Christopher Westra, Creator of the
Objective: See in your mind's eye where you really want to be in ten years time. Choose your own values, activities, and relationships rather than copying others.
this exercise that Ive done with thousands of people to learn what
you really want in life. This is your chance to dream and create in your
imagination anything you want to do or be!
While working with troubled teens, I used to have them do a Ten Years in the Future exercise. I asked them to write a letter to a friend as if it was ten years in the future. Most of these boys and girls didn't think about the next week, much less ten years to come. Like the Cheshire cat says in Alice in Wonderland, "If you don't know where you want to go, then it doesn't really matter what road you take!"
Of course, this lack of "foresight" was a major reason their lives were pretty messed up. We had some great conversations as they really thought about what they wanted. For most of them, this was the first time they had ever thought this way!
But the real story is what happened to me. I did the exercise right along with them on many occasions, writing my dreams and visions in detail. In my letter to a friend, I had moved to the country, built my own home, become a black belt in the martial arts, authored a book, and started my own business working from home.
next ten years, something magic happened. All my dreams and visions became
a reality, almost as if orchestrated by an unseen hand. I realized that
something very powerful was happening, more powerful than I realized initially.
I did write books and start my business. We did move to the country and
I did build my own home.
This letter to a friend will become a magnetic factor in your life, even if you write it once and then file it away. Your vision will guide you in your yearly goals, your monthly goals, and your daily activities.
You must write your letter as if it has already happened. For example:
"Dear Bob, so much has happened in the last ten years. Rachel and I have moved to Australia and live on a 2000 acre ranch."
"Leslie, I just wanted to make contact again and tell you about my life. I started my own gardening business in 2012 and it's really taken off."
"Dear Harold, I met the love of my life in 2016 and we moved to Hawaii where Frank works in a bookstore and I give surfing lessons everyday. We love it."
describe all the details as if they have already happened.
Include where in the world you live, how you earn your living, and your primary relationships. Add lots of names and details. Get creative.
Write about your hobbies and your real passions and interests. How do you give back to the community and the world? What do you read? What do you drive and where do you travel on your vacations?
You can write about your daily schedule and activities, your gardens, your office, or whatever is really important to you.
Make your letter at least one page long and write it to a real person who you think you may still know in ten years. This will help make it more real for you.
After I learned
the power of this exercise, I wrote up an 11 page document that has guided
my life in the past few years. One page is good, unless you really want
to expand and write more.
To get your creative mind flowing, include some future inventions or world changes in your letter. I had the teens do this also and we had fun with it. You can include possible political changes, new technology, social changes, and much more.
Sit down and write (or type) your Ten Years in the Future letter today.