Why You Need a Vision

featureThat’s what goals are for.

Are you confused about the difference?  A big vision is the starting point for change.  A big vision give us something to reach for. Hint:  If it’s something that feels just enough beyond your reach that it’s a tad scary, it’s a sign that you’re on the right track.

Goals ground us in the practical, in what specific parts of our vision will look like in real time, real life, in our real life. A big vision without goals is like dreaming of cooking the best meal ever without deciding what will be on the menu. It would be the folks at NASA imagining a man on the moon and leaving it at that. However, goals that don’t come out of a big vision exist in a type of limbo, purpose-less, limited, and therefore much harder to act on with authentic enthusiasm.

Why have a big vision anyway?

Humans won’t create something we can’t imagine. We’re designed that way.

We’re actually using aspects of visioning all the time. When we go shopping we may have an idea  – not always fully formed – of what we want. The feeling of, “I’ll know it when I see it,” tells us we trust visioning, that we know a real item can get very close to matching this unclear picture we already have. Or you may say, ” I want a bladdedy bah coat with boop bap beep on it, in cocoa brown,” giving rise to a picture of your coat while you describe it. That image may even look like something you’ve seen already, but not quite.  For some of us, this happens so quickly or under the surface that we hardly notice it while others use this function of our brain more consciously, more easily, more often.

If visioning is done well, it taps into our subconscious, into our emotions, our values – the roots of our drive and motivation. A big vision galvanizes us. We’re energized and alert.

Conjuring an image is one aspect of visioning, but not the whole enchilada (did you picture an enchilada when you read that?). A big vision needs to tap into meaning for us, and that usually translates to us seeing how what we want benefits someone else, or something larger than ourselves. Somehow connecting our personal agenda with  “the better angels of our nature” grows passion, which is another word for drive. With a fully fleshed out vision, the urge to go forward increases exponentially.

After that, come the goals.

Visioning answers the questions What if ? and Why? Goals answer the questions, What? and When?

What’s easiest for you, visioning or setting goals?

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5 Reasons I No longer Mind Being Called “Coach”

When I first heard about life coaching, the most persistent association I had to the word “coach” was Mr. Lawson, our elementary school gym teacher. He scared me. An ex-marine still sporting the jar-head haircut, whistle around his neck, he patrolled the halls bellowing orders. He called all the girls “toots,” which even at 8, I knew wasn’t a complement. Coach. Me? Ew- no.

Even after getting trained and certified as a Life & Career Coach,  I still resisted the title.  I wracked my brain for a better one: life midwife, supporter,  partner, friend with life benefits, guide, trail master, Sherpa,… none of them had quite the right meaning.

Recently, I noticed that the word coach doesn’t feel quite so inaccurate. Obviously, I say it a lot more since my training days, but more importantly, as I practice coaching the way I imagine it can be, the less I care about the name.

Here are 5 Reasons I love what I do and no longer mind being called “coach” – – most of the time.

1.     I meet great people. Interesting people with lifestyles, careers, histories, interests and desires, all fascinating to me. People I would  never have met otherwise. And, most of them wouldn’t describe themselves the way I just did.

2.     People (that are also clients) accomplish things they’ve always wanted like.

  • Paint again after a creative block
  • Find a career that matches their passion, skills & financial needs
  • Finish a dissertation on hold for over 30 years
  • Create a peaceful family life
  • Quit smoking
  • Create new satisfying & effective relationships with co-workers and superiors

3.     And, they say things like this:

  • “I did it!”
  • “It makes a huge difference to talk to you – you’re the only person that isn’t going to judge anything that comes out of my mouth, judge the people I’m talking about or tell me what I should do. I can find the solutions better when you are listening and asking questions.”
  • “The best money I ever spent!”

4.     I get to be creative too! Finding new ways to apply the skills I gathered from my varied careers & interests, with clients, every day, is beyond satisfying.

5.     Doing the other stuff, the “businessy” stuff that being a coach requires puts me in the same position as many of my clients; taking risks; practicing what I know will support me while I manage the unknown; dealing with inner criticism and worry. I have a chance to walk my talk. Every day.

6.     I know I said there’d be 5, but this one is important. People vary and people can change. So each change, and the process of that change, varies for each person too.  Clients let me parachute into their lives and help them figure this out. It’s the best.

Though I’m holding out for that day when a better name for what I do finds me (feel free to post your suggestions), I describe my career as a life, learning & career coach.

Image  Judy

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