Dr Games outlines six steps to bring life crafting into your life:
Step 1 – Permission to dream the dream: Start by giving yourself permission to dream the dream. Focus on the ‘what’, not the ‘how’. We so rarely have the opportunity to sit in the space of asking, what is it that I want for myself? We’re so busy as women looking after everybody else – and, let’s be honest, in many cases, just getting through the day – that this is your opportunity to simply dream the dream. You can work out the roadmap later but for now, sit in the dream space.
Step 2 – Create clarity: Start to play with finding clarity on what you want and, as importantly, what you don’t want. I invite you to do this exercise – write down the things that are most important to you in your life, and also write freely about the things you would like to have in your life.
Once you’ve got this on paper, you have an opportunity to sift and sort until you have some clarity about the things that are most important. Go with your instinct. As you go through this stream-of-consciousness exercise, you will get a hit of butterflies in your stomach or excitement in your chest, maybe a sense of nervousness and that’s okay. That is a guide that you’re considering something that is important or exciting to you.
Step 3 – Consider these questions:
If you could have anything in the world right now, what would you ask for?
If you could give up one thing that was weighing you down, what would it be?
What gives you positive energy?
What detracts from your energy?
What are the values that you hold most sacred?
If you followed the joy in your career and your life, where would it lead you?
What is your definition of success?
What is your greatest dream for your work?
What is your greatest dream for your life?
What does your ideal day look like?
Step 4 – Emotionally fuel the vision: Pick one thing on your list that you would like to bring into your life and start to emotionally fuel that vision. Let’s say it’s balance that you really want to create. Ask yourself as you go through this, what would balance look like in your life? How would you live your day? What are the elements that would be present that would make you feel like you were living in balance and sit with that and how that would feel in your body.
Start to bring the emotion into it so that it’s not just an exercise on paper, but that you’re really feeling it. This question of how you want to feel is something I would encourage you to put on a post-it note or as an alert on your phone so you see it frequently.
Step 5 – Get creative: This is where you get to have some fun. We know from positive psychology and neuroscience that positive images pull us forward. That’s why you hear so many people talking about the power of visualisation. It’s time to create a visual representation of your vision and the core elements that you have written down. You can use a journal, an online tool like Pinterest or Canva, or my personal favourite, a vision board.
Start visually creating this life that you want to live. It doesn’t need to make sense to anybody else. This is your vision. It doesn’t need to be literal. You could have a piece of fabric or a flower on your vision board. You could have just one word that means something to you that’s going to help pull you into the future that you want to create for yourself. Have fun with this and remember that you can build it over time.
Step 6 – Start bringing your vision to life: Now that you have more clarity, pick one thing from your vision list and find a small way to bring it into your life each day for one week. For example, if it’s balance you’re looking for, tweak your schedule to free up some 10-minute blocks for restoration, to bring yourself back to yourself and back to that sense of balance.
Now notice here that I’ve said pick one thing, because we often feel like we need to change our whole life in a minute. And not only is it not possible but it’s way too much pressure. So pick one thing and start to bring that in for a week. And then you can start to add other things in.
You get to set the pace here. You don’t need to take any massive leaps and you don’t need to change your life in a week. Go gently. Do this with ease and bring in the grace. All things are possible with intention and clarity. Poet Mary Oliver asked, “Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?”