Where do you see yourself in five years? Are the things you’re doing today going to get you there? If they aren’t, what do you need to change?
We’re all motivated by our desires. We hope, we dream, we look ahead and project a spark of inspiration onto an imagined future reality. As we set to work to create that reality to the best of our ability, we feel joy and satisfaction. We realize that happiness is directly tied to our ability to work toward the things that matter most to us. Benjamin Franklin and his fellow founders referred to this as the pursuit of happiness. We find fulfillment in that pursuit even before we reach the desired end.
In Stephen R. Covey’s book, The Seven Habits Of Highly Effective People, he reminds us to never neglect Habit 7: Sharpen The Saw.
Habit 7 is preserving and enhancing the greatest asset you have—you. It’s renewing the four dimensions of your nature—physical, spiritual, mental, and social/emotional.
“This is the single most powerful investment we can ever make in life—investment in ourselves, in the only instrument we have with which to deal with life and to contribute. We are the instruments of our own performance, and to be effective, we need to recognize the importance of taking time regularly to sharpen the saw in all four ways.” – Stephen R. Covey
How sharp is your saw? This is what personal goals are truly about—improving and enhancing your ability to perform and produce. They’re about growth. Your personal improvement begins with a close, honest look at yourself. What roles do you have and what would you like to achieve for yourself physically, spiritually, mentally, and socially/emotionally?
Find a page in your planner and create a space for your Physical, Spiritual, Mental, and Social/Emotional goals. Determine how your life would improve if you spent time focused on each of these areas. Make goals that will help enhance those aspects of your life.
Don’t make outrageous goals that will take forever to accomplish. Set small, short-term goals that you can reasonably reach. It’s fine to have huge long-term goals, but you’ll get discouraged if they are set too far in the future or if they are too large to tackle. Break your long-term goals down into smaller short-term goals, and break those smaller goals into bite-sized steps that you can schedule into your daily plans.
It sounds simple, but setting goals and working toward them is the secret to pursuing your idea of happiness. Open your planner and get started today!