If you don’t know where you are going, any road will get you there.
Have you mapped out your personal vision for your life?
Have you worked backward to determine the steps you need to take to get you there?
In the corporate world, the most successful businesses have a clear vision, followed by a roadmap to get them there.
But have you stopped to think about the vision for your life?
Today, we are going to walk through what you need to do to get super clear on your personal life vision, what I like to call your Destiny by Design and we are going talk through how to jump forward to the future, envision your destiny, your future, and then walk it back so that you can implement the actions you must take to live out the life you have always dreamed of.
Are You Living Out Your Destiny by Design?
So many of us have goals that we have set for ourselves. Graduate college, get married, earn six figures, and climb the corporate ladder.
We have even set ones for our personal lives such as losing weight, traveling more, and spending time with our kids. It is these goals that tend to hang in the air as the “nice to haves” that aren’t quantified. They become these aspirational ideals that we hope will just happen while we live out our life chasing corporate dreams.
That isn’t how this works.
You must get crystal clear on what it is you want your life to look like.
You must have such a vivid and evocative vision for your life, the one and only life you get, that you inspire yourself, and others around you to do the work, so that you can live the life you want.
I want you to close your eyes, and fast forward three years.
Where do you live? What does your home look like? Are you living in a 4-bedroom house in suburbia on a cul-de-sac, or a high rise in NYC looking over the Hudson River?
Is your home cozy or does it have more of a modern art vibe?
How do you feel when you are in your home?
What type of job do you have?
What type of company do you run, (yes - I said run 'cause you are dreaming BIG here today!) What is the culture like? What is the vibe? Who are the types of people that work with you? Visionary? Are they strategic?
How do you spend your time when you are not working? Traveling? Volunteering?
What do people say about you when they think of you?
If you have a partner, what do they say about you? What do they perceive your strengths to be?
If you envision a partnership or marriage, what does that union look like?
If you have kids, what does your relationship with your kids look like? What types of things do you do together?
What do your friendships look and feel like?
You may be asking me, why three years? Why not one year, or five years, or even ten years?
Three years from now is enough time that you can wildly change your life. It will go by in a flash, but when you intentionally plan out your vision, your Destiny by Design, you will be able to map out the answers to your questions above.
Before we dive into the “how” I want you to reflect back on your answers. I don’t want you to base your answers on your reality. I want you to dream BIG. Your Destiny by Design should feel a little wild! A little out of reach. It should also feel inspiring. It needs to light a fire inside of you so bright that no one can deter you from chasing after your destiny.
If you need to go back and dream bigger, do it now.
If you felt yourself pausing and judging your answers, go back and do this exercise again.
If you struggled to dream big when you answered these questions, I want you to close your notebook, and go somewhere else, not your office, not your current home, but somewhere that inspires you, that has a different vibe, and try again.
Writing out future dreams when you are sitting in your current reality can be limiting. Find a place where you clear your mind of today's worries, and look into your future.
When you are ready, when you feel confident, but also a little scared with what you wrote down, come back to me, and let's get into the how.
Walk It Backwards
I’ll walk it back by working through my Destiny by Design with you.
The vision I have for myself and my family is that we travel. A lot. We have the freedom, both financially with with our careers, to travel whenever, and wherever we want, in comfort and style. My kids are growing up appreciating the differences that exist all over the world, they are exposed to different cultures and lives, and they are learning so much through experience.
I am changing the lives of 100,000 people per year.
Wait. Scratch that. That isn’t scary enough. That isn’t inspiring enough.
I am changing the lives of 500,000 people per year. Actually, let's go 1 Million.
I am changing the lives of 1 million people per year.
My marriage is strong. My husband is a true partner in life. Our communication game is strong. Our bond is strong. And we laugh a lot as we travel the world.
The freedom I have with my finances is that I can take care of everyone in my life. I can bring them on trips and provide a level of comfort for them.
My work gives me a feeling of fulfillment and a feeling of freedom. The people on my team are goal-getters as well, who love a hustle, but also love balance and boundaries, and I am surrounded by others who are greater than me and who inspire me.
My Rolodex is filled with exceptional people who are visionaries, who aren’t scared of chasing dreams, even when you have to go through hard things to get there. I work with people all over the world, because we have the freedom of remote work, and they too, love to experience life.
Everyone in my circle is laser-focused on doing meaningful and fulfilling work and living life through experiences.
I take care of myself through my fitness game, and massages and facials are a part of my regular routine.
Does My Destiny By Design Scare You?
Does it give you pause? Are you saying “One Million Lives per YEAR, Erica? Really? How the hell are you going to do that?”
Here is the best part. I don’t know yet. But I can see it. I can dream it. And I trust that I will get there.
I imagine I can do this through authoring books, podcasts, and speaking engagements. I can inspire through social media and channels that might not exist today!
That is the fun part. To reach these big and scary dreams, you may not have that exact step-by-step roadmap to success, because what you dream, may require technologies that are not even available to the world yet!
When Steve Jobs envisioned the iPhone, a phone without a keyboard, do you think he knew the exact technology that he would use to create the iPhone? Heck no! But he had a vision. And he surrounded himself with brilliant people who believed in his vision, to create the iPhone.
Your Destiny By Design will involve failure. It will involve pivots. It will require you to trust that you may not have all the answers today, but that you trust they will come.
So back to my three-year plan, my Destiny By Design.
While I may not have all the answers, here is what I do know.
I have a podcast, I can continue to capitalize on that. I can look for people who can bring in more and more listeners, and I can grow my audience through them.
I can go big on my speaking engagements by taking more engagements, going after bigger audiences, and connecting with speaker bureaus, doubling down in my community, and putting myself out there more.
The point is, there is a lot I can do today, with the technology and methods that I am familiar with while I grow and expand.
The same goes for you.
If your Destiny By Design is to climb the corporate ladder and be the CEO of a 10-figure business, what do you need to do to get there? Who do you need to be working with? What gaps do you need to fill on your leadership team? How can you communicate your vision to your employees and colleagues about where you are going?
There is always some step you can take.
And with each day, and each step you take, I want you to ask yourself if this is getting you closer to your Destiny by Design. If it's not, you know it isn’t something that is meant for you. If your vision involves a person who is healthy and fit, your daily actions add up - and before you order that burger, fries, and shake, you can ask yourself, does this get me closer to my goal?
Michelle Obama said, “If you want to be an honest person, be an honest person.”
It is that easy, and that hard.
If you are steadfast in your dreams, you believe in yourself and trust that even though you may not know the step-by-step directions yet, you know the destination.
Work your vision backward where you can, and trust that what you don’t know, will show itself with time.
And lastly, know when to pause and pivot.
Your vision may not turn out the exact way you imagined it. Do not hold so tightly to a vision, that you fail to see the obvious answer in front of you.
Your Destiny - Your Dream - Your Decision
Friend, the last thing I want you to understand is that this is your destiny. This is your dream, and it is your decision. Do not, I repeat, do NOT, live your life for someone else's dream.
I have heard so many women say on my podcast that their parents told them if they were not a doctor or a lawyer, they were a failure.
I’m here to tell you, that you are not a failure. The only failure is to live your life according to someone else's roadmap. So whatever you are doing, if it isn’t fulfilling you - if it isn’t raising your vibe or your paycheck - it's a no.
Now, we all have to do things sometimes that serve as a means to an end. I get it.
But do not set out on a journey that is someone else's dream.
Take the time to answer the questions we covered earlier, and take the steps to live out your destiny by design.
This is your destiny. This is your dream. This is your decision.