When working through a lifeline exercise, (a "how did I get here?" practical exercise that shows your story from the time you were born to the present) typically you identify themes that pop up as you explore all your important events, transitions, proud moments and struggles throughout your life.
One way to get laser-focused on finding themes that emerge without feeling too overwhelmed with the entire exercise is to start with just a few defining moments.
You can take 1-3 important transitions in your life and career, and journal about them to discover what patterns emerge and how they shifted your perspective.
A few thoughts to get you started . . .
Who was there? Who or what helped you make progress? Who/what inhibited you? What was the learning lesson?
Consider your emotions, reactions, and key relationships. What were the impacts in these areas?
Appreciative Inquiry Project:
Provocative Propositions for the Children's Museum
Below is a highlight of the provocative propositions our Appreciative Inquiry project team developed as we worked with the Museum during the practicum (as referenced in the podcast). These propositions were written using collected data and stories based on a series of interviews with board members, leadership, staff, and customers (both parents and children).
First our team interviewed the leadership and board of the Museum to understand their goals and dreams, and in this case it was to get a bigger, better space, and have a greater impact on the families and children in the city and surrounding areas.
Then, we spent the day at the Museum, interviewing more of the board, staff, and customers on the high point moments and core strengths of the organization.
We pulled those stories together to identify themes that emerged to highlight the Museum "bests." Then, we worked together to write provocative propositions that would push on the Museum's ultimate desires and destiny.