How to set goals:
I will tell you my own personal goals.
Run Antwerp Marathon with my husband by 2017
Climb Mt Kilimanjaro by 2020 ( 5898 mt)
Learn to Tango
Go for sky diving ( have fear of heights)
Obviously, I love mountains, that's where my childhood was spent. If I were to show this list, there are plenty that would call me crazy. Still others would assume that most of them were impossible goals, unrealistic for a " physically unfit " person to achieve. After all, I have undergone multiple surgeries and hormonal issues leading to tremendous weight gain. Also I am not Hans Meyer right? Hans Meyer wasn't always THE Hans Meyer . He started somewhere too.
One of my pathologies perhaps is an inability to accept what everyone else thinks is impossible. Every time I fell, beaten and bruised, I stood up for sure. I didn't really fit into any specific clique, but instead floated between groups, never exactly standing out, but not quite fitting in either.
I grew up with lot of dreams which were more imaginative rather than focused. To be honest, seeing, reading about and meeting successful people made me just imagine and live their lives without trying out much on areas that I excelled. It's about ignoring what's possible and maintaining the dream active.
As I grew, I realized that DREAMS ARE NOT ONLY TO BE SEEN, BUT, TO BE BROUGHT TO REALITY BY OWN ACTION! And that's how the few of the below Goal setting strategies got life!
Setting goals: Latch onto the impossible>
Don't limit yourself. There are plenty of people out there expecting (or hoping) for you to fail at whatever it is you want to accomplish. Set your sights very high. Of course, you have to be willing to fail. You can't have you're entire self-image depending on you accomplishing your impossible goal. Statistically, you're destined to fail. I don't want to be discouraging but that's a fact. However you do have the power to defy the average. Even if you do fail, even pushing yourself towards the impossible, makes you a much better and stronger person than you would be, had you not tried at all.
Don't let failure discourage you, but more importantly don't let it define you either !!
How to achieve impossible goals
Achieving the impossible is very easy, at least procedurally. It starts with a single step. I want the Summit. (The height of your life ) I want it really badly. For me to get up to that point, I have to start small.
1. I have to first be able to walk, then run a bit. Once I have started my run, I should maintain the speed and rhythm.
2. I should keep my eye set on that point where I want to reach.
3. There will be distractions, different point of views, discouragements, but I still have to focus on that summit of my life.
4. Days will come when your mind will question you and your ability numerous times, but you will still hold your head high with positivism till you achieve to reach your destination.
5. Never never never give up !!!!
Do you see how it works? Can you imagine the steps in your own life? Do you feel that it can be made possible ? It's a bucket list item that more often than not, never gets accomplished because the goal is too daunting, too hard, too "unrealistic." However, breaking down the impossible into a series of goals that are possible makes accomplishing the impossible easier. Break down the impossible into a series of goals that build upon the previous goal. Each goal should be unrealistic without accomplishing the previous goal. You're stair-stepping towards the impossible. You can do it!
Again a small life experience which I would like to pen down. I got an opportunity at one point in my life when I was in possession of a hi-tech bicycle. Instantly it reminded me of that small cycle which I had in my childhood and how I used to roam around , carefree all over the small town. The feeling was, as if I am the only one who knows how to ride a cycle. Coming back to present, with the cycle in front, I could just touch it and not able to ride because my knees couldn't support. At that moment I made a new summit for myself, ride the bike in 10 days. Started frustratingly slow. Went through multiple depressive stages and bouts of failure thoughts BUT continued slow and steady. Today after an year, I can proudly say that I ride around 10 km with ease and feel the same as I was a kid, that I am the only one who knows how to bicycle!!
Find your own Summit:
You might not care one bit about a huge chunk of rock in Africa called Kilimanjaro as one of my summit! You wouldn't be alone. Plenty of people would assume I'm nuts to even want to attempt it. It's too dangerous, it's too expensive, it's too this it's too that.. However, to me, it is important because I've done pretty well at being average. I've accomplished a few things I'm proud of, but there is always that nagging doubt that if I could have worked harder, been more committed or been more disciplined, I could have done more. I want to set an example for my kids that they too can accomplish the impossible, that there's no room for excuses. If Mumma can do it, so can they.
If I had given it my all and truly failed, then I can live with that. Honestly, I've never had to courage to fully test my limits. Summit is that for me. The 5985 meter peaks represent that to me!! If I make it to the top , I'll know that day, that I gave it my all. I didn't quit. I didn't shy away from an impossible goal. There would be no more second guessing my abilities. There'd be no more anxiety over if the strength of my will is strong enough. By pushing the limits you discover your limits. The only way to know what's possible is by attempting the impossible.
What about Tango ?
If you thought Kilimanjaro was ambitious, me learning to dance? That's Red Bull extreme sports territory for me! I enjoy dancing around the house or when nobody's looking. It's fun to be a bit silly and it makes the music even better. However, dancing in public or doing it "properly" scares me because I also am very self conscious, along with the health issues that surrounds me. But well, I have learnt to let go of excuses long back !
Dancing in public gives me anxiety like no mountain ever would. However, it's really important. So I figured that well, here we are again talking about the impossible right ? So OK lets give it a try. And why not ? What are the limitations? My Arthritis? My operated knees? Well yes, they are the hurdles but nonetheless what's the harm in trying out ? So what are the mental hurdles ?
Lack of confidence ?
Self doubt ?
Lack of self image?
Fear of Failure ?
And many more constant mental struggle and do's and dont's... Here again the vision of summit stood as a impossible task and I made a check list which I see everyday. Have you made a check list ? If not go ahead and do it. Mind you, write only and only one thing in that and that is “I CAN ACHIEVE” that's its, the rest will follow.
Do you want some help finding your own Summit ? Online therapy can help! At Through your Thoughts, a therapist can help you set goals, improve motivation and get you to the summit of your dreams.