After that Christmas wish yesterday, I promised that we would get back to goal setting for the New Year today. And I am keeping that promise.
But first…here is something to consider: you have eight slices of your pie of life (Wheel of Life): career, finances, environment, family/friends, love, leisure, health and growth. Do you actually need goals for all of them?
When I was first exposed to the Wheel of Life, it was a self-development course at the mental health day center following my breakdown/depression after my miscarriage. The instructor specifically told us to identify just one area of our lives that we felt needed work and to write goals for that one.
I did three (can you say Type A over-achiever?). Those three were related though: career, finances and most importantly environment. In that year, I managed to get an apartment for just me and PanKwake (getting out of an unsafe environment), more than quadruple my income and begin work as a chef. So you can’t argue with success.
Since then I have set goals in ALL eight categories…BUT in this new more Zen method of goal setting…no more. There is no point in having goals in areas that simply are not important to you at this time in your life. So this year, I will not be writing goals for: health (for a woman my age I ain’t doing so bad), leisure (honestly, I don’t have much time for it anyway) and growth (because frankly I do this one so naturally that it is ridiculous to write goals for something that you are 100% satisfied with).
Of the five remaining areas, I will be setting two different types of goals…soft goals for things like love and family/friends and more concrete task oriented goals for career, finances and environment (ironic that it is once more those same three areas that I began this journey with). But we will look at those hard goals tomorrow. For today, let’s focus upon one set of ‘soft’ goals…love.
For much of the past six years that I have been setting goals, love has been one of those red areas. Whether I was in a failing marriage or alone, it was always red…and I felt completely helpless to actually do anything about it. I suppose you could set goals about joining dating sites or something, but I have always felt that love just happens. You can’t really plan it.
Only once in those six years was I actually in a relationship…2014. And I set all these lofty goals about being there for him, being a good sub. It was over within six months.
So in 2015, I decided that my pie only had seven pieces…no love, no goals. Then about three months into the year, I changed my mind. But not in the traditional way. I decided that I would focus on LOVING MYSELF. I wrote goals about doing things that would lift me up, make me feel better about who I am.
You know what happened? Not one but two kick-ass men came into my life as friends (well, back into with Captain America) and they were attracted to that new, more confident me.
So this year, am I setting more of those ‘relationship’ goals about being what they need me to be, the perfect sub, whatever?
NO!!! I am setting more of the same…goals about working on me.
Because you have NO POWER to change another person. You have no right to even set goals involving another person. Even setting goals as a couple can be intensely tricky…tried that once with the preacher…the year we separated…
When it comes to relationships, whether it be love or family and friends, the only ones in control are the goddess (of love) and Fate. I love this saying…
And the cold, hard truth is…you can never really know which.
No relationship lasts forever. Think about it…even if it is perfection, it changes over time. Hopefully for the better, but it still changes. What’s more, all relationships end one day…even if when you or that person dies.
So, yes, I am blessed right now to have two amazing men and a sweet protege in my life. But I can’t know for sure if they will be in it next year. And if I base my ‘love’ goals on them then I am setting myself up for failure, disappointment and pain…like I did in 2014.
No, this year my love goal is simple…
I will learn to forgive.
Not because they (and there are LOTS of they’s in my life…exes, sperm donors, friends…) deserve it, but because I do. Because I do not want bitterness and hatred controlling me. Because I am better than that. Just for me…
Now will that affect my relationship with Thor and Captain America? Damn straight it will. Make things much easier and perhaps avoid disaster.
But even if one of them or both are no longer in my life…that goal will be worth attaining.
How’s that for a soft goal? Simple…no idea even how to do it. But that is why it is about the journey and not the destination, folks.
Tomorrow, we will look at more concrete goals and how those goals might differ a bit. Hope you will join me then.