I was thinking today about all the things I still have time to accomplish if I just put my energy and time into them. I am at an age that I realize that most things can be achieved if I really want to see them happen. I firmly believe that the reservoir is likely to never run down if I keep replenishing it with loads of optimism, curiosity and tenacity of spirit. Once I set my mind to a task and I take my desire seriously I move forward with actions that will lead to the attainment of my goal. The first stage is to separate the fantasy from the reality to cut through all the illusions and the pretense that has dominated my thoughts. This is the beginning of turning my daydreams into tangible steps that will ensure that my intention is transformed into goals that can be actualized. The second stage is commitment. It is a silent and a sacred contract that I make with just myself and to my higher power. This is what truly transcends my vision into the world by bringing it into my consciousness and freeing up my creativity. The third stage involves my inquisitiveness. I start to wonder and mentally picture what measures I must take to begin harnessing my energy and channeling it in the direction that will eventually take me down the road to where it is that I need to go to reach my desired destination. The fourth stage calls on me to put to good use my intuitiveness. It demands that I tap into my ability to relinquish control and to open myself up to the presence of awareness. Without participating in this hyper-alertness exercise I would not have the key to unlock my imagination. The fifth stage involves compartmentalizing my idea. I do this slowly and meticulously. I want to capture all of the essential details that must be acknowledged and that need my attention. The best way I have found to do this is through a technique that was shared with me by one of my graduates. It is defined in a book entitled: “The Artist’s Way” A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity. It was a present that my student gave me to whom she inscribed the words on the inside cover that read: “Victoria, this is a very special book for a very special friend. May this book open the gate to many new horizons” And, it has done just that in providing me with the how-to’s of spiritual recovery in addition to giving me a basic formula (a template) for drawing out a diagram that illustrates my intention and links all the factors related to it. It is this illustration that separates each and every aspect of my wish by placing my intention in a labeled, sacred circle and from the center of this circle, a starburst of offshoots that radiate outward. The image is that of a sun – the type of simple representation of a sun that an innocent child in a pre-school might conjure up in a line drawing and then take home to have proudly displayed on the family refrigerator. On each of the lines emulating from the center of the sun is a description that relates to some aspect of my intention. When I have thought of every possible task and added it to my to-do diagram I know that it is complete and I can stand back and see what I will be responsible for if I do choose to move forward. The final stage involves establishing a sensible plan. This is where tenacity of spirit comes to play. Taking the time and exerting the effort signifies my total involvement, commitment and caring. This is when I really begin to roll up my sleeves and do the “real” work to see all that I have visualized comes to pass. The plan is proof that I understand and I recognize the accountability required to bring forth my ideas and to see them come alive not just in my mind but in reality.