We are all FutureSurfers, surfing into the future with a backpack full of strengths and passions.

How to create a vision for your future

This week I was at Dubai British School with the wonderful teenage coach Banan Hadidi running workshops for Year 10 students who had recently completed two weeks of Work Experience. We talked about how companies generally have a vision statement and how it should be something motivating and inspiring. Then Banan invited them on a journey, to travel along their timeline, into the past, back to the present, then into the future.

An exercise like this can be difficult, especially the first time around. Some students found it ‘weird’ or ‘didn’t see anything’, but others were ‘inspired’. Everyone wrote down some ideas about their ‘dream job’. Some students identified more than one dream job, others struggled to think of anything they would enjoy at work. Our challenge was to ask smart coaching questions to help the thinking process along! Here are some of the questions we tried:

  • If you could turn your hobby into a job, what would that be?
  • If you were a millionaire and didn’t need to work, what would you do every day?
  • What are you interested in?
  • What do you know you don’t want to do at work?
  • What’s important to you?

A couple of students wanted to be professional footballers. Some might say they are ‘unrealistic’, but we don’t believe in judging somebody else’s dreams. After all, some peoples’ ideas that seemed pretty crazy at the time, were turned into reality – putting a man on the moon for example. What we do suggest is that it’s a good idea to think about a Plan B too. If you’re not convinced, go watch Amy Purdy talk about how her life was transformed as a teenager.


Dubai is the result of an amazing vision, and continues to evolve…

Then we had fun with a mingle, where everyone gets to try on dream careers like new clothes… walking around the room and introducing themselves as their dream job. This is one of the perks of my job – I get to play too! I highly recommend it. Dream a little and share your dream with someone. Just remember to start “I am…” and not “I would like to…” or “I wish I could…”. Try it and let me know how it goes. For two days I played “I am a motivational speaker visiting schools around the world.” Having shared it with several people, I can tell you that it already seems a lot more possible than it did before! I found that keeping it playful, knowing that next time around I could try another dream on for size, was very freeing.

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