One of the first things I work with clients on is goal setting. In theory, this should be a fairly easy straightforward task.
But it’s not.
Once upon a time, all of us had big goals.
We wanted to become veterinarians (or other medical professionals), which had very clear cut steps.
First, we had to graduate from high school, obviously. Then we had to go to college. During college, we had to both have good grades and obtain some work experience. Then we applied.
Hopefully we got into vet school. Once we got in, then we had to buckle down and pass our classes.
And then, finally, we graduated.
Goal achieved. But then we had to find a job, and once we found that job, we spent those first few years just learning how to do our jobs.
It was a bit overwhelming for awhile. Getting your feet under you those first years can take your full time concentration, not to mention you’re often still in the giddy stage of having achieved your life-long dream.
But what happens next?
That’s where the problem comes in.
Once we’ve achieved our big goal, we often don’t think to set any more.
And that’s a huge problem for us.
We have to be or we wouldn’t have achieved that first goal, right?
Well, those kind of people don’t do well when they don’t have anything else to work towards.
They need projects. Goals. Motivation.
Instead, we don’t even think about it. We just get into the daily grind of waking up, going to work, dealing with angry clients, frustrating bosses, etc, and then we go home, deal with families, and go to bed. Rinse, repeat.
It’s not a bad life, usually, but it’s not a motivated life.
That’s where goal setting comes in.
Once we get into that routine, that grind of life happening every single day and all we’re doing is going along with it, that’s when so many of the negative emotions start to settle in.
We get bored. We get frustrated with where we are and start feeling trapped, and can’t quite figure out why or what to do next. Worse case, we start feeling those feelings of depression and burnout.
And we never stop to think that maybe, one of the best solutions is to start coming up with new goals for ourselves.
Those goals don’t have to mean a whole new career again! Although they sure can.
They can include things as simple as “Learn Spanish” or “Travel to Europe.”
They can be anything.
But we have to start setting goals again.
We have to start looking ahead, figuring out where we want to be and what we want to do.
We need to start thinking about what else we want to have in our lives that is not already there, things that we can be working towards.
And maybe none of those goals will ever be as huge as “Become a veterinarian” again.
But that’s okay. That’s not the point.
The point is to have goals that will get us out of the surviving only mode and back into the excited and motivated zone!
Goals help us be excited for life!
What is one of your goals?
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