Goals are an incredibly meaningful part of any plan for success. Whether we are pursuing improvement in health, happiness, business, relationships, or seeking craft mastery we NEED goals to help us measure our progress. There is no limit to the number of successful people who preach and teach the importance of goals: often attributing large amounts of their success to setting and accomplishing goals along the way. Goals may grow or change; goals may be hit or may be missed completely; however, goals are a necessary part of any and all success. Goals can help us succeed for a variety of reasons; they give us a target to aim for, they motivate us along the way, they give us feedback, they allow us to measure our progress, and they help us to plan our daily actions so that we are working towards success everyday.
Life is not a race; life should not be seen as a starting point and an end point: life is more complicated than just being the line between point A and point B. Life involves ups and downs, backwards and forwards, and it involves the endless comparisons of others in relation to our own position.
Nobody knows the meaning of life, and maybe there really is no purpose at all. No one can say for sure why we are here, but one thing is for sure: we have life. We are unique beings with a unique consciousness and a unique life experience. We can not choose everything that happens to us, and there are constantly life events, out of our control, happening that affect us in different ways. We don’t choose to be alive, it just happens, so we have to ask ourselves, “Am I going to stay here where I am and let time take away everything I have, or will I use time to improve, grow, and expand my reach beyond what I can now touch?”. Goals are the tools we use to climb higher into our potential and a life without goals can be likened to a ladder without rungs: there is nothing to climb. Goals are our way to take control of the life we have been given, the way to see how far we can go.
Goals give us a sense of daily direction. When we look into our future and imagine the life we want to possess, we can draw backwards and create a roadmap to our dreams. Without an endpoint we have nothing to aim at: we are lost in the infinity of space. Goals give us a purpose in life; they give us something to work towards, they give us daily actions to ensure we are going in the right direction.
Once we can see our dream, we can start building the plan to get there. We have to see ourselves in the future the way we want to be. What do we look like, how do we speak, how do we treat others, what do we do, what have we done, what do we look like? By asking these questions and figuring out exactly what we want, we can start working backwards in steps to figure out how to get there. 30 year goals become 15 year goals, 15 year goals become 10, 10 become 5, 5 become 3 and 1, 1 year becomes months, weeks, days, hours, minutes, and seconds. Goals give us an intention for every second of the day. Suddenly our meaningless existence has meaning: suddenly our life has a purpose, now we can start moving.
As we climb our ladder of success we step on the goals we built along the way, sometimes they break and we fall back down, sometimes we have to rebuild them differently. Everytime we attach a step to the ladder we learn something, we get smarter, we pick up a new trick to make it go easier next time. Setting goals and hitting them creates an environment of exponential growth: every time we achieve a goal, we learn to hit the next one faster, we get more determined and we pick up momentum that carries us along. Setting a goal and achieving it can be likened to the snowball rolling down a hill, we pick up momentum and speed every foot we move forward.
Goals are an indispensable part of success. Unless you are born fortunate enough to have a life where money is inherited and your freedom complete, you are going to have to figure out what you want in life. We must choose to take control of life, prepare for what life will bring us, build shelter to weather the storms, and set our sights on something far in the distance and aim for it with all of our focus. Our daily actions, our goals, and our dreams are the little bit of control we are given in a large and crazy world. So many things are left up to chance already. Will you allow your future to be determined at random, or will you start taking the actions to make your life into a dream?