Friday, January 9, 2015

Goals vs. Resolutions

Happy New Year everyone! Anyone else tired of saying that?

I know that for many of you the New Year is a time of reflection and setting resolutions. My birthday has always been a bigger milestone and time for reflection/goal setting but regardless of the time of year, there are certain questions that I continuously ask myself when setting goals (not resolutions as those are made to be broken).

Have I met my goals for this year/quarter/month? These goals vary and have included starting this blog, adopting a healthier lifestyle, skydiving (still on the list) and getting out of debt. Some are long range goals and some are one time experiences but they are all part of the bigger goal – To live a full life. This isn’t something that just happens but requires thought, planning and status checks.  Which leads me to my next question…

Is my life continuing to move forward and progress? I have embraced the belief that middle age is relative to when your life truly begins so for me middle age is somewhere in my late 60s. This means I have a few more years to figure out what I want to be when I grow up and at least another 20 years before that mid-life crisis I hear so much about. Adulthood is no longer as settled as it used to be. While there are defining moments such as graduating from high school, graduating from college, marriage, etc.. but it is more and more typical for people to change course several times during adulthood.  So for me this phase of adulthood is about forward movement and growth. As long as I am working toward a goal or the next thing I want to conquer in life, I feel good about things. It is those times that I take stock and feel like I am standing still that I am frustrated.

When that is the case, I look at what changes I need to make in order to fix that. Is it as simple as taking a photography class to improve my blog posts or does it involve a bit more action such as finding ways to cut my monthly costs so I can save for a family vacation? The idea is to set long term and short term goals that are achievable and to map out the steps needed to accomplish those goals. Remember, we need to have healthy expectations and set healthy goals rather than set ourselves up for failure.

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