Letting Go and Moving On

Sometimes things happen out of the blue and you end up losing baggage that you didn’t even know that you had.  You know what I’m talking about….that feeling of “ahhhh” and “what the heck just happened?” all at the same time.  The same happened to me recently and I’m still not quite sure what happened, but I’m very glad that it did.  It’s a confusing state of thoughts and emotions.

What’s interesting is that this event caused me to take a long look at my life and it helped me to realize that I’m living a lie.  I’ve been doing a disservice to myself and to everyone else by being fake and trying to be unlovable in order to keep people away from me.  Basically I tried to made sure people didn’t like me on my terms instead of on their terms.  What a miserable way to live, let me tell you.  So not only did I lose the baggage that I mentioned above, but it’s time to lose the baggage of the lies that I’m living.

I don’t know if anyone else is going through something like my own self-realization, but maybe one single person out there is.  And maybe one single person out there needs to hear this:  it’s okay.  It’s okay to finally let go and live and be who you’re meant to be.  If people don’t like the real and true you then they’re not really worth being in your life anyway.  As Oprah Winfrey says, “Surround yourself with only people who are going to lift you higher.”  Here’s to you and me, my friend.

Life Changing Goals

Today, in my Principles of Management class, we started going over a chapter regarding making goals and plans and accomplishing them.  Consequently, I have been obsessed all day with the thoughts of goals and dreams and what it truly takes to reach them.  It struck me a little while ago:  how in the world will I ever be an effective manager who not only makes goals but helps to achieve them when I can’t even do so in my own personal life??

Okay, okay… perhaps I’m being a little too hard on myself here.  I HAVE accomplished many goals in my life.  In fact, I’ve gotten through a lot of horrible situations because of my tenacity and strength.  With that being said, though, how many times have I truly sat down and gone through the entire goal process?  Hmm.  That would be never.  I have always been a “wing it” type of girl.  I’M TIRED OF WINGING IT!!  I’ve been very, very lucky that I have come so far considering winging it usually has disastrous results!

So, filled with terror from the thoughts of more winging it, I sat down with a notebook and pen and I thought long and hard about all of the things I want to accomplish in my life.  No matter how big or how small or how seemingly unreachable it was, if it came into my head, it was put down onto paper.  I don’t know about everyone else out there, but I always thought with goals you wrote them down, wrote down a few things to do that can help you reach those goals, you went about doing these things for about a week, and then, once you realized how much work it actually takes to accomplish goals, you quit.  Oh sure.  I can see you shaking your head at me making tsking noises and muttering “She sure is lazy and weak!”  Go ahead — I’m not too chicken to admit I do what the majority of people do.

Do you know how many people actually accomplish their goals?  About 3%.  That’s it.  Before you start jumping up and down patting yourself on the back because you always KNEW you were one heck of a human being, keep in mind that I’m not talking about day-to-day little goals.  I am talking about LIFE CHANGING goals.  I’m not talking about accomplishing one big goal today (or a year ago or getting ready to accomplish a big goal in a few months) and then settling down to a life of quiet complacency because “DANG IT I ACCOMPLISHED THAT GOAL BACK WHEN I WAS A YOUNGIN’!”, but am talking about accomplishing big life-changing goals on a REGULAR basis.

So, I’m issuing a challenge to myself (most importantly) and to anyone who reads this.  Before the end of the year, let’s each set at least two really big and life changing goals for ourselves.  Obviously we are all different people so these goals will vary.  For me, my most important long-term goal is to lose all of my weight, get toned up, and get active again.  I will finally have the means to get treatment for my medical condition so I CAN lose weight and I plan on taking full advantage of that.  My second long-term goal is to buy my own house or condo.  This one is a REALLY long-term goal and it will require a lot of other short AND long-term goals to be accomplished first.  But, I’m determined.  If I’m going to set the business world on fire one day, I have to do the same for my own life.

Now, how do you go through the whole goal process??  I’ll throw you a bone here — the above scenario I mentioned is NOT the proper way to go about accomplishing your dreams and goals in life.  Yeah, I was surprised too when I found that out.

1.  Write out your goals.  I would recommend that you first sit down like I did and write out all of your hopes and dreams no matter how big and small and unattainable they are.  Then you need to go through and sort them out.  ALL goals need to be SMART.

*S – Specific
*M – Measurable
*A – Attainable
*R – Relevant
*T – Time-Bound

2.  Determine how to measure your goals.  You have to be able to clearly see when you have reached your goals or otherwise what’s the point?

3.  Set a deadline for reaching your goal.  Make sure this is REALISTIC!!  Do not set yourself up for failure but do not be incredibly lenient on yourself either.

4.  Identify potential obstacles that can get in the way of you reaching your goals.  BE HONEST!  If you know you have a lack of willpower then write it down!  If your goal is going to require money being spent then write down things that could potentially happen that will take away your money.  Think of ALL possibilities (but not completely outlandish ones…)  I know (in regards to my weight-loss goal) that the holidays are HORRIBLE for me because I go crazy with all of the sweets.  It might be embarrassing to admit this, but being honest is what will help me ultimately reach my goal!

5.  Come up with ways to help you overcome ALL of the listed obstacles.  This could be support groups, accountability partners, putting aside extra money whenever possible, keeping a journal, attending conferences, learning more about your goal (such as finances), etc.

**KEEP THIS IN MIND:  This is YOUR LIFE we are talking about here.  If you want to reach your goals and dreams then you need to be willing to do whatever it takes to reach them.  A lot of us hate reaching out to others.  We hate being “vulnerable” or “needy”.  Some people hate going out into group settings (such as conferences, support groups, etc.) because of shyness or a general “I HATE PEOPLE!  GRRR” attitude.  The list goes on and on and on.  But, if you want your dreams to ultimately come true and you want to change your life, then it is time to suck it up and get out there and do what it takes.  A little discomfort for now is definitely worth you reaching your goal(s).**

6. Make a list of plans to help you reach your goals.  For instance, (again with my weight loss goal), I plan on seeing my doctor regularly for my treatments; I plan on attending Weight Watchers regularly; I plan on attending Celebrate Recovery regularly; I plan on walking and eventually going to the gym; etc.  Your plans should also have due-by dates and be achievable.

7.  Go over your list.  Once again determine your goals are MASTERful.  Make sure you are being 100% honest with yourself in each and every aspect.

8.  GET TO WORK!

9.  Monitor your plans and goals.  If you need to make changes then do so.  If you need to add in more plans, then do so.  Remember — DO WHATEVER IT TAKES TO REACH YOUR GOALS!!!  (And this does not mean to go out and hurt others or walk all over anybody you can in order to get ahead in life.  These are supposed to be life changing goals so you can live RIGHT.)

Here’s some food for thought…

“Discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishment.”  ~Jim Rohn

Do you have the discipline it takes to change your life?

Remember, your goals should be SMART: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, & Time-Bound!!

A great site, by the way, that can help you monitor your goals, dreams, and plans online is Lifetick.  They have a free version or you can pay just $20 a year for the premium version.  There are LOTS of options out there for you though!!

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