“Genuine” is described in many similar ways. My favorite definitions include these words: sincere, real, honestly felt or experienced. Shouldn’t our lives be genuine and fulfilled?
Define Your Destination
Time to take some notes. At some point in life, we’ll each sit down at look back on life. When that moment arrives, where would you like to be?
What do you think will be important to you then? Family, work, friends?
How would you like to feel? At peace, fulfilled, happy?
Try to be as specific as possible. Each person is unique so our answers will be too. Your destination might focus on your hopes for your family, goals for a bigger house, charity work, your feelings, etc. Your answers should describe what you actually want, not what someone else wants for you.
There are many things in life beyond our control. Life isn’t always fair and things don’t always go as planned. By defining your destination, you’ll know what you want and work to set priorities facing that direction.
Think about your destination and the specific things that make it important to you. Based on your answers, set several life goals. These should be big “I successfully made it through my life” goals.
Here are some examples of possible life goals:
- Enjoy close relationships with my children and grandchildren while being an active participant in their lives (without intruding, of course)
- Raise my children in such a way that they will lead fulfilling lives and truly be happy
- Stay close to my family
- Save money for an adequate retirement
- Record my life history
Once you’ve defined your life goals, think about where you need to be in ten years to reach your life goals.
Define how you want your life to look at that point. Now set ten-year goals.
Examples of ten-year goals:
- Have regular time scheduled to be with my kids and make it a top priority to be there to support them.
- Attend events important to my children, husband, and family- be there with a smile when I should be
- Encourage kids to develop talents
- Save $20,000
- Record life events as they happen and at least outline life history that hasn’t been recorded
Five, Three, and/or One-Year Goals
You might want to define your destination for both five, two, and one-year goals or whichever combination works best for you. Continue the process you started above as you set goals closer to your current life.
It’s time to put those life goals into action by bringing them into your daily schedules and lives! Depending on your personality and situation, you might want to set semi-annual, monthly, weekly or daily goals. You might not. The important thing is to remember your goals as you create schedules and choose priorities.
There are countless good and positive things to be part of in life. It’s easy to get caught up in everything and make life crazy instead of fulfilling. Cut the chaos by prioritizing. If your schedule looks too busy, decide which activities will best meet your goals and don’t be afraid to say no to the rest. You don’t have to do everything. Do what’s most important and go from there.
From time to time, check out your goals again. Sometimes priorities change along with life circumstances. Change and update goals when needed.
“Regular” life takes up a lot of time. We may not feel we’re progressing toward our long-term goals every day. Throw in short-term issues that must be taken care and we have an everyday level of chaos. Add to that the crisis times that come from time to time and our goals may feel very far away. THAT’S OKAY! They’re supposed to be far away! If your biggest goal could be reached by tomorrow, you wouldn’t be defining life goals. Find joy in the successes along the way.
Live a genuine life in the direction of your goals and be present where you actually are!