IBA Exercise Best Possible Self

Submission Instructions:

Submit your written response via Canvas. Your final response will be a typed Word document with one inch margins, single spaced 11 point Calibri font, be about two pages long (but must not exceed three pages).

 

Purpose & Learning Objective:

How can we help our MBA students maximize their success after graduation? By helping you form goals that are meaningful, maximize your potential talents, and pursue personal wellbeing. This exercise is designed to accomplish this objective.

 

The best responses will require thoughtful consideration, so please allow yourself sufficient time to work through the required steps. Feel yourself grow stronger as your sense of purpose becomes clearer.

 

Instructions for Best Possible Self Exercise

You are to imagine your “best possible self” three (3) years from graduation (e.g., May 1, 2025), and provide a written description of three domains: Personal, Professional, and Relational.

 

Your best possible self means visualizing yourself in a future in which everything has turned out as good as is realistically possible. You have worked hard and you have managed to realize all your life goals up to that point in time. You can imagine it as satisfying your short-term life goals and development of your best possible potentials. You are to think of the best possible ways in which your life could develop in the three domains, with the goal to direct the decisions you make in the present.

 

IBA Exercise  Best Possible Self

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You aren’t going to complete this exercise in one sitting. In order to determine and guide constructing your best possible self, take 20 minutes to think and the write down your goals, skills, and desires you would like to achieve 36 months from graduation for each of the three domains. Once you feel confident you have appropriate goals defined, then merge these into a personal story like a journal entry or a letter to old mentor. Be prepared to share your goals and story with your peers.

 

Step 1: Craft the elements of your different domains

You have probably never thought about yourself based on a future point in time, but research from positive psychology has indicated that this method may have a beneficial influence on your mood, goal-directed behavior, and relationship formation. Over the next seven days, you are encouraged to keep thinking about and imaging yourself in this way: think during this time of valuable skills and meaningful goals that you would like to acquire and achieve in three years.

 

1. Personal Domain

Think of goals you would like to attain on a personal level (e.g., physical, psychological, creativity, etc.). Use bullets to list, describe and explain.

 

2. Professional Domain

Think of goals you would like to attain on a professional/work-related level (e.g., position, accomplishments, level of expertise, but also occupation and skills, etc.). Use bullets to list, describe and explain.

 

3. Relational Domain

Think of goals you would like to attain on a relational level (e.g., relations and contacts with loved ones, friends, colleagues, but also joint activities etc. in your social life). Use bullets to list, describe and explain.

 

Step 2: Merged the domains into a story that describes your situation three years into the future.

Story telling is a way for us to see the future and make in real. For example, people will not remember a list of goals, but they will remember a story that incorporates those goals. You are going to write a story. Now write down in as much detail as possible on how you visualize your ideal future. You can use the goals you have just constructed as a guide. Like practiced in the previous imagery exercise, while describing your thoughts, try to activate your senses, feelings, and perceptions and make a personal story of it. Help the reader to “feel” your story. It might start like this… “Dear Dr. Artis or Dear Diary, It is May. 1, 2025, I am exactly where I want to be and enjoying every day. I am….” See the example provided to help you get started.

 

Step 3: Share this exercise with someone whose opinion maters and report their response and use it to update your plans.

Once you have a written description of your best possible self, it grows stronger the more times you visualize it and express it. Hence, you will describe it to people you respect and trust. A mentor would be ideal, but it can be anyone who has a genuine interest in your wellbeing (spouse, parent, boss, etc.).  Therefore, you will share your goals and story, then report who this person is to you, their feedback, and how you used their feedback to improve your goals (Personal, Professional & Relational). Keep this short and to the point (a paragraph). Here again, see the example.

 

Step 4: Submit Best Personal Self Exercise via Canvas.

Finalize the written Word document that covers your goals and the story. Submit via canvas. You will share with your IBA Team, request feedback, and if you chose update your future personal self exercise.

 

 


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