From Tracie: My Life Map

Thursday, November 15, 2012

My Life Map

My Life MapMy Life Map is a guided journal. I was not sure how I would like that, because it sounded like a lot of work with a lot of structure. It also sounded suspiciously like a way to focus on dreams, which is something you all know I have a hard time doing (hey - I'm working on it!). At first glance it did not seem like a book I was going to use.

But the voice in the back of my mind reminded me that sometimes the things that look on the surface like something you will hate are the exact things you need to try. And I realized that a life map has lots of little boxes just waiting to be filled in. It is an organizer's dream. I could not pass it up.

What I liked about My Life Map:
  • The authors, Kate and David Marshall, stress that you can do the exercises in any order. They also warn that not every exercise is going to fit into every person's life, so it is okay to skip the things that do not apply.
  • There was a great emphasis on making the maps work for you - making them fit into your life, focusing on what you consider important, and expressing yourself - instead of making your life work into the maps.
  • The questions did not annoy me. In fact, a lot of the questions in the Your Past Section not only helped me with my map, but also gave me some ideas for blog posts and ideas for another project I am working on.
  •  While there is one, big major map for your whole life, there are also smaller maps that focus on the next ten years within specific areas: Family, Friends, Learning, Work, Service, and Playing. 
  • It really made me think, and put certain periods of my life into perspective. And that dreaming thing that I struggle with - it touched on that a little, too.
  • Working through the exercises reminded me of some things I really enjoyed in the past, and would like to add back into my life in the future, especially in the area of service. 
Sample Life Map

I am in a place of transition right now. Planning and hoping for some big changes, and getting ready to step into new things. I think that is a big part of why I liked My Life Map; it was timely for me.

But I think you could get a lot from using it, even if you aren't in a transitional place. It is a good thing to reflect on the places and phases you have passed through, and look forward to the future intentionally. It is also a great way to cut through the noise and busyness of life, and remember what is really fulfilling and important to you.

Have you ever made a life map?
You can join in the conversation, and find out more about My Life Map at BlogHer.

*Legal Stuff: This was a paid review for the BlogHer Book Club, and I was provided a copy of the book by BlogHer. The opinions expressed are my own, and I was not required to say nice things.


  1. I'm intrigued but also scared by this. I've done a lot of mind maps, but to help with teacher planning and for life goals. But a life map sounds so overwhelming to me. I hope it keeps working for you!

    1. I've never done a mind map, but I hear they are helpful.

      The great thing about this book is that you can start out with the ten year maps - they are much less intimidating.

  2. I find this really interesting, but am not currently in the right headspace to delve into myself. I do think I'd really like the cutting through the noise and busyness right about now.

    1. It really is something you need to be in the right headspace for. You will be there.

      Cutting through the noise and busyness is a beautiful thing.

  3. Never thought about this Tracie. Interesting concept though. Thank you for sharing. I do keep a brief diary of daily events. Blessings.

    1. Keeping a daily diary is a great thing!

      This books is a good Big Picture kind of thing.

      Blessings to you.