Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Really Smart Moves

Over the weekend I told ken we needed to set our goals for the new year.  His response?  "Why?  We never do them anyway."

After the shock, the embarrassment, and the punch on the shoulder I gave him- I realized he was right.  We set goals together and that's about as far as it gets.  I set my own and from time to time throughout the year I remember/find them and have spurts of goal-oriented triumph.  But all in all... nothing really changes.  My goals remain basically the same year after year and although I continue to grow, adapt, and become better- I beat myself up in January for not doing so hot on my goals. 
When we were kids, as a family, we would set goals and then for a family home evening the following year we would give ourselves grades on how we think we did.  I remember always getting an "A" for the vacation category.  I set 6 goals for myself last year.  Here's my report card:

1. Be less judgmental: F
2. Let go of Stress: F--
3.  Read my stinking scriptures: C
4.  Clean the Kitchen Before Bed: F
5.  Rebuild the Savings Account: B
6.  Be transparent:  F

Hmmm... lots of Fs in there.  Even one F minus minus.  That's bad....
I'm taking a different approach this year.  I was reading in my Oprah magazine (what else is new) and I learned something very valuable:  A beret is always tres chic- especially in a print and neutral colors.  Hehehe.  Seriously though.  Martha Beck taught me that goal setting has everything to do with parts of speech.  It is better to use adjectives to set a goal rather than nouns and verbs.  She recommended using four steps.

1.  Fess up to your real desires.  Pick the biggest, most ambitious one.
2.  Imagine what your life would be like if you realized that goal.  Create a detailed fantasy about it.
3.  List adjectives that describe how you feel in your dream-come-true scenario.  Write down 3
4.  Forget the fantasy scenario.  Focus on anything that can be described with your adjectives.

Is it all a little too out there for you?  It's been an incredible breakthrough in my life.  Goals are supposed to help us reach some feeling, not some thing.  I'm still working on my adjectives.  It's HARD!  I have one: Calm.  I keep repeating the mantra "The Pleasure of Doing Nothing" over and over again in my head.  (I heard that on Eat, Pray, Love)  It's a start.  I'm not setting a goal to be lazy.  No no no.  I'm finding inner peace.  Maybe that will help me next year when I tackle World Peace.


Chris+Jules said...

I have almost (ALREADY!) given up on one of our goals. You can read them on our last post of 2010, but the one about family dinner is NOT working right now. Greta hates what we eat and she hates waiting to eat and I HATE to hear a cranky baby during my mealtime.

Cinderella, the A-Train and Our Little Caboose said...

I too have this problem...I realized this year that when I write my goals that’s all I am doing, writing them. I never accomplish them. So this year I decided to have one focus for the year and then each month set a goal for that individual month. (Like eating fewer sweets one month or reading to Noah more etc.) Hopefully I can accomplish things this year. I totally agree though, it’s all about the feeling of accomplishment, not necessarily what you accomplish. Learning you can rely on your own resolve to actually do something.

PS. I love that you read Oprah.

Karlenn said...

I'm soooo anti-resolution. I like Oprah's idea. And I also really like her magazine. I wonder what her new channel is like. The pleasure of doing nothing. I'd really, really like to try that out.

_kArLy[*] said...

just stopping by! :] good luck with your goals! how exciting!