Goals. What do they mean to you and how do you feel when you set them for yourself? According to Webster Dictionary, a goal means “The end toward which effort is directed.” This time of year, especially, there is so much pressure to set goals, but how inspired are you to do so and how likely is it that you will follow through?
If you find yourself setting goals only at New Years and don’t usually follow through, it is more than likely not intrinsically driven, but rather extrinsically driven by an outside source or because you feel like you “should.” This isn’t going to keep you going and won’t sustain you through the not-so-fun aspects of getting what you want. However, what could sustain you is using different language and having fun in the process!
I like to use a different kind of language to get to my results (or rather, reach my “goals” in life.) As a women with many different roles (wife, mother, friend, entrepreneur, etc.), I work hard at remembering to keep in touch with my femininity which often gets lost when I “set goals” for myself. When I think about setting goals, I instantly feel restricted, pressured, limited and confined. As a result, I become very rigid, controlling, rushed and always needing to be doing. When I am rigid, controlling, rushed and needing to be doing all the time, it takes me away from myself and from my femininity and, as a result, I lose a very important part of who I am which is to be abstract, creative, receptive, tranquil and nurturing.
Don’t get me wrong, I have very high standard for myself and the life I lead. In fact, until I learnt this about myself, I had spent most of my life “setting goals” but not really enjoying the ride. Often I would attain or reach my goals, but not be connected to myself. I lost the flow, the flexibility, the openness of who I was and replaced it with linear, controlled thinking which isn’t who I am. I have since learnt that to attain the results or intentions I set for my life, the best way is to remain connected to my essence in the process. In order to do this I changed my language from “this is my goal” to “this is what I look forward to.” The power of this simple switch in language has been very powerful to me (and I hope for you too).
Focusing on what I am looking forward to in the days, weeks, months to come, I can then pour energy into making that happen, but in a way that is true to my nature which is to be creative and open. I like to practice flow and freedom when setting “goals” for myself. So, rather than saying “I want to accomplish x goal,” I ask myself “what am I looking forward to today? This week? This year?” This is a much kinder way to bring forth your intentions if “setting goals” isn’t working for you. Where focus goes, energy flows. So, if you are focused on achieving your goal, or rather what you are looking forward to, then energy will flow in that direction. I don’t know about you, but I want to live my life looking forward to what I want while remaining true to who I am in the process. After all, life is happening while you are planning for the future!
What brings me joy is being who I am and that is to be creative, open, expressive, and nurturing. I understand the importance of “goal setting,” and that is why I have replaced “setting goals” with “what I am looking forward to” I know that by having a clear outcome of the results I want, I am able to create a direction for which to attain them.
Here is an example of what this may look like:
- “I am looking forward to running a marathon in six months.”
- “I am looking forward to losing 25 pounds by summer 2016.”
- “I am looking forward to spending an extra few hours every week with my kids.”
- “I look forward to opening my own business in eight months.”
When I remind myself of what I am looking forward to experiencing, then I get inspired to make change happen without compromising myself as pure feminine energy. I become enthused and excited for the future without compromising who I am. What I want to experience this year is more joy; better physical and mental flexibility; even more love for my family and friends and the world at large. What I am looking forward to this year is everyday being in touch with my flow, openness, creativity and love. I am looking forward to watching my loved ones grow and be with them on their journey.
If setting goals IS working for you, DO NOT change. However, if “setting goals” isn’t working for you, but you want to change something in your life, try asking yourself “What am I looking forward to?”
So, what are you looking forward to today? This week? next month? This year?!