It was a Saturday night and my partner was looking at my vision board from 2015. On it, I had a list of goals that I wanted to accomplish that year. It was actually a carryover from 2014, but because I hadn't accomplished my goals in 2014, I just scratched out the four and put a five and used the same list, with a few modifications, in 2015.
“Well you've gotten about half of them done,” he observed. I got up off the floor from where I was doing my yoga and took a look at my list. It had been a while since I really studied it, although clearly it's still up on the wall for a reason. I decided that maybe it was time for me to re-examine those goals and my reason for still having them up there. I learned a few things about myself in the process.
First and foremost, I got to congratulate myself for having accomplished over half of those goals. Yes, there are still a few that stand out as areas that I am continuing to work on. But, for the most part, I was feeling pretty good about what I had accomplished in the past couple of years. What was even more surprising to me is how some of those goals that mattered so dearly to me in 2014 and 2015 really don't pertain anymore. For example, one of my goals was to get a literary agent. I did get an agent for a book in 2016, but that never went anywhere. That turned out to be quite fortunate for me because in the process of writing that book, I realized I didn't want to be writing that book!
The process of looking at my goals from 2 to 3 years ago also allowed me to really get clear on what matters to me most and why those goals matter to me, especially the ones that I have not quite been able to cross off the list yet. For example, as I shared in last week's blog post, I've wanted to write books and speak since I was a child. Yet, the publishing industry has changed so much in the past decade that the dream that I had a childhood is really not feasible anymore. Furthermore, when I dove into why I wanted that dream, it really wasn't about writing books and speaking – well it was – but more importantly, it was about the freedom I thought that I would get if I lived the lifestyle of an author. Yet, when I talk to some of my friends who are authors, that's not the lifestyle they describe at all. Lessons learned: sometimes your dreams have to evolve as the scenery changes.
Perhaps the most important part of this process was looking at the goals that still matter to me, but I have not quite achieved yet. The one that really sticks out for me is this one: “A cup that continually runneth over as I make and take time to recharge, renew, reinvigorate, and rest.” That is very much still one of my top priorities in life, and yet, it is also one of the things that has been most challenging for me as a recovering perfectionist, over giver and over doer.
I think many women can relate to that one. Even though we know better – even if we've come far enough on our journey to know that we can't serve from our reserves, and that we are worth our own time and energy, it's still a struggle sometimes as life's many demands are always asking for our time, energy, and effort. Many of us were raised in an environment where the word “no” was not part of our vocabulary. We were never taught how to set healthy boundaries. We thought we always had to say yes, with a smile on our face, and make sure we gave our very best to everything. But if you're anything like me, you've learned several times the hard way that you do, in fact, need to make sure your cup is overflowing and you're serving from your overflow and not your reserves. That was the whole point offering you The Well-Nourished Goddess online event – to help all of us remember that very important fact: you have to take care of you.
As we move into October, now is a wonderful time to take a long, hard look at the goals you set for yourself – this year, 5 years ago, maybe since childhood – and are still holding onto. You may find that you’ve met some of these goals. If so, congratulations! If not, ask yourself:
- Why did I set this goal? Why was it so important to me? Was it even my heart’s desire to begin with or something someone told me I “should” do?
- Is this goal still relevant? Does it matter? Does my heart still say, “Yes!” when I think about this goal? If not, let it go.
- If your heart still says, “Yes!,” why have you not been able to achieve it thus far? Have you not devoted enough time and effort to it? (more on this in today’s video) Have other things gotten in the way? Has it just not been the “right time” yet?
- Why is this goal still so important to you? What will achieving this goal bring to your life that you wouldn’t have otherwise? Are there other ways to achieve that outcome besides this particular goal (see today’s video for more on that one)?
- Are you ready to re-commit to making this goal happen? If not, why not? If so, then it’s time to make a plan for baby stepping your way to this big goal.
As you do this process, you may find that goals/desires you used to think were important no longer matter, and that’s okay. Our goals and desires change and evolve as we do. You may also find that you are more committed than ever to making something happen. Great! Now is the time to make a plan to go get it! But most importantly, I’m hoping this process will help clarify for you what’s really important to you so that you can begin to re-organize and re-prioritize your time around making your heart’s desires come true.