Alice: Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?
Cheshire Cat: That depends a good deal on where you want to get to.
Alice: I don’t much care where-
Cheshire Cat: Then it doesn’t matter which way you go.
-Lewis Carrol, Alice in Wonderland
Do you ever feel like Alice in Wonderland? Like you want to get somewhere, but you’re not quite sure where? For survivors of childhood sexual abuse, it can feel overwhelming to focus on more than today. But as you find your true self and reclaim hope through your healing journey, you’ll want to start living your life in a more proactive way, allowing you to thrive, instead of just surviving in a reactive way.
Without a goal or vision it’s hard to have direction. We’ve come up with a simple, but thought-provoking, way to envision your future positively and write it down to document it. Dream big. This is your one and only life, so make it amazing!
Take a little time to close your eyes and imagine what you want your future to look like. See it as if you’ve already achieved all your dreams. Imagine everything, even the smallest details. Don’t let that inner critic tell you it’s impossible or out of your reach or that you’re not good enough.
Now, while you can still see that vision clearly in your mind, write down what it looks like. State it in the present tense, as if it’s already a reality. Don’t say, “Someday I want to be a world-class chef,” write down, “I’m a world-class chef at a 5-star restaurant.” Stating it in the present tense connects you with a powerful force in your brain, faith, that begins the process of making your vision become a reality. The very spark of belief is all your brain needs to start the process of creating the future that you desire.
Take that leap of faith and write your future vision statement. Four areas to think about are:
- Physical: describe your health, your looks, the aura that you give off, how you carry yourself, the type of clothes this new you wears
- Emotional: describe your strength, how you deal with triggers, and the way that you feel in this ideal future
- Spiritual: talk about your gratitude to your higher power, your relationship to the world around you, the relationship you have to the spiritual side of yourself
- Relationships: write what you are looking for in your relationships, whether current or future ones you hope to have, what you need from them and what you give to them
After you’ve written these down, hang the paper somewhere prominent — a place where you’ll see it, and read it, every day. Take time to read a few of the sentences aloud. Hearing the words will be both empowering and motivating.
Once you know where you want to go, it will only be a matter of time before you find the right path to that dream. And you’ll no longer be like Alice – wandering in Wonderland not sure where to go.