So I’m a little sick of goals. I’ve set goals successfully and unsuccessfully many times over and frankly, I’m tired. I get too idealistic every New Year and that takes a lot of energy to keep up with. I was raised with a protestant work ethic so if I create a goal for myself, then come hell or high water (as they say…whoever they are), I’ll sweat it out until it’s achieved (or, as often, feel extremely guilty for quitting). So I really liked this idea I stumbled across where social media guy Chris Brogan talked about coming up with three words. Just three words. I can do that. The three words are a step back from goals to put some framework around the more tangible (measureable, time-bounded, realistic, blah, blah, blah) traditional goals (probably) needed to get tangible results. Read his blog, think about it for yourself, and let me know if you come up with some you like. Here are mine (for now anyway).
Wildness: I’d like to give radical a chance, to be a norm changer. It’s too easy to fall into routines, habits, and the trap of “I’m getting too old to try that.” When I hear it takes 10,000 hours to become an expert (according to Malcolm Gladwell in “Outliers”) I start to think there’s no reason to pick up new hobbies because how many years will it take me to get 10,000 hours (or even ½ that) in on anything new while I’m also keeping up with current habits (like sleeping)? To accomplish something significant (at the 10,000 hour level) would take 20 hours a week for 10 years. But the alternative is a pretty tame (read predictable, boring) life given that I haven’t already developed a diverse and surprising array of experiences and talents.
Tribe: I believe relationships are critically important to quality of life. I’m an extrovert and have found I simply perform better and am happier when I’m connected. I became a runner (labeled by habit, not speed) and stayed one with the help of several running partners. I brainstorm better out loud and a little encouragement is a great motivator. So I want to keep asking myself “who’s my tribe” (and there may be several different ones) and invest in, seek diversity in and build stronger connections with them.
Reduce: Reduce consumption, reduce noise, reduce stress, guilt, clutter, worry, expectations, and so much more. This is the simplification kick I’ve been on and yet it takes it to deeper levels by thinking of it in this broader context. And maybe it should include reduce goals.