In a recent post, I suggested a ‘Big Picture’ vision is best supported by goals that have small progressive steps rather than big single goals.
A reader emailed me and posed the question, “Surely it would be better to have big goals even if I don’t achieve them?” That way I’d at least get closer?”
It’s a good question, but in my experience working with clients, we are more likely to become discouraged and are likely to give up when we lose belief in our ability to achieve those goals. The exercise then becomes counterproductive.
Our Vision, the big picture motivates us. But we have to feel we are progressing, which is why our Big Picture coupled with an attainable plan is vital. The two complement each other.
A second reader shared a very common challenge. “Even when I set doable goals, I get disheartened when they go off track. How can I avoid this?”
The first thing to understand is that things rarely go exactly as planned.
When you set off on a journey, the conditions may suddenly change. For instance, in 2019, who knew the pandemic would turn the world upside down? We either give up or take a step back, re-evaluate and change course.
Similarly, when the vehicle we are travelling develops a fault, and needs to be repaired before we can continue. We can choose to blame ourselves for the holdup or we can acknowledge that setbacks are all a part of our journey.
I suspect the problem might be that you feel as though you’ve failed. Remember, the person giving up smoking who gives way to temptation and has a cigarette after a week can choose to believe they can’t give up, or can choose to look upon it as a setback and carry on with their goal.
If halfway through January, you are already struggling to achieve your goals, ask yourself these two questions.
Who will you be in 2022?
What are you committed to improving?
These are within your control.
In my next post, I’ll discuss the ingredients for connecting with finding a sense of purpose.
Let me know your ‘Big Picture’ for 2022.