Last week we read some tips for how to specify your vision for a better world, such as it must be positive and very specific. This week we are learning how to identify and clarify the solution.
Step 1 Imagine your better world; choose a vision.
Next, the solution must be at least a small step toward your desired vision for the future (in this illustration the star is the desired future). It does not matter if it is one step or a long way down the road toward your goal. It also does not matter if your goal is for you personally, your family, an organisation or the entire globe!
Step 2: Solution: What can you do today, this week or this month toward your vision?
SMART goals: Your goal must be SMART.
S – Specific
The goal must be easily identifiable and close up in focus, that is not too general or broad.
M – Measurable
In the above illustration, the smiley face is the starting point, say at point ‘0’ and ‘10’ is achieving the goal which is represented by the star. Even if we take a vision of peace in general with a peaceful household as the specific vision, then the goal must be able to be measured on the scale of one to ten within the given time-frame.
A – Achievable
Quite often when we are inspired we set unrealistic goals. If your goal is to make the world a happier place and yet you don’t usually smile at others, then a realistic goal may be to smile at someone at least once per day.
R – Realistic
The vision must be real, something that you can connect emotionally to and commit to, as well as agree to be held accountable. If it is not, you have chosen the wrong goal. NO problems, choose a new one.
T – Timely
To be able to measure effectively, there needs to be a timeframe given. For any habit to develop, it needs to be a minimum of 21 days. So, I usually suggest your accountability partner contact you two to three weeks after your commitment to check in and help keep you on track.
Begin with your world
Take world peace. If we consider world peace as a desired vision, we soon come to realise that depending on our sphere of influence, that huge goal would be too broad. Our own sphere of influence may be very small relatively, so our world peace is about how to make our own world more peaceful. This could be applied to the home, workplace or perhaps a group or organisation you are involved with.
Individual Example 1
Teenage girl – Vision is a peaceful home.
Solution to be more respectful to her dad (he is the single parent). Her specific strategy was to count to ten before answering back, especially if she was feeling emotional.
Individual Example 2
Husband – Vision – more peace in his marriage
Solution: He committed to searching for a book on relationship skills then at least having read the first three chapters in the next three weeks.
Corporate example 1
Vision – provide emergency and medium-term relief following a natural disaster
Solution – to identify, arrange and send urgent goods needed – clothes, food, and money for education and health. The specific goal was to create an action plan, then allocate members of the group to be in charge of following up on his/her aspect of the overall goal.
They committed to be in monthly contact for a year to ensure follow through.
Corporate example 2
Group of older teenage young ladies (who grew up in very poor circumstances or orphanages and were then living and studying as part of a program to end the cycle of poverty for women)
Vision – to ensure safety of team members
Solution – in pairs, travel to and from work together, especially for afternoon shifts, plus contact their residential college to see if they could arrange for self-defence training.
Corporate example 3
High school students (high school preparation for international students)
Vision – good government (changed from stop corruption in the government)
a) become good citizens themselves starting with their current jobs as students so choosing to study hard and respect parents, including not answering back but having respectful conversations
b) Research not for profit agencies to see who has realistic and sustainable programs to promote good governance
Corporate example 4
Adult business students
Vision – general – to overcome systemic poverty in their country
Solution – multipronged approach to increasing financial intelligence, focusing on thriftiness, stewardship and resourcefulness.
Specific goal: to continue learning about financial intelligence, including emotional intelligence, in the next three weeks such as watching a video online on these topics minimum one per week.
For any individual or corporate goal or vision, there may be hundreds or even thousands of solutions. You choose what is right for you and/or your group.
Together, we CAN imagineer a better world!