We usher in October tomorrow which means that 2013 is rapidly coming to an end. Remember all those New Year’s resolutions you swore would be accomplished this year? How did those short and long term goals pan out?
Most likely you accomplished some and dropped some. That’s the norm for most of us. I’ve been able to finish two short term goals and two long term goals so far this year. I postponed one to be completed in 2014. The only long term goals I have left for this year concerns my running.
Goals give us targets to shoot for and assist us in moving forward in life areas that we feel need improvement. When they are written properly, they serve to keep us focused and motivated. When accomplished, they give us an incredible boost of confidence and spur us on to create greater ones. I love the feeling of winning with my goals.
Bringing my goals into the public eye this year via this blog has been an interesting experience. It’s helped me develop a clearer understanding of goals and their importance in my life. Most notably, I’ve realized the need to establish a balance between goals that can be accomplished quick and those that will take some more time. Both types have value, bringing unique things into my life.
The Value of Short Term Goals
I define short term goals as those that can be accomplished in six months or less. They are like the appetizers that serve as a quick meal to curb the goal-setting rumblings that routinely pop up in our soul. Short-term goals can be intense but in general, they are easier to accomplish and require less effort than than long term goals
Their real value lies in these qualities:
1. They take less time to plan.
2. They give us frequent boosts of confidence as we achieve them.
3. Often times, they serve as the foundation for the accomplishment of larger goals.
Everyone needs a steady diet of short term goals they can pound out. I’ve become increasingly convinced to make them more of a staple in the future. Our minds have difficulty sticking with goals that require years of effort. Being overloaded with only long term goals might set us up for too many failures and bring on discouragement.
We have been blessed with a unique human ability – the ability to dream. Dreams are all about the future, most often our distant future. It’s through our dreaming that our long-term goals find staying power.
The Value of Long Term Goals
So, you want a more secure financial future? Money for retirement? Kids that graduate from college? That second home in the mountains? A lasting marriage? These don’t happen overnight. They definitely fall into the category of long term goals
Long term goals create huge challenges. They are complicated, with many moving parts and adjustments that must be made along the way. Reaching these requires the deepest levels of commitment.
Their real value lies in these qualities:
1. They force us to develop intensive discipline.
2. They develop humility in our lives (because so many people help us along the way).
3. They keep our mind dreaming as we envision finally getting to the end result.
Of all the goals I’ve reached, the long term goals bring the most satisfaction. They require so much effort it’s impossible to not feel intensely gratified – and proud – and relieved – and a host of other emotions when you reach them. That’s why I’ll always have a few of these on my goals list.
If creating goals has never excited you, then I urge you to try it out today. Read this post to learn how to create them and this post for suggestions on what areas of your life to focus on. Begin with several short term goals and then progress to a longer one. You will find always moving towards a goal brings purpose and focus to your life.
Questions: I’d like to know, do you focus more on short or long term goals? What other value do you see in each of them? What goals have you completed recently that you are proud of?
Now, for an abbreviated September goals update. I’ll only focus on those I have remaining for the year.
Goal: Read one book a month.
Failed. This is the second month in a row I failed here and I’m really frustrated by it. I need to implement some new procedures in my life if this is going to happen in October.
Goal: To support Mrs. Luke1428 as she obtains her MBA by December, 2013
Almost done here. The last assignments are turned in by October 11th.
Goal: To run a full marathon in under 4 hours and run 1,000 miles for the year.
My run total for September was 138 miles as I prep for the Baltimore Marathon on Oct. 12th.
For the year I have run a total of 798 miles. (I really can’t believe that.)
Goal – Blog Related:
Guest post at least once per month. It wasn’t a full-fledge guest post but I did write a 200+ word excerpt for Fearless Dollar as they kicked off their new site. I had a lot of fun helping with that.
Submit an article to a blog carnival twice a month. Completed.
Comment on a Yakezie article or in the forums once a week. Failed…only due to lack of time, not lack of interest.
That’s it for now. Have a great Monday!
Next Post: When Conviction Trumps Value
Prior Post: A Trick to Staying Motivated