Connect to Your Goals
    Connect to Your Goals

    “Just relax and have fun dang it!” Not the best logic for planning a truly relaxing vacation, but I didn’t seem to recognize that at the time. I’d noticed my friend had been stressed, so I was trying to encourage her to plan a relaxing weekend in the mountains. However, I kept nagging her about it and not really offering my own opinion about a plan because I was trying to avoid forcing my preferences. It seems obvious now, but I didn’t notice how my “encouragement” was turning into pushing so hard that it became a source of stress. This is only one example of how I’ve gotten into trouble not paying enough attention to how other people are feeling in the moment. I don’t purposefully see people react and ignore it. I just get so focused on my goal (like planning a vacation) that I don’t even notice how it is affecting others. How can I be more with people in the moment?

    My current goal is to increase my empathy. Since it isn’t my intention to ignore others, I’ve set a specific goal to find simple situations in which I can be more aware of others. It turns out that the blog can be one of those situations. I’ve been told by several people that my writing is really dense … so instead of a really in-depth post this week I tried to distill the gist of my description of how mindsets lead to success into a haiku (3 line poem with 17 syllables). 

    You can develop
    No failures - just challenges
    Approach goals you want

    I can even use this haiku as a tool to approach my goal of increasing my empathy. I have a growth mindset, which means I know I can improve. I also know that even as I’ve been working on this I’ve made several more mistakes. However, a growth mindset allows me to think about them as challenges that I can overcome in the future. Finally, I know that approaching what you want (e.g. “pay more attention to people”) instead of avoiding something you don’t (e.g. “don’t be so tactless”) will lead to better goal attainment.

    If you have a development goal like me and know that you can grow, then commit to improving. Maybe write your own haiku to condense what may seem like a big goal into something manageable, and then repeat it to yourself for motivation. If it works, please share in the comments! If a haiku isn't for you, what are some other simple ways you can approach your goal this week?