Monday, December 08, 2014

Goals and Change

"Goals allow you to control the direction of change in your favor." - Brian Tracy

After I read this yesterday, I buried it in the back of my mind, the place I keep quotes which pique my interest a bit but do not really seem like something I would write down or post.  It sat there all yesterday as I walked through the day, quietly percolating its way through my consciousness.  And then, when I needed a quote, it reappeared.

And made me think all the more.

I have written - perhaps more extensively than I had intended -  about goals, in general and specifically my own.  As I have said in times past, goals are somewhat difficult for me:  I either set too many or set them too high or I fail to set them at all.  And even when I do, it often feels as if they are in a sort of isolation from both other goals and the rest of my life.

But this quote puts them in a slightly different context.

Goals, at least per this quote, are not just things to set and do.  Goals are something which are addressing a need which is already present, a need to grapple with life - and specifically the changes of it.  Life is changing -sometimes it seems it is changing faster than ever.  But goals, suggests Tracy, allow us to channel that change somewhat, to move the needle in a direction where we are heading instead of being driven like a ship before the storm.

Goals can anchor us - they place us solidly in the things which we think are important and have merit in our lives, the things we believe we should be spending our lives on.  At the same time goals allow us to direct that change that we see around us:  if we are placed in a stream which is moving and flowing (which we all are), goals help us to move towards one channel or another.

I do not know that goals will instantly become easier for me to set for this coming year, as I always tend to struggle with them.  But thinking of them as controlling direction instead of mere endpoints will certainly change how I look at them.

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