It’s that time of year again! If you’ve been considering what goals to set for 2018, read on. We all know that setting goals is important. Apart from anything else, having something to reach towards, to expand towards and stretch you is a key component to happiness. Humans thrive on working towards some aspiration and in the work I do with my clients it’s a key ingredient that we explore as part of creating a happy life. Today I’m going to be sharing with you a very powerful question to guide your goal creating process.
Any old goal will not do. And here is where I see so many people stumble — they create goals that frankly, they just don’t care enough about. And guess what? When you don’t care enough about your goals they get forgotten about. How many times have you set goals at the beginning of the year only to have them gathering dust by midsummer? It’s a scenario we’re all familiar with. So how can you avoid this? Firstly, stop setting goals for the sake of setting goals. You do not have to have all your goals clear and written up in a beautiful notebook by January the 1st. Take your time to craft meaningful goals. And now we are getting to the juicy part!
When you have a goal in mind there is one question to ask yourself to check if this is the right goal. Here is the question:
“Am I using this goal to avoid some sort of pain in another area of my life?”
It is a deceptively simply question, but one that has massive impact. Shall we look at an example? Say you have decided to set a goal to earn ‘x’ amount of income in 2018. There’s nothing wrong with that goal, but if the desire behind it is to find happiness then it’s a fruitful exercise to look at your life broadly and question where in your life you are feeling unhappy. Maybe you discover that actually you are feeling really lonely and you think the extra income will improve your social life. A far better goal then is to improve your social life. How about another example?
Perhaps you decide that this year you want to lose 15 lbs. But when you ask yourself if this goal is trying to avoid pain in another area of your life perhaps your realise that actually this has more to do about how you are feeling in your marriage than it does about your weight. Know that you can set goals to improve your marriage. You might still decide you want to lose that 15 lbs but you’re now coming at it from a completely different mindset. You see how this question can get you laser focused on the goals that are truly going to impact your life?
When your goals are meaningful you are motivated to achieve them. Take your time. Set the right goals.
If you’d like more help to get clear on what you really want and need out of life I’m going to be holding a FREE challenge in January. This isn’t going to be one of those challenges that is all fluff and no substance. Get ready to dive deep and join us on the Life Audit Challenge HERE.
Originally published at medium.com