One of the assessment tools I used as part of my dissertation research I called the Road of Life. It was a combination of the Wheel of Life (Whitworth, Kimsey-House and Sandahl, 1998, Co-Active Coaching) and the Life Satisfaction Scale (Biswas-Diener and Dean, 2007, Positive Psychology Coaching).
Both of these life satisfaction assessments, ask the client/person to rank on a scale of 0-10, zero meaning completely unsatisfied and ten being highly satisfied, their personal satisfaction levels. The areas that are ranked are common life satisfaction areas of: Physical Environment, Career/job, Finances, Growth and Development, Family and Friends, Partner/spouse, Fun and Recreation, and Health. The areas may change from time to time, but in short if these areas are balanced for an individual usually life satisfaction is high.
I took the best of both assessments and created what I called the Road of Life Assessment. It takes the areas of satisfaction and adds to it what is important. So first rank the importance of each area than rank your current satisfaction level. This results in a road map for your personal life satisfaction. If finance is ranked very high (one of your values) and your satisfaction rating is very low – you have potholes and maybe sink holes. It worked pretty well and with a few adjustments I think it is a valuable tool to really assessment importance and satisfaction together.
What does your Road of Life look like? Remember when we talked about your values and how they should be the ‘drivers’ in your life? Yep, it comes around again as an important point when you look at life satisfaction and your Road of Life. Let me give you my assessment as an example to how this works.
My Drivers: Believing, Achieving, and Giving
My current satisfaction levels ranked highest to lowest are: Growth and Development (9), Partner/spouse (9), Family and Friends (8), Finances (8), Fun and Recreation (6), and Health (5), and Physical Environment (4).
My rank of what is more important to me is: Growth and Development, partner/spouse, health, family and friends, fun and recreation, finances, and physical environment.
I believe that I can achieve great things. Growth and development are two ways to achieve this and I believe in myself and abilities to make a difference. It is important to me to always learn from others and myself as that will allow me to give more of myself.
I believe that to be loved and to love is about giving. It is important to me to give my time, energy and commitment to others and I can do this by believing that I am capable of love as well as have a willingness to share love.
My 3 month road plan is to repave my career into a development and growth opportunity where I am learning more each day about myself, the job, the impact, and the team.
I will need help and will create a support system that understands my goals, supports my goals, and believes in me.
What do you think? Can you describe your road in this way? Can you take your values/drivers, satisfaction levels and rank and make assessment statements? Try it. There are only three parts, values, determine your satisfaction in the areas listed and determine the importance of each area. What can you determine by these three assessments?