Wednesday, August 10, 2011

The Power of Setting goals

As wonder women we wear many different hats each day.  We are the mother, the wife, the cook, the baker, the house cleaner, the nurse, the teacher, the business woman, and many other things that seem to go along with being a woman.  It takes a lot of energy and usually most of our time to accomplish all of these things.  Because of this, we have a tendency to put ourselves on the back burner which sometimes makes us feel like we have gotten lost in our own lives. Years will go by without taking the time to do things that are important to us.  When this happens for a long period of time, women start feeling less like the wonder women they are and more like a robot, who has little value, just going through the motions of life.

This was how I lived for the first ten years of my married life.  I got caught up in the business of being a mother, homemaker and wife.  I didn't take time for other things that I wanted to accomplish in my life such as learning to play the piano, read certain books, go on vacations etc.  I wasn't prepared for what, to me, was exactly like a mid-life crisis that showed up about the time I turned 30.  When I turned 30, I realized that ten years of my life had quickly slipped away and all I had to show for it were my 5 children.  Even though that, in itself, was a huge accomplishment, it wasn't enough to make me feel fulfilled in my life.  I felt like I had very little value. I sunk into a deep depression for months.

I finally realized that if I didn't want to seriously go off the deep end when I turned 40, I had better make some changes in my life.  For years I had heard all of the motivational gurus telling everyone to set clear goals in their lives, then one day I was listening to a motivational program called Lead the Field by Earl Nightingale.  He said that the definition of a successful person was a person who was working toward a goal.  I had an ah hah moment!  This was the answer to my problem.  If I was working on the things I wanted to accomplish in my life, then I wouldn't have another major crisis at age 40.  I had always known that I should set goals, but it was something I had never been good at so I had just put it off.

I got out a notebook and started writing.  I put a lot of things on my list.  Some were very large goals like taking my kids to Disney Land or running a river.Others were very small like finding a new hairstyle, reading with my kids a couple days a week, or going to lunch with a friend.  I felt the healing begin.  As soon as I wrote down my goals, I felt like a new person.  I realized that I did have value and I deserved to take time out for myself to pursue some of my dreams.

At first, I worked on my goals a little each day, but as time went on, I kind of kept them in the back of my mind but didn't work on them as much as I had intended too. The interesting thing about writing down goals is that they seem to take on a life of their own.  I think it is the power of intention.  Once I had determined what I wanted to do, I felt like everything in the universe worked together with me to help me accomplish them.  Even though I didn't look at my list or even work on my goals every day, I knew I was going to be able to cross some of them off my list.   

When I turned 40, I found my list that I had written after I had my crisis at age 30.  I hadn't actually looked at it for a couple of years.  I was very pleasantly surprised to see that even though I hadn't been as focused on my goals as I had intended, I was able to go through and cross off at least of third of them.  It felt amazing!  I felt empowered and worthwhile.

Since then, I have added to my list of goals.  I now have a list of 86 things that I want to do in my lifetime and the list keeps growing. I keep the crossed off goals there, so I can see how amazing and accomplished I am. It makes me feel successful.  Every time I start feeling a little down or under valued, I pull out my list of goals and choose one to work on.  I have found that if I do something each day that takes me closer to crossing that goal off my list, I feel energized and happy.

A good way to start setting goals is just to get a notebook and pencil and ask yourself, "What would I like to do in my lifetime?"  I have noticed that the first things that show up usually have to do with vacations or seeing the world, but then other things will start coming too. It is a good idea to keep a note pad with you every where you go. ( I use my note pad on my cell phone) Everytime you think, " I would really like to do......" Add it to your list.  You will be surprised how fast your list will grow.

I set 2 goals this summer.  One was to walk 9 miles a week.  The other was to avoid eating foods that were made with white sugar and white flour.  It has been difficult at times to do this, but having clear goals has helped to keep me focused. The results have been amazing!  I have lost 6 or 7 pounds, and I am wearing clothes I haven't been able to wear for months.  Most importantly, though, is that I feel great!  I have more energy and I feel happier because I feel better about myself and the way I look.  I AM HAPPY TO BE ME, AND IT FEELS GOOD! 


We would love to hear about your goals and all of your successes if you would like to share them with us in our comment section!  Happy Goal Setting!

1 comment:

  1. I enjoyed reading this post. I reached my mid-life crisis at 40, so you're farther ahead than I was at your age. I think you're right about the power of intention. Sometimes that's all you need to put things into motion. But writing things down does seem to give them a power of their own.