While goal setting is a term that gets tossed around often as a small business owner or entrepreneur, I’ve found it to be such an individual thing to each person and how they define the idea of “goals” in their life and business. I, myself, am a compulsive list-maker and try to set goals every day, no matter how small they may be. Crossing everything off of a to-do list at the end of the day feels pretty darn good, but it’s also important for me to remember the being as much as the doing.
I think goals are synonymous with purpose, and while not everything in life needs to be planned to a tee, there is a lot of power in envisioning what you want your life to be like, and taking small steps towards getting there. I find value in not limiting goals to just work life, but also letting that intention transcend into every aspect of being. It’s just a matter of breaking down those lofty statements we often bog ourselves down with (e.g. “move to a new city”, “buy a house”, “be healthier”) into smaller, more meaningful steps that we can move towards every day.
Among one of my most handy tools is having a Weekly Priorities and Ongoing Tasks list right there alongside my daily to-do’s. I then break those priorities and tasks down to smaller details that go into my day-to-day list. That way I have a visual reference in front of me, and an easier way to qualify opportunities as they come through the door. I like to ask myself a few questions (e.g. Does this feel authentic and true to who I am? Does this opportunity excite me? Does this help me move towards one of my big goals this year?). If the answer to any of those questions is no, I find it easier to let that opportunity pass, and trust that it was the right decision for me and what shape I’d like my life or business to take.
In that sense, I see a lot of value in letting your intuition guide you, and instead of setting out to hit a handful of road markers in life, to work towards turning that intention inward and understanding yourself more. What is it you want out of life? It can be a certain amount of travel, income, and notoriety or perhaps just a certain amount of time, experiences and happiness. Either way, I find that approaching your day with intention, making decisions that are true to yourself and owning your aspirations are key to guiding you in the right direction. —Jessica
List making, planning, thinking about the future, and dreaming can be immensely gratifying and instantly satisfying. Recently, however, I’ve begun thinking more about what goals mean to me and have ultimately had a little paradigm shift in how I frame them. To me it seems that goals are inextricably linked to how we define value and self satisfaction. For that reason I’ve started to think about greater overall intention when I’m thinking of grandiose plans. Goals can be great guides but I think it’s important to remember that they are also fleeting, and that actions are what ultimately bring self satisfaction and accomplishment. I’ve found for me the power of intention is more resilient than merely goal setting and that a clear sense of self and my values is a great vehicle for achieving the satisfaction I hope to obtain with goals.
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