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Write Your Next Chapter

By Patricia G Omoqui
It’s time to get your creative juices flowing.  The past two weeks we looked at the importance of forgiving past hurts and heartaches.  This week I’d like us to return our focus to what we WANT to experience.  For those of you who have been reading my articles, this may sound familiar.  It is.  I return to this topic because we all know the importance of these ideas but few actually take time to apply them.

I offer you this week another wonderful opportunity to harness the power of your heart and mind.  Daydreaming and imagining are two tools I am going to ask you to pull out as we consider what you, the author of your book of life, will write next.

Many of my life coaching clients find it helpful to view their lives as a book with many chapters.  Some chapters might represent years; others might be shorter, only 3 to 6 months.  As my life coaching clients and I journey together through weekly sessions, I help them write (or draw) a detailed picture of who they want to be, what they want to do and most importantly, how they would like to feel as they create the next chapter of their lives.   Choose a medium that fits your style.  A vision board is a good option for those of you who don’t like to write or draw.  Simply use magazine or newspaper to use words or pictures that represent your dreams.  Glue them on a piece of poster board or cardboard and you’ve made yourself a vision board.

Life moves quickly.  Weeks, months and years seem to disappear while we work our way through our daily routines, letting the next person, activity, thought or feeling who clamors for our attention dictate how we spend our time.  This happens because we haven’t consciously set our aim.  It’s as if we are out on the river of life throwing a rope to people in other boats and letting them pull us along rather than getting out our oars and guiding our own boat for ourselves.
I invite you to cut the ropes and get out your oars.  As you start this creative process, I’d ask you to follow the following two guidelines:

1. Throw out all rules.  Yes, I ask that there be no rules.  Think outside the box.  Let your heart, mind, body and spirit fly.  Don’t listen to the voice of self-limitation or fear as it whispers to you, “This is silly.  I can’t change my life.” Anything is possible.  Yes, absolutely anything is possible if you open to it.   Don’t allow yourself to shut down your dreams before you even give them a chance to bubble up.  If you are going to stop yourself, at least take a good look at the possibilities before you close them down.

2. Put aside preconceived notions of who you are.  Who you were yesterday doesn’t predict who you are today—unless, of course, you allow it to.  You can reinvent and reconfigure yourself every day.  People around you may have told you that you don’t have particular gifts and talents.  Don’t listen.  You can try anything.  You can experiment and have fun putting your best effort towards developing yourself in ways you may never have thought possible.

These NO RULE, NO LIMIT guidelines are just to say let go of the “shoulds, musts and have-to’s.  Be completely free as you do this exercise.
Below are some questions to help you start the masterpiece of your next chapter.  Hopefully they will stimulate you to generate a broad view of the directions you want to go.

Relationships

What kinds of friends do you desire?

What types of things do you see yourself doing with your friends?

How often do you hang out?

Can you see a longstanding conflict with a friend or family member coming to a peaceful conclusion?
What kind of love relationship do you want to experience?

How would you envision a girlfriend / boyfriend treating you?

What traits do you want in your next romance?

(List these in as much detail as you can.)

Fun / Personal Development & Enjoyment
What would you do for fun?
Do you travel somewhere new?
What subjects do you want to learn about?
What might you dare to do that you never thought feasible before?

Health
How would you like to feel physically each day when you wake up?

Will you get more active and physically fit?
Will you make progress in shifting your eating habits to nurture your body?
Would you take the time to visit the doctor and resolve a health issue that has been nagging at you?
What type of body do you see yourself creating?

Finances

How will you use your money?
Will you share it with others?
Is your bank account balance growing?
Does money flow to you easily?  Does it arrive in unexpected, miraculous ways?
Can you pictures yourself being bombarded with business deals and opportunities?

Career / Life Work

Is there a career change in your picture?
How many days each week do you see yourself working?  How many hours per week?
What type of people would you like to work with?
Will you take work home with you or leave it at work?
What new flexibility will you build into your schedule?
Can you imagine working on tasks and projects that generate new enthusiasm?
Picture what makes your heart sing.   If you aren’t clear on this, just relax your mind and ask the Universe to help you clarify it as you play with these questions.  What you craft should come from the deepest part of your heart and spirit rather than from your mind alone.

If you can’t get to a point where you are able to believe that what you write for your next chapter will come true, then just pretend your chapter is fiction and write it anyway.  This exercise is designed to expand your horizons and to get you consciously thinking about your life’s masterpiece in detail.
Last but not least, what is the title of your next chapter?  Is it “New Horizons” or “Venturing into New Territory” or “Quickly Progressing” or “Finding New Love” or “Adventure of a Lifetime” …”Soaring Higher” or “The Big Win” or “Taking a Leap of Faith” or “Loving deeply?”

Your assignment this week is to take an hour to do this exercise.  Get a blank piece of paper and take the time to playfully draft your next chapter.   Or sit in a chair and clear your mind so you can at least paint a picture in your mind.  Feel excited as you consider the beauty, joy, and hope of what you can create.

Remember, consciously or unconsciously you are authoring your book of life.

Food For Thought

Wake up each day
Knowing your page is blank.
Imagine your story unfolding.
See it in vivid detail.
You will be surprised, amazed—
Your story can be written as you consciously intend it to.
Take time to write your story
Just as you want it to be.
The moments you take to determine your story
Are worth the effort.
What you write, is what you live.


Disclaimer

Comments expressed here do not reflect the opinions of vanguard newspapers or any employee thereof.