Have you ever found yourself just staring into space thinking, “What am I doing with my life?”. Perhaps you have found yourself so far away from where you want to be, but not sure how to get there. We all know it’s essential to set goals to help us achieve, but how do you go about deciding what exactly it is that you are aiming for?
The first thing you need to consider is what the most important thing to you is? Do you want to be super rich? Or to be able to spend time with your family? Are you desperate to travel, or would you rather get to the top of your field? There is no wrong answer, but you have to be really honest with yourself, as this will form the basis for your goals. For example, if you want to have the freedom to spend time with your children, you won’t want to take a job which is well-paid but requires you to work away for most of the time.
Let go of expectations
So many of us set goals that we don’t really care about because we want to hit milestones that we are expected to by our family, friends, and the wider society. For example, it seems as though you should get married, buy a house, have children – but what if that’s not for you? If they are not right for you, you will be wasting your time, working on getting to a destination that has been given to you by other people, when you could be putting that time and energy into what really sets your soul alight!
Most goals are achievable (you may not be able to sprout wings and fly… yet), but not without a lot of hard work. One way to make sure you don’t reach your goals and end up being disheartened is if you set yourself too much, or in too short a time frame. How likely is it really that you will make enough money in six months to buy your dream home? Perhaps consider changing your goal to be three years, to make it more realistic. This way you won’t feel disheartened if it doesn’t all go to plan.
Work out the journey
So you have your starting point, and you now know where you want to get to – but how are you going to get there? Breaking your long-term goal down into smaller, bite-sized short-term goals will help you see the roadmap to get there. This will help for many reasons: for a start, you won’t feel quite so overwhelmed when you think about your goal – you’ll know how to take the first step. Furthermore, you will have the satisfaction of ticking off small goals, which will show you how far you have already gone.
If the goal isn’t working – change it. There are some circumstances where you will need to tweak and adapt your goal a little, to make it work, or perhaps take a slight detour on your journey – and that’s okay! Steve Jobs didn’t wake up one day as the CEO of Apple; it took a lot of hard work, and changes of plans to get there, and he never gave up.
Write your goal and your roadmap out and put it somewhere that you can look at it whenever you feel you need a little boost.