Module One—Introduction

  • 1.1 – Why Life Planning?
  • 1.1 Activity: Introduction & Self-Assessment
  • 1.2 – What is Your Life Purpose?
  • 1.2 Activity: Life Purpose Statements

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Why Life Planning?

When we travel, most of us use a map to get around an unfamiliar city. A builder uses an architect’s blueprint, surgeons rely on x-rays, scans, & MRIs to pinpoint problems before a serious operation, and investors expect a detailed business plan from a new company. Many of us, though, live uncharted, unplanned lives. We take what comes or wistfully dream in vague terms.

For example, we think we’ll go to college and announce that as our “career goal.” Then we don’t have to identify specifically what we’re going to do with our lives. When the spouse does not appear, or disappears, or the children come and go, we may find ourselves entrenched in a holding pattern or otherwise unprepared for the rest of the journey of life. Many of us have set aside our dreams in the belief that we can’t really have what we want.

Course Objectives

This life-planning course encourages a kind of inventive writing and self-exploration that connects you with your deepest self and enhances clarity. Plan on about an half hour or so of investigative, inventive work for each activity. Through involvement in this course, you will—

  • Experiment with the process creative life planning and expand your perspective and options,
  • Explore principles of self-discovery, along with a variety of creative processes,
  • Engage in inventive personal and professional assessments and activities,
  • Revitalize hope and curiosity about the future,
  • Learn to recognize and trust your pattern for receiving insights.

“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.”
—Eleanor Roosevelt

The First Action Step

  1. Introduction and Self-Assessment

About the Author/Instructor

Karen W. Pool, M.S. presents workshops that encourage the development of creativity and imagination. Formerly a university administrator and teacher educator, Karen is President of lifemagination, a training and publishing companyFor more than two decades she has taught a Life Creation Process and encouraged individuals to invent their lives by creating a flexible 20-year plan. She is the author of Transformational Thinking, Celebrating Women’s Voices, and Designing Your Life Vision.

Karen writes, “My passion for engaging in Life Planning began several years ago as I examined personal assumptions that led me away from what I desired in life. When things didn’t work out, rather than place blame—which left me no better off—I started imagining how I would like my life to be, and writing to clarify my intentions and desires. Beginning with small shifts—noticing and reframing my negative thought patterns one by one—my life transformed from one in which I felt I had no control to one of empowerment. As insights appeared, I documented this process of searching, questioning, and experimenting with my thinking. It has led me to a place of deep joy and fulfillment.”

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