Saturday, April 2, 2011

Understanding Goals to Maximize Results and Success

Over the past few weeks I have spent a lot of time thinking about goals; what they are and how they play a role in our lives.  At an early age we are taught that setting a goal is the way to accomplish things, but too often we are not actually actively moving towards that goal.  When we are younger in school it is easy to stay on track with our goals because we have regular assignments and tests, and in the workplace there are goals that the company has such as quarterly earnings and sales.  Are these really the goals that make up our lives though?

I am sure that if you ask a group of average adult what their goals are that the majority of them will be able to tell you something that is important to them.  My next question to them would then be "what are you doing to accomplish your goals?"  This is something I feel that people do not think about enough.  We all must be careful that when we decide what we need to accomplish a goal, we do not just blindly trudge forward.  Goals are dynamic, constantly changing, and the outside conditions change on a daily basis.  On our journey to reach our goals we will have to change our game-plan, redirect our angle of attack, maybe even adjust our goals.

Imagine it is your goal to go to Disney World.  If you just look at a map and decide to drive south you may have a hard time.  You are going to have to plan a specific route, but if you just set cruise control and drive you will not make it.  When you are driving you need to watch out for other cars and objects that get in your way.  It is important to stay mindful of how much gas you have, you need to check the tire pressure, and there may be road closures that force you to completely change your route.  It is the same for our goals in life.  If we decide that to accomplish our goals we need to do A, B, and C then blindly strive towards those without paying attention to what is going on around us, we may get to the end our lives and decide that A, B, and C were right at the beginning, but then X, Y, and Z needed to be done.  Life is too short to waste time and energy on futile efforts, so it is important to strive towards your goals in a constructive way and constantly work on areas of your life that improve your ability to accomplish your goals.

Spend some time to decide what your goals are, then decide what you need to do to get to those goals, and on a regular basis think about what you are doing to accomplish your goals and decide if those areas are still what you should be doing.

 "I can't change the direction of the wind, but I can adjust my sails to always reach my destination."
        -Jimmy Dean

RJ LoPresti