When my daughters were growing up, on New Years Day we had a tradition. We sat at the round kitchen table and with the help of pen, paper and some artsy designs, to make it all attractive, we were writing down our goals for the coming year.
I don’t know if my daughters are still keeping this habit, but as the saying goes, “if one doesn’t know where she/he is going, HOW ARE YOU GOING TO GET THERE?
For that reason, even if I don’t keep all my goals, I still like to have a general direction for the new year. For instance, some of my goals for 2015 are:
To continue and expand this blog, to be more involved in specific ways with my church, that includes Bible Studies, to take care of my health, specifically to go to physical therapy.
Last year one of my goals was to apply make up on my face when I went out. Well… I did that for about two months. After that? A colored gloss was the replacement of make up.
I guess I need to try again and make applying make up one of the goals for 2015. A re-run!!!
The point being that we don’t always keep all our New Year’s goals, but at least we try. May be if we keep two of them, it is more than none. At least in the back of our minds we know what needed to be done.
A few rules to help accomplish goals:
1. They need to be realistic. Magical thinking will only lead to not accomplishing a goal. Yes, I know I will not fly to the Moon:(
2. Use the art of chunking (there is a whole post on chunking on this blog) What it means: Break a large goal in small steps. For instance, you want to write a book. Start with short stories. Start by blogging or just put your thoughts down privately if you are not ready to share. Just establishing a pattern of discipline is valuable.
3. Make no more than four goals. If you make ten goals, chances are soon after you will be overwhelmed and drop them all.
It is better to have less large goals and break them in steps to accomplish them.
When I was defecting from communist Romania, many years ago, in my train sleep compartment I traveled with an 80-year old woman who told me:
“Never make long term goals. Life will derail you! Don’t you see the Romanian communist party? They make 5-year plans for agricultural crops! Then we have a drought and down the drain goes their 5-year plan!”
Her advice haunted me for years and after careful thinking, I concluded that actually the meaning of it was don’t make plans dependent on nature or generally of others.
This takes me to rule number…
4. MAKE GOALS WHICH YOU PERSONALLY COULD ACCOMPLISH! For instance I could say my goal for 2015 is to be loved by my daughters. I cannot make another love or value me… I could ONLY value myself and love myself enough to have self-respect.
Have a Happy, Healthy 2015! Here is to manageable goals!
Thank you so much for reading my blog and following it. I will continue to share topics that help everyone in their daily lives!