This week the blog was written by Jennifer Goodwill, Community Broker for The Arcadia Institute. Recently, I had the opportunity to facilitate a Future Planning Meeting for a woman named Sharon. Along with my colleagues at The Arcadia Institute, and Sharon’s Supports Coordinator, we gathered together to listen to Sharon talk about her goals for her future , and we spent time developing action steps to move her toward her future interests. As part of the process, we talked about Sharon’s strengths and skills. An important strength that Sharon possesses is her ability to have a vision for her future. Sharon is able to visualize where she wants to go and what she wants to do. Even though her circumstances right now are not easy, she knows that there are possibilities ahead for her that will bring her the happiness, comfort and security she so strongly desires. And , very importantly, she is able to keep that vision strong in her mind as she faces the uncertainty of change and the challenges of working toward her goals.
Having vision is a leadership skill that does not come easily to all people. Having vision means seeing beyond your current situation. It means having high expectations and believing that the future you imagine is achievable. Having vision is about movement. You don’t allow yourself to stay stuck with where you are right now. You start taking steps that will move you toward where you want to be. The key is to not give up and to keep your goals at the forefront. Just because you run into challenges or have set backs, doesn’t mean you should give up on your picture for the future.
During the Future Planning Meeting with Sharon, we talked about the fears and difficulties she will have to work through to get from where she is today to where she wants to be six months from now. We encouraged her to hold strong to her vision of her future and to keep moving ahead. Just because she knows where she wants to be doesn’t mean the path ahead is going to be an easy one. But, as we told Sharon, with her ability to visualize the future she wants, and her willingness to do the work that needs to be done, we believe she is going to accomplish her goals. Sharon is a strong woman and we can’t wait to see where she is six months from now.