Essential Questions You Need to Frequently Ask Yourself About Your Goals
In his thought-provoking masterpiece, The Light in the Heart, Roy T. Bennett, writes, “Goals are the road maps that guide you to your destination.” Goals are the stepping stones that can help you achieve your purpose in life. Like many people, you probably have clearly defined goals.
But did you know that merely having a goal isn’t enough? What’s most important is knowing the validity and effectiveness of those goals. Because following your goals blindly is a waste of valuable time, energy, and resources.
Do you often second-guess yourself? Do you feel as if you’re running the hamster wheel of ambition? Is the faster you chase after your goals, the further they pull away?
If this sounds familiar, asking yourself these specific questions frequently will help you determine whether you are on the right path. Answering these questions can redirect your goals and help you rediscover your confidence to draw closer to your intended destination in life.
Should I Hang Up My Hat?
Being passionate about your goals shows you believe in yourself and expect more from life. It shows your bar of ambition is high, and that’s a noble way to live. However, the same ambition can also trap you if you’re not careful. If you’re permanently fixated on chasing your goals without frequently evaluating their validity, you can end up not making progress.
If your goals no longer support your purpose, remaining adamant about them is a waste of valuable time and energy. Last year I tried the productivity routine that many self-help gurus swear by. I began waking up at 5 Am. Two weeks in, I gave it up. It wasn’t for me.
I’d spend my day groggy-eyed, my productivity dipped, and no matter how much caffeine I drowned myself in, I couldn’t focus. When I gave up waking up at 5 Am, I became more focused, energetic, and clear-headed. And because I sleep longer, am more productive.
Every so often, stop and reflect on your objectives. The last thing you want is to dedicate your willpower to a futile course. Right? The sooner you acknowledge that something isn’t working, the quicker you can figure out your next step.
At times, giving up isn’t a bad idea. It can be the channel that opens new doors.
How Can I Ensure That I Fail Forward?
Anybody who accomplished anything worthwhile stumbled on their fair share of failures. They are part of the package. However, how you react to failures determines whether or not your goals succeed. You always have two options.
You can stall and lick your wounds, in which case you only end up stuck. Or you can use the lessons to better yourself. In an interview, T.D. JAKES, Founder of The Potters House, told a story of how his son expressed fears of failing in a particular goal.
He calmed his son’s fears by saying, “If it’s not the thing, it’ll be the thing that leads to the thing.” This quote from Oprah Winfrey’s sums it up beautifully;
“There is no such thing as failure.” “Failure is just life trying to point us in another direction.” Oprah.
It doesn’t matter how fiercely you chase your goals. At some point, you’re bound to stumble. To attain your purpose, you must embrace failure because nothing good comes easy. Instead of allowing it to stop you, learn to fall forward. This means using the lessons gained to propel yourself forward.
How Can I Increase My Chances of Success?
You’ve probably heard it said that you should never have a plan B because it makes you less committed to plan A. The truth is, success isn’t guaranteed. There’s no way of knowing what will bring you the outcome you expect. This is precisely where options come in handy.
It’s not only wise to have alternative options, but it’s also advisable. When speaking to Entrepreneur India, Raghunandan Saraf, the CEO of Saraf Furniture, explained that having a plan B is the confidence that pushes plan A to materialize.
“It need not necessarily be a replacement or an alternative but an addition or an expansion. It is the extension of current process and opinions, applicable in the succession of operations & resources,”
This doesn’t just apply to business; it works for your personal goals too. Having a plan B gives you confidence and helps you be flexible, and increases your chances of achieving what you desire. Having options gives you a sense of security and strengthens your confidence and keeps you motivated.
You can focus better if your hands aren’t tied to a single option.
Does this enrich me?
Having grown up in a slum, Kennedy Odede had a passion for his neighborhood. His goal was to give people access to clean water and offer health services to slum residents. Little did he know that by committing to this noble mission, the entire trajectory of his life would change.
Doors he’d have never thought possible opened up for him.
If you want to commit to a specific goal, you should first determine if it fuels you emotionally and enriches your life. This is the only way to ensure that you remain focused for the long haul. Think of your relationship with your goal as symbiotic, so to speak.
The reward need not be monetary, but you should find pleasure in what you choose to do with your life.
If you have a goal that you find worthy of you as a person, a goal that lifts you with joy at the thought of it, believe me you’ll reach it. Earl Nightingale
A worthy goal needs to be an endeavor you can joyfully devote yourself to for the rest of your life. Whatever the nature of your ambition, it should connect you to a higher purpose and fuel you for the next twenty, thirty, or forty years. Otherwise, what you’re pursuing becomes a hobby and not a goal.
A life goal is different from a hobby. Hobbies are created, switched, and dropped all the time but your goal becomes the essence of your life.
Following your goals blindly is a waste of valuable time, energy, and resources. If you want to find success and find fulfillment, you need to access the validity of your goals frequently.
Stop and reflect on whether your aims are still worth it or if you need to carve out a different path. Evaluate your mistakes and see how you can use them to propel yourself higher.
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