"Purpose is when you know and understand what you were born to accomplish. Vision is when you see it in your mind and begin to imagine it."
― Myles Munroe
It is surprising how many gifted, and talented people occupy leadership and management positions without a clear understanding of who they are or their life purpose. Some may ask, why is it so important to know who we are? If I'm naturally using my gifts and talents, don't I already know what I have? My reply is simple: you may have a complete set of carpentry tools in your toolbox, identify what each tool is, and still not know how to use them or why.
Your vision comes from your life's purpose and requires the use of your natural gifts. You'll always be most passionate about things connected to the use of your natural skills. Children naturally gravitate toward things they love to do (passion) and use what comes naturally to them (giftedness). As children, we've all dreamed about what we wanted to be when we grew up – that's vision. To find your life's purpose, identify your natural gifts and talents, there you'll discover your passion and develop a compelling vision.
Validating Your Vision
"Be brave enough to live the life of your dreams according to your vision and purpose instead of the expectations and opinions of others."
― Roy T. Bennett
Your vision comes from your heart and is always aligned with your natural gifts and talents. If your vision is valid, it will be greater than your capacity to accomplish it alone. A valid vision validates you and the people who will work alongside you to fulfill it.
If your vision is valid, you will be able to look back over your life and see some measure of your gifts and talents already in use while you were yet young. The gifts I'm using today are the same ones I've been using my whole life, long before I could articulate my vision.
If your vision is valid, it will be compelling. From the time I was ten years old, I was rallying friends behind ideas that we could enjoy and accomplish together. I look back with amazement that their buy-in came so effortlessly.
Myles Munroe remarks, "Do you have a sense of personal purpose? Do you know why you were born? Does your purpose give you a passion for living? You can know why you exist, fulfill your God-given purpose, and experience a remarkable life in light of that knowledge. Hidden within you is the key to living a more fulfilling life than you ever imagined. That key is vision."
Vision is something that we imagine, something in the future we see, not with our eyes, but with our mind. This ability allows us to think and plan our future by intentionally applying wisdom, knowledge, and a well-thought-out action plan to our imagination.
All leaders are visionaries to some degree; they utilize their imagination to envision a better future. They'll pursue their vision until it begins to recreate their current reality. It will eventually reprioritize their daily agenda.
Everyone has a vision, yet many will not see it materialize. Those who do, have allowed themselves to come under the influence of what they've been dreaming about for years. I've often said that "The odds for success shift heavily in your favor when your vision owns you."
5 Valid Vision Questions
• Do you have a clear vision that each team member can clearly articulate?
• Are your core values clear, and do you recruit, retain, reward, and let employees go based on them?
• Do you have a clear vision for your organization's future (3, 5, 7, and 10 years)?
• Do you have a budget, and is it being monitored regularly?
• Do you have an annual re-occurring full-day (minimum) leadership meeting in the calendar to plan for the upcoming year?
"The dreams and passions stored within hearts are powerful keys which can unlock a wealth of potential."
― John C. Maxwell