27 March 2014
Living In The Middle Of Big Goals
When you begin a long term goal, I think there is always this secret hope that somehow, miraculously, this goal you anticipate will take you a good year or so will magically fall into place on it's own in three or four weeks max.
One thing I have learned this year about myself is that I like to chose or be given a goal or assignment and then find the most expeditious way to complete it. I like to get the "satisfaction of completion" phase happening as quickly as possible. This would explain why I don't enjoy very much long-term projects that can't be quickly accomplished in a few hours time. While I might enjoy doing those things, I just am not drawn to them because of the time they take and the amount of attention to detail they require over a long period of time. This tends to frustrate me a bit or create a massive disinterest at some point.
I have entered into quite a few long-term goals this year. In fact my biggest goals are things that will stretch throughout the year and I don't have any guarantees that they will be able to be completed by the end of the year. So here I am at the end of the first quarter of 2014, having to learn new patience for living in the middle of my big goals.
Have I seen some improvement, progress? Yes absolutely. But I also see all that still needs to be done. I have seen my progress slip and even backslide during certain weeks. That can be incredibly discouraging when you are trying for something that you already know is going to take a long time. There have been moments where I just wanted to throw in the towel when it seemed temporarily that nothing was getting better. Thankfully as I've pushed forward I've seen new improvements, found new approaches that help me continue my progress and most importantly I've developed some staying power, through habit building, to stick with my efforts.
Perhaps that patience and staying power is the most important thing I have to gain, more important than my progress towards the completion of my specific goals. Learning to do things that challenge me in new directions forces me to use and build new muscle where I didn't have it before. Just like that is important when working out the physical body it is important in our soul development too -- and at times both are annoying and irritating.
So here I am in the middle of crossing the wide sea towards my goals. I can't see either coast yet, but I know if I keep rowing I'll get to where I want to go eventually. Staying out here in the middle certainly isn't satisfactory, so more, consistent paddling needs to be done. I will paddle my best today and again tomorrow and the next day and see if I can pull that distant shore in a little closer to my view. Life lessons to learn.