How Dreaming Up Your Ideal Day in 2026 Uncovers Goals Most True To You
Last week I talked about the power of weaving your connections and personal growth ambitions into something I call Team Goal Setting. Team Goal Setting is a life-changing process but only when we assume that you set the right goals in the first place. Setting goals are a scary and ambiguous process and often fall flat when a thoughtful process fails to be applied. In 2015, I finally found something that stuck and I am ecstatic to say it is still standing strong almost one quarter into 2016 - it starts with your ideal day 10 years from now.
How it works in a sentence is to force oneself to vividly visualize your ideal day in 2026 so you can extract all the life building blocks that support your day to become a reality. These goals are then cut up into sizeable chunks that you can start tackling today so that you know you are making strides towards climbing what seems like an impossible mountain. As you open up your mind and start to free write, you will be shocked with how much unconscious planning your heart has done without your mind even realizing it.
Are you ready to dig deep? Unplug from the present and bring out your favourite bottle of red wine or scotch because you are in for a mental journey of a lifetime.
What To Ask Yourself About Your Ideal Day
When I thought of my ideal day, I escaped from my body for 90 minutes and dreamed up the absolute most movie-like day. I didn’t have any limits and neither should you. Dream big and stitch together past life highlights to help you produce this epic day. Below are some of the questions you should ask yourself to piece it all together.
Where do you live? What day of the week is it?
Assuming you have done your fair bit of traveling, try and think what places have most made you come alive! Is it somewhere you could actually live? It might even be somewhere you only visit once a year, wherever your happy place is.
My day started by thinking about where I woke up, whom I woke up with, and what time I woke up. It was my birthday in beautiful Barcelona and I woke up in what appeared to be a beautiful summer home. It was early in the morning and it was a Saturday where I knew that no one else would be controlling my day with meetings or last-minute requests.
What is the first thing you do when you wake up?
How you start off your day is a big part of who you are. It will usually force you to think about what empowers you to get out of bed and seize the day. For many it will be exercise or some sort. It might be your passion for cooking, consuming some sort of media or going for a walk with someone you care about.
In my ideal day, I envision myself and an inspiring life partner getting up early and heading for a run into the mountains that overlook Barcelona - an area called Tibidabo. I remember going for a run there in 2010 and felt completely invigorated and also very lonely that I couldn't share it with anyone meaningful.
What things do you do on this day? Who are you sharing this day with? How do you treat yourself and others on this day?
This is the core of your day and should be a blend of some of your most memorable days to date combined with the things you daydream the most about or things you most want to escape. I like to think of what shared experiences make me happiest.
On my day, we did yoga after our run and then had a romantic brunch in a hidden restaurant that few people in the city knew about. I had a TEDxBarcelona speech lined up in the afternoon where I would fly my family and closest friends in to watch me share some of my latest professional and philanthropic breakthroughs. After a resounding standing ovation, we escape for a walk around the old city, popping into museums and hidden stores of all kinds. My late afternoon and early evening consisted of a beautiful boat ride along the coast with refreshments, a warm breeze, and just the best company of people I could ask for.
Dinner encompassed a gathering of incredible thinkers that joined our family and friends at our home - I have never cooked up such an epic feast of Mexican food and Spanish Tapas. We then pass the night clubbing on Barceloneta beach listening to Above & Beyond spin tunes until sunrise the next day. The last memory I have of the day is laying in the sand with my girlfriend, completely exhausted mentally and physically with only my ignited soul keeping my eyes from closing and letting this dream day end.
What are your commitments for the week ahead and how does that fall into who you are professionally and personally?
Of course, your dream day can't capture everything in your life but starting to think about how the week ahead sure does. Are you getting ready to present a big pitch to a big brand? Do you represent yourself or a company? Is there a triathlon you are nervous for are relieved you signed up for? Are you excited to see your daughters first acting appearance in the school play?
The next day, I take Sunday to finish up my latest novel and prepare for a hectic week of visiting my portfolio companies in South America and launching two charities I am incredibly passionate about. Running international companies, charities, and educating people around the world are just some of the professional highlights that gave me goose bumps. I am a little stressed with the triathlons and personal commitments that I have to balance with everything else but, I know in the end that I would pull through.
How Your Ideal Day Connects To Your 10-Year Goals
After reading about your ideal day for a couple times, you will start to get curious about how in the world you can actually make a day like that happen. For example, if I want to be giving TED talks I really need to be doing something interesting and be engaged in public speaking regularly. To do something interesting I need to make sure I am working a job that really aligns with an industry and type of person I am passionate about helping. Not to mention, I need to make sure I am making a sizeable income that allows me to travel freely and to be able to support other companies and charities other than my own.
As you start to question what building blocks are needed to support your seemingly unreachable life narrative, you’ll start to work backward and write down factual bullet points that convince you that that day is actually achievable. If you wrote about things that were not just professional endeavours, you’ll realize that health and personal lives are just as important to hone in on as the goals everyone likes to boast about in public. If you really put your heart into this exercise, working backwards into actionable goals you can start today will be a lot more motivating and fun.
The next step is for me to walk you through how to strip your ideal day into actual goals that you can start to rewind into your 5-year, 1-year, and even your upcoming 90-day goals. You are just in time to complete these 90-day goals as the second quarter of 2016 kicks off April 1st.