martha beck
Illustrations: Peter Arkle
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Step 6: Incorporate New Information into the Island of Experience and Your Ideal Island


Remember, I said this was a magical morphing map. Each time you visit an island in your archipelago, go back to your Island of Experience and your Ideal Island and update them:
  • Add an image of whatever you just did to your Island of Experience.
  • If you found something unexpectedly unpleasant—for instance, it turns out you're allergic to macaws—remove the corresponding image(s) from your Ideal Island and replace them with something you've discovered you like more (you might drop Peru and add a trip to Kalamazoo).
  • As you discover the details of each experience, put additional images on your Ideal Island. For example, if you hear about a great hotel in Lima, you can add an image of the place to your Ideal collage.

Step 7: Repeat


Continue exploring as long as there are any differences between the Island of Experience and Ideal Island. Each time something delights you, add it to your experiences. Each time something disappoints or harms you, find the way to beat it, and put up images that represent your approach. Subtract from your Ideal Island anything that proves unworthy, and add images that feel more like you.

I can't promise that using your map this way will take you directly to your best life—but I can promise it'll take you there indirectly, and that's as good as it gets. One day you'll unroll your length of butcher paper or check out your map wall, and realize two things:

1. You have a clear, detailed, uncluttered picture of the life you want to live, and
2. You're living it. Your magical map is filled with portraits of your present, preceded by a long chain of amazing memories.


Next: How to claim your kingdom

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