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Life line chart

Drawing a life line chart

A simple and powerful way to review your current situation and reflect on the future is to draw what is called a career or life line. This is an intuitive process based on your own reflections and experiences that starts you looking at where you have been and what has worked and perhaps not worked so well for you. All you have to do is draw a line which reflects your life or career to date on the diagram illustrated below.

Anything above the line is a positive experience and below the line is regarded as a negative event. The height and depth of any points reflect your degree of delight or unhappiness with the event.

Begin the process by mapping out the big events in your life (school, sporting, academic success or failure, college, graduation, first jobs, marriage, children, divorce, career change, redundancy, promotion, birth, death of close ones etc).

Remember to leave space to fill in other events as certain experiences will trigger others.

Drawing your life line and reviewing these questions will help you to focus on the priorities to include in your Personal Brand Plan.

Once you have drawn your line reflect on the events and ask yourself some of the following questions. Using different signs to mark the events as you rate them:

  • Which were the big positive experiences for me? Why were they so influential?
  • What were the big lows? Why?
  • From which experiences did I learn most?
  • Where did I feel best suited and fulfilled?
  • Where was I most under pressure or stressed?
  • Where did I have most or least control? How did I feel about that?

Then consider the major themes that emerge from your life and career to date:

Ask yourself what are the common themes about the way you do things and the roles you seek out.

  • What do you seem to value or prize most?
  • What do you not like doing?

Have you engineered these changes yourself or have they happened by chance?

How much did luck play in your success?

Then consider your future:

  • Where do you see yourself going in the future?
  • What do you want to achieve?
  • What would be your preferred role and personal circumstances?

How is what you are doing today helping you to achieve what you really want?

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