When you think about attempting to reach your goals, what image comes to mind? Does it look like the image above?
For those of you who have read my book, you know that I write about SMART Goals.To be sure, setting SMART Goals is a critical part of getting to where you want to go. After all, if you don't know where you are going, you just might get there. 🙂
Are You Too Attached to Your Goal?
At the same time, being too attached to and too focused on your goals can get in the way of doing what is right for you at any given time.
When I was in college, I decided that I would go to law school. I became so attached to this goal that I did not ask myself why I wanted to go. In hindsight, I can see that I made the decision because being a lawyer sounded like a prestigious career. So, step by step, I prepared, and was accepted to law school.
I focused and reached my goal!
While in law school, I realized that I did not want to be a lawyer, and decided to leave. After leaving, I felt adrift and scared. I wanted immediate security! Now what?
Often when we are scared, we try to latch onto something that feels safe. In my case, it was jumping right into a teaching certification program. After all, I had grown up listening to my parents talk about the security of a teaching position. You teach, retire and then get a pension. The security never ends.
Again, I focused and reached my goal!
After obtaining tenure, I realized that going after the security of teaching was not the right goal for me.
The Danger in Being Too Focused
I think you see where I am going… When we become too focused on where we are going, we may forget to listen to ourselves and ask questions.
We push off the starting block and jump over every hurdle in our way. We just keep pushing through. We don't want to fail, right? Even if we have a niggling feeling that we may be in the wrong lane, we keep on going.
How Do You Remain Focused Enough?
Yes, It is important to set specific goals, i.e., SMART Goals. At the same time, while you are engaged in working toward your goals, it is also important to step away from them occasionally.
Listen to yourself. If you hear uncertainty bubbling up inside of you, listen. Don't ignore what you are feeling. It is just information. You don't need to act on it immediately. As I've shared with you, acting too fast does not help you to get where you want to go any faster.
Instead, ask yourself questions, such as:
What is this uncertainly about?
Is it fear of failure or some other type of fear?
Do I still want to go down this path?
Do I need to make changes to my plan?
Where do I need to go from here?
Who can help me?
Acknowledge that life is uncertain. As you learn and grow and your life circumstance change, you may decide that the path you chose before is no longer the right one for you today. That is ok.
And get help. If you are feeling stuck, talk to someone.
Be open to change. When you start out on a particular path, you have a limited amount of information. As you proceed, you will learn from the actions you take, people you meet, things you read or hear and your changing perspective.
It can be scary to take in new information and consider changing course. Talk to someone about what is going on for you before making any big change. It may take time to make a decision.
Are you on the path that feels right to you? If not, what do you want to be different.
Want support and accountability with reaching YOUR Goals?
The ADDED Perspective Coaching program is now available. Are you unsure if you are on the right path? Do you know where you want to go, but can't seem to get there? Do you feel overwhelmed with too many competing priorities? Check out details of the support available here .