I felt like we’ve zipped through these stages. I can’t believe that we’re finally at the stage where we can start making changes based on the deep work we’ve been doing through an exhaustive list these past few weeks. Per my usual, if this is your first time here, just like the title says, for the month of May we are working on Aggressively Editing Our Lives. Essentially it means taking a deep dive by working through a worksheet (I will provide it at the end of this blog) to helps us identify what we have going on in our lives right now, so we can figure out where we want to be and what we want to do. You can check out last week’s blog on The State of Clarity; which ask the question; Where Do I Want To Be In Life? HERE, and the first week’s blog on The State of Uncertainty; which ask us Where Are You At In Your Life Right Now? HERE.
The focus for the worksheet last week was to gain some clarity and in order to do this, we had to ask ourselves where we wanted to be? For some of you this may have been fun, challenging, or it may have brought up some guilt. For example, maybe you know where you want to be but you’re afraid to admit it to yourself or others because of your current circumstance (a family), and you fear that chasing your dreams will seem selfish. Maybe you have no idea what you want out of life, or maybe this activity was your opportunity to really think outside the box and allow yourself to be open to the concept of all possibilities. Either way, I just hope you actively participated and wrote something down on your list.
If you completed the worksheet from the past two weeks, then this week we’re going to start setting some goals. Therefore the focus is Goal Setting. I took an interesting approach with this step because it’s not typically what people would do when they choose to set goals. I’ll be transparent, I mentioned during the first and second week that I created the worksheet back in December, and after reviewing it (nearly six months later) I asked myself, why did I take that approach with goal setting? But you all know I like a challenge so I’m putting my own spin and approach on what goal setting looks like.
Often times when we set goals we create a list of 3-5 things that we want to work on but my approach is similar to a root cause approach. When you set goals that you don’t accomplish, what are some reasons for not accomplishing those goals? Two things that come to mind are potential barriers; sometimes we don’t identify them before we choose to set goals. Another would be working towards eliminating those barriers before we start to set goals. Look at it this way, maybe you want to go back to school but financially you’re not in the position to do so, but you may still add it to your list of goals because you want to find a way to make it work (and maybe you can) but if you don’t, it was yet another goal on your list that went unaccomplished.
Here’s what I think we can do to keep from going down that same road of not accomplishing things. Based on the list you created last week, identify some of the barriers (in bold below) for each of them. And for those barriers you identified, list what steps you can take to start eliminating those barriers (in italics below). Let’s use the list that we worked on last week for our visual example:
- Enrolling in school—-> Does not fit into my current schedule—->Enroll part-time
- Working on your finances—–> Too many bills—–> Pick up a part-time job
- Maybe you want to work on being more confident—–>Not sure where to start—->Seek therapy
- I want to talk to my boss about a promotion because I’ve contributed a lot this year and earned the company more money and cut some cost—–> Not sure how to have this convo—->Seek advice from friends
Do you see where I’m going with this? The purpose is to identify which goal is more attainable for you at the moment so you can begin to work on it by identifying and eliminating barriers. By not identifying and eliminating barriers during your goal setting process, you’re potentially creating a recipe for failure. So for the WORKSHEET. This week, you will be working with two pages 3-4. You’re identifying the barriers for the list from last week (on page 3), and then identifying ways to eliminate those barriers (on page 4). Remember take as long as you want, this is not a race.
Also, if you’re still working on week one and/or week 2 that’s not a problem. Go at your own pace, this is not a race, it’s your race. So you’re not competing with anyone except yourself. If you’re still scratching your head about how goal setting and identifying and eliminating barriers relate to each other, I’m always here for questions if you have any. Drop me a line, let me know what this process has been like for you so far.
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