“How to Get Over Dreading Goal-setting”
Have you ever sat with an older person? Maybe a parent or a friend. They usually have incredible words of wisdom and some darn good advice. Pearls of wisdom like "don't let fear stop you" or "life's t...
Have you ever sat with an older person? Maybe a parent or a friend. They usually have incredible words of wisdom and some darn good advice. Pearls of wisdom like "don't let fear stop you" or "life's too short --- do what you enjoy". It is simple advice but, sadly, it only comes to most of us with age....
I know the feeling of being stuck and wanting more in my life -- but not knowing which direction to go in or how to begin. "To begin" is usually the most difficult part of changing something or getting something we want.
I consider myself a serious, practical person who tends to avoid risk. When I stutter step on taking action on things, I'm reminded about that old adage: "When you're on your deathbed......." will you wish you had taken more chances, been more selective about things in your life? Why do I stand in the background, and "wish" and "hope" that certain things in my life will miraculously be different "next year"?
Well, the truth is there are two critical steps to achieving what you want:
1. Knowing what you 'really' want, and...
2. Having a plan for consistent action toward your goals.
Without these two components, your life may well be the same next year. The fact is most people never allow themselves to dream or change their life. People very rarely write down their goals (a strong indicator of actually achieving them), which often means they are lost forever. What a loss!
I sometimes post pictures of things I'd like to achieve. They remind me to spend more time in my garden...to go places I've never been...to take more risks, both personally and professionally. Each year is a new adventure! But my dreams and goals don't "just happen" by themselves. Each year I list my dreams, and decide if they are in keeping with my personal mission and goals for my life. I write them down and methodically put them into action.
Another way I motivate myself and keep my goals top of mind is to post them on 3 x 5 index cards around my home. Yes, one on the bathroom mirror, one on the office wall and, of course, one on the refrigerator. This lists top goals. It does not list the "to do" aspect of achieving them. It has the effect of motivating me -- and it works for me.
If you are stuck and wondering what the next step should be, grab a pencil and paper and answer some questions such as these:
* What dream have you tucked away?
* What is keeping you from taking life by storm?
* Do you live for everyone else, thinking, "My time will come later?"
* Are you longing for something in your life but don't know what that something is? Are you afraid to name it?
* Do you wish your life was different but every year it is the "same old thing"?
* What is different about your life today from last year?
* Are you happy with your decisions and the things you have in your life?
Once you have some answers to the above questions do a "brain dumping" of all your goals into these general categories, try to have a minimum of 10 items:
1. Personal Development
2. Career Development
3. Fun and Adventure
4. Giving back to the community or world at large
Now comes the hard part! Choose just one top goal for each of the categories and focus on it. Put a "to do" action list below each top goal. Put a timeline next to your goals because, as Tony Robbins says, "Goals are dreams with a timeline"!
Putting your goals and dreams down on paper will make them more alive and top of mind as you progress through your everyday life. However, nothing can take the place of consistent action and persistence in accomplishing your goals. So ask yourself how you can move yourself closer to your goals. Even one simple action each day -- a phone call or conversation -- can move you toward your dream despite of the hectic life you might be living.
One thing is certain, if you do nothing your life may be the same next year.
"Do not wait; the time will never be "just right." Start where you stand, and work with whatever tools you may have at your command, and better tools will be found as you go along." -- Napoleon Hill, Writer
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