Man, when I was a kid, especially late high school, I remember how important “goals” were supposed to be. We were encouraged to make goals for the day, goals for the week, goals for the year, 5 year goals… to write them all down and then come up with a plan, and check in on our progress. To write down sub-goals that we needed to achieve to meet our goals. And daily goals that would ensure we were always working on our big goals and where we wanted to be.
As a kid, you always are sort of thinking about what you want out of life. Often influenced by what you consider successful in the lives you’re exposed to. I never dreamt of having a big mansion on a coast somewhere, probably because I never knew anyone that had one. But I’m sure for some folks… that’s their goal.
Truth be told, I despised all of that. I wrote down the goals because I had to, and probably never ever looked at them again. I sorta remember what I thought my life would end up like back then. It’s pretty different than reality. I figured I’d stick together with my friends, we’d move off to a place more interesting than Ingalls, and be close enough that we could all get together after work, and just hang out and be… well the same.
Something, that of course never happened. We drifted away, pulled in different directions by people, opportunity, or just apathy. One of my favorite things is listening to stories about how people got from where they were to where they are now. It’s almost always for a reason or two or ten. But I hardly ever hear anyone who arrived where they are know, because they had specific goals and a plan they executed to get there. Maybe everyone hates goals.
Even to this day, you can ask Andrea. I hate planning things. I hate having days and weeks scheduled out in advance. And I don’t always like to talk about the future and what we’re going to do, because a lot of it never happens. I hear folks all the time talking about what they are going to do, what they’re going to buy, or what they want to create, only to never see it happen. I’m not any different than them. But I’d rather not set people’s expectations, you know.
Rather than focus on plans, goals, and destinations. I prefer to just work on my character. What is it that I like? What is it that brings me joy? What makes me the kind of person I want to be? Every little decision we make, every left or right turn we choose, leads us to where we are now. You can pick a destination in life, and try to work your way backwards to where you are now, stressing on figuring out what you need to be doing now to get yourself where you want to be THEN. Am I making all the right choices? OR… I like to think that if I try to take all the little things, and do what I think will make me happy, do the things I won’t regret, I’ll end up in a place that is perfect for me. Whether I knew it existed before or not.