Goals or perhaps….?

The recent post on Goals dated August 7th has led to me receiving more emails than for any  other blog post.  I was amazed and humbled that people would take the time to post a comment or to send me an email.  It was a surprise to me that the topic was engaging with so many.

Three different emails voiced their concern over the use of the word goals.  It is a word I have and difficulty with myself.  For some people the word goal sends shivers down their backs and it certainly used to with me.  Goals can sometimes seem to be these insurmountable objectives  or aims which cannot possibly be achieved.

There have been many times when the goals I have set for myself have not been achieved and I have beaten  (verbally) myself up over  the failure.  However many times those goals were not my goals but goals which others thought I should be aspiring to.  One lady always perceived the word goal as being a “male” word.   She doesn’t know why but it has led her to ignore the word and use the word “objective” instead.

Yet another lady wrote how once she substituted  the word project  for the word goal and since doing that she has achieved much more.  While another lady  uses a journal to tease out what she would like to achieve.  She usually starts this in September and uses word picture and together with actual pictures to set up what she would like to TRY and achieve.  She states that it is the trying that is so important to her.

Now I must admit I really like the way this lady thinks.  I like the idea of word pictures but I must say I really like the idea that it is the journey that is so important.  Many times I have found myself deviating from the goal I had set and finding something so much more enjoyable or something more important to me even though I hadn’t realised when starting out.

One email had me laughing right out loud.  This lady wrote that at age 60 she retired and only set one criteria for herself.  That was, that she was having a year without setting targets, goals or whatever.  She is now 72 years of age and still doesn’t set any goals  but on reflection has achieved so much that she ” couldn’t possibly list”.  She is busy, lives life which has included hospital stays and burying her partner but she states ” that I will never be confined again by goals.  I am a happier person without them.”

All the correspondence I have been privileged to receive, has shown me that first and foremost we are all different.  Secondly, goal setting is not the prerogative of any one age group.  Thirdly the title “goal” has different meanings for different people.

The Oxford Thesaurus  gives the following variations to the word goal: “object”, “aim”, “purpose”, “end”, “objective”, “target”, “ambition”, “ideal”, “aspiration”.

The last suggestion has led me to the word “aspirational” which according to Bloomsbury English Dictionary means ” a desire to achieve something especially self-improvement”

Thank you for reading. A special thanks to those who have posted comments on my blog or who have emailed me directly. Thank you.

Goals Again

I received an email from a lady who follows this blog. This is the first time I have received an email from her.

Her email refers to my recent blog on goals and she queries how I can possibly say that goals are for everyone irrespective of age. I quote with her permission “ how can you possibly infer that goals are for everyone. I can honestly say that goals are only for the young in order to make the most out of their lives..”

She saw goals as huge life changing ideals. They were to be set, worked upon and accomplished in order to progress in one’s career. There was no need for anyone to make goals otherwise. She did not see how retirees or stay at home mums, could possibly have goals to make, as these people were “not contributing to society”.

I was taken aback by this email. Firstly , that goal setting was the prerogative of the young. Secondly, the idea of stay at home parents could not possibly have a contribution to make to society  nor could retirees which is an idea I totally reject. Where did these ideas come from?

Wow, I was flabbergasted. After exchanging a few emails I learnt a few things about this lady. Firstly, she is articulate with a great turn of phrase. Secondly, she is a retiree of two years having been a teacher for over forty years. Thirdly what I would have thought of as setting goals she saw as mere trivial dreams. She also concluded that I must have more time on my hands if all I could really blog about was dreams but she would still continue reading my blog.

I think I will keep to my goal settings and just show the world I can do it even if I am a retiree having been a “stay at home” Mum. 😊

What do you think? Are you a goal setter? Do your goals help you to get the best out of life? Or perhaps you don’t need them. I would love to hear what you think.

Thanks for taking the time to read.

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Goals

I don’t know about you, but I have the habit of noting down sayings, adages or words which evoke a response.   It may be years months or days before I reread them or even remember them.   Then there are the quotes which keep on appearing in various reading locations.

I found the following quote when I found a journal buried in the bottom of my Christmas fabric box.   The quote I had written on the first page, but I had also found it written on numerous other pages in the same journal.   Obviously, it had resonated with me years ago and it is really resonated with me today.

Don’t let others define you.

Don’t let the past confine you.

Take charge of your life with confidence and determination.

There are no limits to what you can do or be.

(Michael Josephson)

Can you imagine what a world we would have if we could instil this into our young people?   Can you imagine what the next generation could achieve?  However, I believe that this idea is something any person could take on board at any stage of their life.   That this quote could enhance the quality of anyone’s life.

I really like the line; “take charge of your life with confidence and determination”.   Wow that is so powerful.   Taking charge of my life is something I have been trying to do but to do it with confidence, now wouldn’t that be something else.

Confidence grows with accomplishments.   Instead of setting impossible goals I have set goals which I know I can achieve.   In fact, this year on reflection I have set and achieved numerous goals.   And yes, my confidence has grown in the sense that I know that I can accomplish goals which are important to me and not to anyone else.

I do not need others to endorse what I have achieved but with every goal achieved the confidence which leads to the determination to set more goals.   Personal goals have ignited passions within me and together with the determination I have scrapped some goals.   And that is liberating.

Sometimes we may set goals based on what others think they should be rather than being true to ourselves and the goals which we know are good for us.   Sometimes we need to have the confidence and determination to listen to our inner voice and ignore those who really don’t know what ignites our passion.  “Don’t let others define you”.

Sometimes it is difficult to let go of the goals which were set 20, 30 even 40 years ago.   I have found  the goals of years ago which I had  set but had not achieved had been hanging around me like this big ball and chain.   This year I realised that one goal in particular was not going to define me.   I actually admitted to myself that I had felt a failure for not having achieved it.   However , on reflection I realised that it hadn’t really been my goal but instead I had thought that it should be and it would give me a sense of worth.   The relief of finally saying that I didn’t need to take on someone elses goal was immense.  It was also liberating.

It is good to set goals but it is even more rewarding when the goals are one’s we set for ourselves and follow through with confidence.  Sometimes as we grow older we forget that goals are not just for the young.  Setting personal goals keeps us going. It adds spice to our lives and enriches our lives.