off the weekend was to envision our ten year reunion as a group. We were to meet three new people, but rather than talk about where we are now in our lives, we were to tell them what we’d been up to since we last saw each other in 2015. It was an interesting twist on an introduction activity and got us started on what we were there to do.
I realize that for many people, I may have just described your worst nightmare. Not only an ice-breaker, but the same ice-breaker done three times. And while I do tend to enjoy a good ice-breaker more than the average person, I especially loved the opportunity to do this three times. We were encouraged to use this chance to go dream shopping. You could use the same update three times and fine-tune a dream you’d already done some thinking about, or you could start over from scratch each time and tell and completely different story about where your life had gone. I moved to Vancouver, northern California and then was bi-coastal. I continued my consulting business, started a new business and then combined them both by the third time. As for my colleagues, there were lots of trips, new babies, new business ventures and some exotic new home bases.
Future visioning is certainly nothing new and you may not have a group of new people to meet, but there’s something incredibly powerful about saying these words out loud. A trusted colleague, a friend, partner or parent can be a great sounding board to try out your own future update. What would you dream? What’s been rattling around in your head that deserves to be heard? Or is there a decision you’ve been on the fence about? Giving voice to both side of the decision can be helpful. Where could you be in ten years?