How to Move Forward, in a Flash

February 19, 2019

Ever have a flashback that takes you back to a particular moment in time?

What was the experience that just flashed through your mind – positive or negative?

Given our propensity to recall negative events with more frequency and clarity, the likelihood is that your flashback is to a painful memory rather than a positive one.

reverse direction

And while flashbacks can provide valuable information, there’s a device you’ll find more helpful as you plan a positive future.

The flash-forward.

What’s that, you say?

Here’s the official definition:

“Flash-forward is a literary device in which the plot goes ahead of time, i.e. a scene that interrupts and takes the narrative forward in time from the current time in a story.”

Commander-in-She Flash-forward device

A flash-forward represents future events as they may be anticipated within the main plot line.

Just as flashbacks revisit past events, flash-forwards reveal important parts of the story that have not yet taken place.

This literary device can be applied to your own life, especially if you feel like you’re playing the waiting game.

The result? Clearer ambition, greater positivity, increased engagement in the yet-to-be-written future chapter.

So, rather than reviewing events that have already happened (or ruminating / fixating / harping on them), flash forward a year or two or ten in your life.

book open How to Move Forward, in a Flash

It’s your story… what happens next?

Where are you? Who are you with? How do you spend your time? What do you see?

Create the image in your mind.

Experts say such visualization takes that scene from imaginary to reality.

Your flash-forward can serve as your goal imaging and a key point in your developing story.

Create it frequently. Revisit and revise as necessary.

Better yet, write it down. Then when you revisit, see if what you imagined has been realized and if not, is it still of the same importance to you?

After all, you’re the author of this story. Why keep re-reading an old or outdated chapter when you can build a new one?

Valerie Gordon offers storytelling workshops to audiences of all sizes (and ages and gender!) She helps high-achieving employees earn the success and satisfaction they deserve by providing the communication skills and career tools necessary to build a better personal brand, improve networking, interviewing and negotiating skills and take command of conflict and uncertainty at work. See more at

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