Meaning and Purpose: Your Personal Vision Statement
“Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms — to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.” Viktor Frankl
This s the final part of a five- part series of blogs about what is meant by finding a sense of meaning and purpose in one’s life. The first article looked at the importance of finding ways to uncover a sense of awe, perhaps through experiencing nature both first hand or by watching videos and how research has shown that a sense of awe can make us feel more connected to others and make us behave more benevolently towards others. The second article looked at the work of Viktor Frankl who was able to find meaning even in the misery and brutality of a WW2 concentration camp.
The third and fourth articles showed you how to write your own Mission Statement, a simple process that can help you to discover your true mission and purpose in life, based on an exercise contained in the book Forward focussed Trauma therapy by Eric Gentry. If you haven’t competed the first part of this exercise, click here:
So ,going back to your previous writings, again take some time out for yourself, make a cup of tea and settle down with paper and pen.
Your Personal Vision Statement
This will be the outcome and payoff of your efforts to heal and grow. When you fulfil your mission what will have changed in your life? Who will you be? What will you be doing personally, professionally, and spiritually? Make what you imagine be vivid and compelling so that it will energise you throughout the arduous process of practicing ongoing self-regulation and intentionality in your daily life.
Try this exercise: Close your eyes and imagine yourself at your retirement party listening to the other guests making speeches about you. What is each one saying? What qualities and accomplishments are they praising you for? Write 2-5 sentences, in the present tense so write “ I am financially secure” NOT “I will be…” and use broad objectives, don’t be too specific. Write in the first person – “I am…” Keep it compelling enough to really motivate you. Be bold!! Have fun!
Your Code of Honour
These are your fundamental moral and ethical principles that will guide your behaviour from this point forward. What constitutes the right action according to your vision and mission statement? This will give you some clear guidelines for when there are a choice of options:
Start by choosing 10-12 words from the following list that most represent your moral and ethical convictions. Then write a declarative sentence for each one that states your aspiration to abide by these rules without fail. Eg honesty: “I am always honest with myself and others.”
A leader Active Approach vs Avoidance Assertive Challenging Commitment Compassionate Conservative Courageous Creative Detailed Effective Efficient Ethical Facilitative Faithful
Farsighted Fearless Frugal Greedy Honest Hopeful Humorous Joyful Just Liberal Loving Moderate
Optimistic Outspoken Parenting Passionate Peaceable Powerful Productive Resilient Responsible Scientific Secure Self confident
Service Strong Tolerant Truthful
This completes your Navigation Map. Put it somewhere safe and as the year goes by, refer to it from time to time and possibly make some adjustments. Are you still living by your Mission and Vision Statements?
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Need some advice and support?
If you are struggling with an issue in your life at the moment and would like to talk it over in complete confidentiality, call Alison Winfield, Mindfully Well Counselling Cork on 087 9934541.