In Part 1 of this blog, I challenged you to stop and take a broader look at your life and your WDYWFY (What Do You Want For Yourself). I encouraged you to begin that process by taking a look at what matters most to you by identifying your top values. That process is important, not only to identify your top values, but also through realizing what isn’t in the top five. Sometimes we are spending a whole lot of time and energy on things that we later realize aren’t that important. If you’ve not had time to do that yet, here is the link where you can do that: https://www.think2perform.com/our-approach/values
Building from your values-based framework, reflect a bit and write goals for this year or this first or next part of your retirement. What do you want to have happen? I know, it’s almost February and that may feel a little like New Year’s stuff. Creating and getting clear about your goals is an important step to make your ideal life your real life! It gives your brain something to organize activity behind. Even if you can only come up with one goal you want to make happen for your life this year, go with it. I’m all for simple.
The Acid Test for Your Goals
You have likely learned about writing goals using the SMART (Specific, Measurable, Action-Oriented, Realistic/Relevant and Time-based) acronym. I encourage that, and let’s simplify that even further for use here by using an idea that I am borrowing from Doug Lennick, the CEO of think2perform:
When you think about turning your wants into goals, Doug advises applying this acid test to each goal:
Signs Along the Way
When I work with people on building what’s next, once their goals are set, I also ask them to put ‘markers’ alongside their goals. What fun things will you notice or encounter that will be evidence of moving in the direction of your goals? This is not a measurement, such as, “When I step on the scale, I will weigh 14 pounds less”. A marker happens out in the world as a result of your intention and effort, but isn’t the end goal. For example, “Someone will compliment me on how much healthier I look.” or “I will be asked to lead a retreat.”
I think of pairing markers with goals as push vs. pull. When we set a goal and work toward it, we are using effort and determination to push toward it. Markers are something we envision happening out in the future and simply show up along the way to provide evidence we’re heading in the right direction and are in alignment. They pull us forward. I think it is as important to envision out to the future and watch for those signals showing up as it is to do the work each day to make your goals happen.
Questions for You
As you arrive at your goals and markers for your year or your retirement, here are some questions to ponder:
Enjoy the gift of this year ahead of you. Taking time to think about what you want for yourself and what matters most to you, how you live in alignment, and what it will look like when you move in that new direction will help help you make meaningful use of this year in your life and in your retirement. That is my hope for you in your 2020.
…And what to my wondering eyes should appear?
When we picture being filled with awe and wonder, we often pull up the image of a child in our minds. What if we made it an active pursuit throughout life?
Think of how a moment or sight can take your breath away, even for an instant. Your mind may be set in motion assimilating how such a thing came to be. A snowflake, a child at play, the night sky, an amazing new technology, or the glint in the eye of a loved one all have the ability to fill us with surprise and marvel. We can have moments like that daily. It's there for the taking, if we intentionally choose it.
Being captivated may point us in a new direction toward an interest, person, insight, or lifestyle and change up our life going forward. How often do you take the time and let yourself go there? It turns out that simply just letting ourselves be in that space of wonder for its own sake has health benefits, too!
A feeling of surprised or puzzled interest, sometimes tinged with admiration;
or even a miraculous deed or event; to marvel.
An overwhelming feeling of reverence, admiration, fear, etc.
produced by that which is grand, sublime, or extremely powerful.
Awe and wonder can be shared emotions that promote community or connection, either with other people or with nature. Research shows it helps us let go of our individual focus and situation and see we are part of something bigger. Spending time in awe and wonder helps us express feelings of oneness with others and makes us more generous with one another according to Van Cappelin and Saroglou.
Ruth Tongen helps people plan and live meaningful, fun and healthier retirements.