The Clarifying Your Lifetime Picture of Success Approach

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Everybody is different and everybody has different pictures of success.

What is your picture? Looking back on your life when you are 80, what for you will mean you have had a successful life?

The exercise invites you to start from your destination and define your overall life goals. People often cover three themes when doing this exercise.

They focus on building positive relationships, enjoying positive experiences and making a positive contribution to the world. Let’s explore these themes.

Positive Relationships

People often talk about how they want to be remembered as a parent, partner, friend or whatever. So a person may say, for example:

I want my partner and I to have given our children the opportunity to enjoy a happy childhood. For example, I want them to say things like:

“Our parents were always there for us. They encouraged us, helped us to develop our talents and also learn how to make good decisions.”

Positive Experiences

People often focus on how they want to enjoy life, pursue experiences and have no regrets. So a person may say something like:

I want to have lived life fully. For example, I want:

To have visited many countries.

To have completed the book I promised myself I would write.

To have made full use of my talents.

Positive Contribution

People often talk about wanting to make a positive contribution to the planet. This may involve them following their vocation or doing something that improves life for other people. So a person may something like:

I want to have used my talents to have done work that has helped other people. For example, I want:

To have

To have

To have

(Each person will obviously complete this part in their own way.)

You may prefer to clarify your life goals in another way. Whatever approach you take, clarifying these goals can act as a long-term compass.

You can consider these aims when making key decisions. When given the opportunity to take a new job, for example, you can ask yourself:

Will taking this step help me to achieve my longer-term picture of success?

Finally, it can also be useful to do one thing early each day towards achieving your life goals. This helps to provide a sense of meaning to the day. It also means you are doing something towards achieving your long-term picture of success.

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