Research Outline

Analogies for Customizing Your Life


To find additional analogies that are like comparing building a house to building a life (such as comparing a blueprint to having a plan) for the purposes of having other ways to illustrate this concept in a book.

Early Findings

  • Some analogies that could be used instead of a blue print for creating the life you want include the following:
    • Planting a garden — With weeds and flowers standing in for challenges and opportunities, and the soil being the foundation for a healthy garden, this metaphor could work well. There is significant information available on this analogy for a deeper understanding.
    • Preparing for battle — This is a metaphor for someone who has the mentality that they need to fight for everything they get. Having the right weapons and strategy will go a long way in winning the battle.
    • A trip or journey — This is a common way to refer to a life's path, but could be useful in showing how to prepare for a vacation or adventure while understanding that plans change (due to weather, closures, or construction) and will require tools for adjustment.
    • Climbing a mountain — This is another metaphor that represents the peaks and valleys of life. It could also include having the right equipment to have a better chance for success and how to deal with unexpected situations (injuries, weather, etc.). This one has quite a bit of information available as well, particularly for achieving goals.
    • Running a marathon — This one could be used with any type of physical challenge that one has to prepare for months or even years in advance. The proper training could be a stand in for life coaching, the equipment needed to run the race could be a stand in for surrounding oneself with the right people in life, the actual race could be full of pitfalls that represent challenges in life, and when the inevitable "wall" hits, it could be a metaphor for when one faces a challenge in life that they must learn to push past.
    • A classroom — Life is full of lessons and people are constantly learning. A classroom metaphor, complete with tests (really difficult challenges), quizzes (easier challenges), projects (life experiences), peer pressure (temptations), and more could really become a detailed way to help someone understand how their life is like a trip through school.
    • Putting together a puzzle — This is a process that takes a lot of time and planning to succeed, and then, even when one gets to the end, there might be pieces missing that have to be found before it can be completed.
    • A city — This could be a very compelling analogy because of the significant details surrounding what goes on in a city. There are peaceful places like parks, thrilling places like amusement parks, dangerous places like bad parts of town, sad places like cemeteries, and hopeful places like churches or schools. People may want to avoid those sad or dangerous places, so they have to plan their way around the city.
    • Cooking/baking — This could be an interesting analogy because meals don't always turn out the way they are planned, even with careful preparation. A successful meal takes a lot of work and various components of the process can be compared to a successful life's journey.
  • Other types of analogies include using a lighthouse as a beacon, a compass as a tool to keep on course, a prison for what is keeping someone from achieving their goals, and sports metaphors for competing against and defeating opponents.
  • The three analogies from the above list that seem most unique are putting together a puzzle, a city, and a classroom.
  • The three analogies that are likely to be the most detailed are planting a garden, a trip or journey, and a city.