If you're anything like me, you've set many different goals for yourself throughout your life. Some people set them every January, sometimes it is at your annual review at work, and sometimes, it is before starting the next academic year, shoot.... you may even set a goal for your day every morning. These things are all wonderful. It is important to have something to strive for and something to help keep you motivated. SMART goals are a great way to help you accomplish those things in life you want to be a part of your legacy. What happens when you reach that goal though? Do you set another one? Do you check it off your list, never to think of it again? Do you take the time to enjoy your success or immediately move on to something different, something more?
It depends on the goal you’re setting. Let’s use weight loss as an example. Many people set a weight loss goal at some time in their lives. Goal: Lose 20 pounds. So, you work at it. You decrease your caloric intake, maybe you take the stairs more often, and maybe you even join a gym. And with a few changes in your life and a lot of work, you’ve lost the 20 pounds. But then what? What comes next? Do you go back to your old routines and put the weight back on? Do you maintain your current lifestyle and current weight? Or do you set a goal for another 20 pounds down?
Maybe your goal is to excel in school and get straight A’s. You strive to be the best in your class so you can get into the best college. And then you do. So, then you work to be the best in your class so you can get the best job out of school. And then you do. So, then you work to be the best in your job so you can be promoted. And then you are. So then.... then what? What comes next? What do you live for now?
Here’s the real question.
Are you chasing happiness in these goals?
Let me give it to you straight. Happiness does not come from a number on a scale, it does not come from an accolade, and it does not come from a diploma on a wall. Does it feel good to accomplish your goal? Absolutely. Revel in that success. But please do not depend on that success for your happiness. When you live that way you continue to chase the next big thing. You continue to hope that IF I accomplish ____, then I’ll be happy. Then I’ll feel fulfilled. Then I'll find my peace.
It doesn’t usually work that way though. You must learn to appreciate the journey. Appreciate the blessings you’re given along the way. Find your happiness without success. Without consequence.
Before you set your next goal, sit down, and really reflect on what enough is. What are you fighting for? What are you willing to give up in the process? Dolly Parton is credited for saying, "Don't get so busy making a living, you forget to make a life." This is along the same lines. Don't be so busy chasing the next goal, that you forget to appreciate what is right in front of you. You ignore all the success you've already had. It is the little things that make life big. Don't ever lose sight of that, among your biggest dreams and your smallest accomplishments lie your truest path to happiness.
I want to know. What is your version of “enough”? If you don't know, I'd love to help you figure it out. Reach out to me and let's create a strategy for you!