foundations and goal maps

karen walrond leadership coach houston 180527foundation.jpg

Last Friday, Marcus came running into the room where I was working.

"I just got a text from Michael," he said, referring to a neighbour near our old home.  "He says that the dump trucks are here, and they're pouring our foundation.  Wanna go take a look?"

Did I ever.

I dropped everything, and we got in the car and drove the mile or so to our land, to discover 8 cement trucks blocking our street while a man with a joystick guided a giant hose over the foundation frame, and shot concrete into the ground.  As the concrete was poured, in several other men were spreading and smoothing it, so that the foundation was nice and even.

(An aside:  It must have been 95 degrees that day.  Whatever those men are paid, it is nowhere near enough -- that is some arduous and back-breaking work they were doing.)

As Marcus and I stood there and watched our foundation come into shape, I felt a surge of happiness.  I mean, I know it's just a slab in the ground, but it was also actual physical evidence that our home would one day exist.  It was tangible progress.  And although it's just the very beginning, it's also what everything else -- not just the structure, but the home we'll make of it, as well -- is literally based on.

Friday was a very good day.

karen walrond leadership coach houston 180527goalmap.jpg

A couple of weeks ago, I mentioned on Instagram that I would be discussion goal maps with a coaching client, a tool that I've found very helpful in charting out my own goals.  Several folks mentioned that they'd love to know more, and while I'll probably spend some time talking about goal maps in a future post, I wanted to share the framework of how a one might look (shown above), and also talk about my favourite part of making one: the blue box in the lower left-hand corner of the map, entitled "in place."

Because here's the thing:  while writing out my goals are fun, and coming up with the steps to get there is a great challenge, one of the most empowering tasks in creating a goal map is sitting down and detailing what you already have -- the resources, skills, and experiences -- that have already propelled you toward your goal.  It creates the foundation for your future hard work.  And it's a wonderful exercise in discovering how far along you already are on your journey.

Here's an example:  say you've always loved guitar, you took lessons as a child, and it's always been a hobby while you worked your bank teller job, but your dream is to actually be a paid performer, working full-time as a musician.  And you'd like to accomplish your goal, quitting your job making even more as a musician, in two years.  

So before you map out the steps in earnest, one of the first things you would do is list all the things that you already have "in place." 

  • You took lessons as a child, so that would be one of the first things on your list. 
  • You've continued to play, so the fact that you have a regular practice already in place would make the list. 
  • Perhaps you know a teacher in town who could help you sharpen your skills -- she would go on the list.
  • Maybe when you were younger, you performed in some concerts -- so you already have experience performing, and know what performing feels like.  This goes on the list.
  • Maybe you know the owner of your favourite coffeehouse -- and perhaps she'd let you audition, and be happy to let you play on Sunday mornings for a nominal fee while things pick up  -- that would go on the list.
  • Maybe you have a friend who is already a working musician, who would be happy to let you by him coffee, in exchange for letting you know all the ins and outs of starting a business as a working musician.  His friendship is a great resource, so he would go on the list.

And so on and so forth.  The beauty of creating this list is that it becomes the foundation upon which you'll build your path towards achieving that goal.  But even better:  it becomes actual, physical evidence that one day your goal could exist.  And it's proof positive to yourself that you have the skills, resources and the experience to make your goal happen.

Nothing like a strong foundation, right?

I've mentioned that I've been working my own goal map, and part of that goal has been to incorporate a one-on-one coaching practice, in addition to my speaking practice.  I'm thrilled to say that I'm officially open for business:  please check out my updated coaching page, as well as my fees page (which details the packages that I offer), to find out more!  I'd love to work with you to help you make your dreams happen.

(Also, don't forget that GLOW, my online journaling course, will only be available for three more days, and then it'll be gone forever -- enter FADEOUT at checkout to receive 40% off the registration fee.  More online courses are coming, on a brand-new platform, that I'm really excited to share with you.  Stay tuned!)


Soundtrack:  Feelin' good (Joe Claussell Remix)