In light of the high number of comments I’ve received over the past two days about the two articles about dreams and goals that I’ve posted this week, today I’m sharing an article about goals from a few months ago. I believe it’s a good way to wrap up the conversation about both goals AND dreams as I’m of the belief that dreams are essentially nothing more than long-term goals.
Just in case you may have missed the two articles I’ve referenced above, here are the links – if you’re interested in catching up:
Note: The following article was originally posted on Acceler8Success Cafe on June 29, 2022. It’s shared again today with slight edits for relevance to the current time of year.
Treating Goals Like Utility Bills
Time appears to be flying by as it’s hard to believe we’re already two plus years removed from the first lockdown and didn’t we just celebrate our third holiday season since then? Now, with the end of the year less than three months away, it feels like time is flying by at break-neck speed. Do you realize we’re 22 years removed from Y2K and get this, we’re closer to the year 2050 than we are to the year 1990? Let THAT sink in!
I bring up the notion of time flying by because time doesn’t change. It’s one of the only constants we have in life with the same number of seconds in a minute, minutes in an hour, hours in day, days in a week, etc. What does change is how we make use of our time.
I believe time appears to fly by when goals are met. Achieving goals is like maneuvering from rock to rock to get across a stream with each rock getting us closer to the other side, albeit several or more feet at a time. Sometimes, it means assessing the situation and may mean changing course. The quote, “Change the plan, but not the goal” comes to mind.
With each step, stride and leap, we’re closer to the goal. As that occurs, the pace may quicken. The sense of achievement motivates us more and more. The rocks become easier to navigate. As the goal is reached, the excitement inspires us to do more, to establish another goal or set of goals, and so on.
But what happens when we miss achieving our goals? Well, time flies by even faster as time appears to be wasted. We become frustrated by the loss of time, spinning our wheels and getting nowhere. Procrastination becomes the order of the day. Denial soon sets in. Progress, or any semblance of progress is non-existent.
Before we know it, six, twelve, eighteen, twenty-four days, weeks or months fly by like a blur. If you don’t agree, think about what had been described as the “new normal” since the lockdown two-plus years ago. Many implemented a plan but have never monitored or even evaluated it. Yet, the plan remains, half-assed as it may be.
Stuck in the new normal, it’s easy to become complacent. “We’re giving it more time,” is what I’ve heard from many business owners of late. “We believe it’s working” is the follow-up statement. Based upon what? And how long is more time? Is giving it more time and belief that it’s working anything more than procrastination and/or denial? Is it anything more than just not wanting to make necessary adjustments, revisions or change? It’s no wonder time flies by.
It’d be interesting if we were to receive a monthly bill for time and goals. Think about it. Receiving a bill each month for an allocated amount of time toward the plan developed to achieve our goals would be motivating. The bill would include a payment date (achievement or progress deadline), late-fees (urgent action items) and a termination date (personal accountability, change or stop). Need an extension? Sure, with a definitive payment date and only two times within a year.
As we start to prepare for both year’s end AND the year ahead, I suggest reviewing all goals. We must be honest in our evaluation. This should include estimating what has been done to-date as a percentage and then, what must still be done as the remaining percentage. We must determine the remaining time to achieve each goal and establish firm payment or installment dates. Terminate what should be considered a closed or inactive account.
The rocks in the stream mentioned above have a similar approach as bills for goals. Each rock is in and of itself a bill. The difference is that the rocks are tangible. They’re right in front of us. We know if we don’t reach the next rock, the goal is terminated. Now, let’s apply the same theory to our future goals and to the remaining goals for 2022. After all, due dates are just ahead, and the clock is ticking!
Have a great day. Make it happen. Make it count!