Most will agree on the importance of goal setting, as it allows you to focus on specific, measurable objectives. When setting a goal, you are reminded of what you wish to achieve. You can then focus your energy towards activities that are relevant to the specific goals, while minimizing distractions that throw you off track.
Note the use of the word YOU when discussing the significance of goals. YOU are able to focus on those things that YOU wish to achieve. Goals must be personal. We all have unique goals. Whether your goals focus on education, career, finance, fitness, or competitive events, these are YOUR goals. It is your life, so itâ€™s natural that you have plans in place to achieve YOUR goals.
Sounds good, right?
While setting goals can be useful, there is a fine line between enough and too much. If you only focus on future goals, it is easy to overlook the present time. You may find yourself lost in the â€œsomedayâ€ mentality. Someday I will do this, someday I will do that, someday I will become this, someday I will become thatâ€¦
Itâ€™s as if you are constantly waiting for a future day that will change your life. You become certain that â€œsomedayâ€ will bring happiness, but as soon as you reach one of your â€œsomedayâ€ wishes, you shift gears to a new â€œsomedayâ€ goal.
Donâ€™t fall into this trap. Goal setting does not mean that we should forget about today. You should enjoy yourself as you work towards achieving your dreams. Tomorrow isnâ€™t guaranteed. There will be a time in our lives when tomorrow does not come. This may sound gloomy, but it shouldnâ€™t be. Donâ€™t worry about something you cannot control. Instead, focus on making the most of today. We all live in the present, so we need to enjoy it.
A wake up call
I tend to get wrapped up in my work. Once I have an idea, I often find myself going overboard trying to get it done. I constantly need to remind myself that the work will be there when I wake up in the morning. Yet, even with my own reminders, there are still times when I find myself getting wrapped up in my work. Fortunately (or perhaps unfortunately), life then comes around and throws out a harsh wake up call, which helps to put things back into perspective.
Two weeks ago I went to pick up some food at a local shop in Manchester (CT). We had family over and decided to order out at one of the new restaurants. Those local to me will know the downtown Main Street area. It is a fairly busy road, with cars traveling at a decent clip.
It was a Friday evening, so traffic was busy. I waited for the crosswalk light and started making my way across Main Street. Itâ€™s a multiple lane road so it takes a moment to get all the way across. As I was walking, I looked to my right and noticed a car traveling faster than it should have been considering the red light. In what was probably a 1 or 2 second incident, I found myself suddenly sprinting out of the way of a speeding automobile. It seemed like everything was in slow motion. The driver had blown through a red light and missed turning me into a hood ornament by just a few feet.
I jumped to the sidewalk and didnâ€™t fully realize what had just happened. A man walking his dog then stopped and summed it up nicely with the following, â€œHoly sh*t , that was close!â€
Ten minutes earlier, I had said goodbye to my wife and kids. If I wasnâ€™t paying attention, I could have been hit by a car. Maybe I would have been fine, but maybe it would have killed me. I honestly donâ€™t know. It doesnâ€™t really matter, as it is over and done with, but it did serve as a reminder that life can come and go in a flash. No one knows when their time will come.
Life is unpredictable. Tomorrow is filled with uncertainty. There are no time machines, so no one knows what the future will bring. Iâ€™m all for setting goals, but itâ€™s nice to be reminded that we also need to cherish today. I wonâ€™t let my future goals get in the way of enjoying my life today, tomorrow, and every day after.
Cherish the moment as you work towards the future.