8 Steps to Changing Yourself: Part 3

Number 3 in this series of posts on making successful personal change! We’re taking John Kotter’s 8 steps as our template and today we’re looking at developing a vision and a strategy.

If you’ve followed steps one and two you will have already done a creative visualisation and made a list of your helpful inner circle folk, those who will support you through this process. Now it’s about articulating the vision for change. It’s as important for you as well as your supporters to fully understand what it is you’re trying to do. What being successful means to you.

There are various ways of doing this but one I am particularly fond of is trying out a mood board, or a ‘drawing’ . Try not to use words at all but express yourself on paper describing what it is you want from life or as a result of this change you are embarking upon. You can check this out for a longer explanation. Mood boards will be a delight to those of you who love doing ‘crafty type’ things. Putting together a career or change mood board will help you begin to visualise more clearly what you like and don’t like and where you want to be headed. It will help you develop your vision.

A Word on Mood Boards

The idea of mood boards originated with interior designers to help them get a sense of what their clients were looking for when redecorating or remodelling their homes. People want a new look but don’t always know what new look they want. This makes life a bit tricky for the designer…

Without mood boards, designers can’t be sure that they understand exactly what their clients want. And, as importantly, the putting together of the mood board helps their clients understand better what they want too and helps with all the choices they make pulling their ‘look’ together..

Once clients try out for themselves the vibrant pink they loved with the azure blue they saw on holiday in Morocco, they sometimes realise this isn’t what they want at all. Or they see that this is a great combination but not right for now. The actual making of the mood board stimulates their imaginations and helps them to be clearer about what they want and so helps them achieve the desired outcome without too many errors along the way.

I think you can see where I’m going with this…

In brief, mood boards are basically collages of items such as photographs, sketches, clippings, swatches of materials, magazine clippings, and so on. You could create a much larger one to hang on your wall and adapt and add to it as you work through the book. Simply get a large notice board and cover it with your inspirational things, or maybe buy a box frame that you can fill as you wish.

Once you have created your mood board or drawing (or even a list if that’s more your style) it is hugely helpful if you can describe it to a friend, one of your supporters or folk you identified in stage 2. If at all possible ask them to look at the following list of questions and ask them of you. If you’re doing this on your own, try answering them for yourself:

What does the picture ‘say’?

What are the risks  in doing this?

What might be the problems  encountered?

How could they be overcome?

Will achieving this affect anyone else?

Who will support them/you?

Who might not want them/you to succeed?

What is in it for them/you personally to succeed?

How will they/you know they have succeeded?

What skills and knowledge do they have/you in order to achieve these goals?

Do they/you need to think about acquiring other skills and/or experience?

How important is this to them/you?

How soon does it need to happen?

And from this you will begin to create your plan. Start small, with tasks such as ‘what can I be doing in next week to make this a reality, then the next month’, and increase your aims until you have a plan of where you want to go and a strategy for achieving it.

Next post – Communicating the vision!

Part 4 is here.

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Posted on October 17th, 2012 by

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