January, a confusingly splendid time of year. You’re still feeling accomplished for having simply existed for another year, perhaps a bit let down that you didn’t do more. You give yourself a good shame on you, pull yourself together, and you look ahead. You plan. You set goals. You dream to exist better for the next twelve months.
The problem is that we lie to ourselves. We have good intentions, but very few of us can actually say that we reached our goal and that we reached it in its initial time frame. I say, don’t set them. This year, don’t set a goal.
Over the years, goal-setting has been given a negative connotation. People hear the word, “goal” and they think grueling, impossible task. We can blame the hipsters or the scholars for making fun of those who can and can’t achieve their goals – the common folk. But in reality, goal-setting in itself became conducive to its efforts simply because we didn’t follow through with our goals as much as we set them. So, stop.
This year, how about creating magic?
After all, isn’t that what a goal is all about? To dream the impossible dream, fight the unbeatable foe, to bear with unbearable sorrow, or to run where the brave dare not go? See Elvis’ rendition below if that’s not hitting home for you.
Don’t make this year about setting goals. Make it about the captivating, the sublime, the charming, the impossible. Make a little magic, People.
You don’t go to a magic show to achieve something. You go there to be amazed; to feel and wonder. We thrive on emotion – especially in the marketing world. So no more sales goals. Instead, ask yourself how your marketing can influence people the same way you are compelled to do what you dream.
Who put this 12-month time frame on our goals anyway? It’s just another year, another calendar, a new number – stop thinking January is so special. If you want to achieve something, you need to have the will to make your own rules and to bend them when necessary.
Think of this January as a sort of renaissance. Don’t just exist this year, be more. Zero in on exactly what you want and use this year. Stop piddling around and hawk up. Hawks are known for their decisiveness, their ability to strike their prey in a flash and to look good while doing so.
When we think of a hawk, we think of those in-flight clips we see on National Geographic or Discovery. We see their highlight reel, the most magical parts of their existence. But if you look alongside any rural highway (especially around the Flint Hills), you’ll see a hawk every few miles, perched up on a cattle pen’s fence post or bobbing on a tree limb, scoping out the essence of their existence – their next meal. They exist to exist.
You need the same mindset. Don’t go overboard with your goals, just choose a few that you want to achieve and exist to achieve them. Organize your life to revolve around these goals.
Use the little “goal setting thing” along the way of your dream. Use it to clean out your closet, refinish your deck, aerate the lawn – the trivial things.
The most important thing you can do is to figure out exactly why you are setting a goal.
What is its real benefit? Do you even need to do it? Do you even want to do it? How did this goal come into your life?
When you get down to the end of your life, it’s not going to be about how great of a goal-achiever you’ve become or how great your highlight reel looks. It will be about what you did to make other’s lives better – how did your existence improve other’s and how much you enjoyed doing this.
Use your talents.
Don’t rely on others to inspire you or to do the work for you.
Make your magic.