In this project, you are asked to imagine and design three alternative five-year plans for your life after college. Employing the creativity mindsets we discuss. Your project should document your exploration of topics such as Curiosity, Play, Divergence,Risk, Ambiguity, Failure and Resilience. It can be presented in a creative medium of your choosing.
Each ideas should include a visual/graphical timeline which incorporates personal and professional goals. It should also outline at least three essential questions that each alternative plan is asking.Projects should aim for depth, risk and introspection.
Myth: I need to figure out my best possible life, make a plan and then execute it.
Reality: There are multiple great lives (and plans) within me, and I get to choose which one(s) to create.
One of the most powerful ways to design your life is to design your lives. I’m asking you to imagine and draft three different versions of your life. The idea is that if your mind starts with multiple ideas in parallel, it’s not prematurely committed to one path and stays more open and able to receive and conceive more novel innovations.
Try NOT to think of these plans as “Plan A, Plan B, and Plan C” – where A is the really good plan and B is the okay plan and C is the plan that you really hope you don’t get stuck with but that every plan is a great idea. Think of these plans as sketches of your imagination and allow you to discover possibilities.
Life One: That Thing You Do
Your first plan is centered on what you’ve already got in mind – either your current life expanded forward or that hot idea you’ve been nursing for some time. This is the idea you already have.
Life Two: That Thing You’d Do If Thing One Were Suddenly Gone
It happens. Some kinds of work come to an end. Just imagine that your life one idea is suddenly over and no longer an option. For example, what if robots take over the accounting profession? What if a particular art form is banned by the government and you are no longer able to pursue it or you will be thrown in jail? This is extreme of course – but what would you do then? This requires you to really use your imagination to believe that you have to make a living doing something other than doing That Thing You Do.
Life Three: That Wild + Crazy Thing You’d Do or The Life You’d Live if Money or Image Were No Object.
If you could make a decent living at it and you knew no one would laugh at you or think less of you for doing it – what would you do? If money and fear were off the table, what would you do? Imagining this alternative can be a very useful part of your life design exploration.
Your project should include:
- A visual representation of each life and/or a graphical timeline. Include personal and non-career events as well, you are crafting a full and happy life. You should explore what that means to you.
- A title for each option in the form of a headline describing the essence of this alternative.
- At least three questions that this alternative is asking. A good designer asks questions to test assumptions and reveal new insights. In each potential timeline, you will investigate different possibilities and learn different things about yourself and the world. What kinds of things will you want to test and explore in each alternative version of your life?
- Your plans should include: geography (where will you live?), the experiences you want to have, the learnings you want to gain, the potential impacts/results etc. Get as detailed as possible. Please keep in mind things other than career and money! Even though these things are important, there are other critical elements you want to pay attention to.
- A reflection at the end which details how you employed each of the creativity mindsets we’ve discussed in class.