How You Fill In This Picture Shows Your Life

Jim Woods

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Photo by Naturewise (Creative Commons)

In this diagram each portion represents a specific area of your life.

Your life might not have seven parts to it right now, and that’s completely fine. In a perfect world, your life’s activities would include doing something in each of the seven areas. But let’s face it: if you want to start a business, going to parties is probably not very high on your to-do list.

This exercise is important to help you determine what area to set your goal in. And what you do in one area of your life impacts the others. For example, if you aren’t healthy physically, it is hard to have intellectual growth and spiritual growth when you are sick or often tired.

Action Step: Draw your own wheel, and give each segment a number between 1 and 10 (1 being unsatisfied; 10 being completely satisfied). Take no more than 10 minutes to do this. Use a timer if necessary.

Example

Career — 5

Financial — 8

Spiritual — 7

Physical — 2

Intellectual — 6

Family — 3

Social — 9

Looking Closer at the Wheel of Your Life

Refer to your “wheel of your life” diagram you drew. Congratulations! Just by completing this exercise, you have done something the majority of people never do!

Let’s examine the wheel you made. Why did you give those scores? What feels most out of balance on your wheel? If this challenge feels overwhelming, feel free to focus on just one area of the wheel, or take some extra time for this exercise.

Action Step: Look at your results and dig deeper by writing out specifically what you are doing (or not doing) in each area.

Example

Career — just received promotion but not very satisfied

Financial — sticking to budget and saving more

Spiritual — ushering at church, daily devotion and meditation, and weekly Bible study

Physical — not working out, eating junk food

Intellectual — reading a book a month

Family — quality time with kids but very little quality time with spouse

Social — parties, gatherings at church, meeting friends for dinner

Now let's reflect on what you have. What needs to change?

This picture is a great tool to analyze your life, but keep in mind that it is impossible to change all aspects of your life at the same time.

“Pick the one thing that’s going to make the biggest difference. Focus on the one area that feels like it’s dragging all the other areas down. As you come up with all these other ideas of things that you want to change, write them down and keep a running list and once you’ve implemented that one thing, and it’s become a habit, it just happens without you thinking about it, then add in the next one, and make that a habit. Slow and steady, instead of trying to do everything at once.” Crystal Paine

Let’s narrow things down. You probably know what you want to change, but let’s bring it to the forefront of your mind.

Action Step: Look at the two categories with the lowest numbers in your wheel. What would success look like for each those areas? Now write down what it would take to change the score in each area from your current number to a 10.

Example

Physical had score of 2. Success = optimal weight, lower cholesterol, having more energy, not feeling tired all of the time

Family had score of 3. Success = more attention on spouse; intimacy, good communication, time together on dates

Is it possible there is a common thread between the two categories that had low numbers?

In the example above, just having more energy and feeling better will very likely help increase communication and intimacy with your spouse. If you physically don’t feel well, you find it much easier to veg out on the couch and watch TV than to engage in conversation.

What would the above photo look like if you filled it out?

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