Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Centering Your Goals

Are your goals centered on your purpose? 

It's easy to form a massive list of unrelated goals. Before you know it your focus is scattered across an undefined landscape. What do you do first? How do you prioritize?

The time to focus is at the start. Can you align each and every goal to your purpose, your vision? People often tell me during a workshop that it's not possible. "My supervisor gives me my goals" they might say, or "Upper management decides what our goals are and if they're not related that's my problem..."

What do you do about that?

How about making every goal centered conversation a centered conversation. Bring in your key leadership skills. Be clear about your purpose. If your boss isn't clear, ask and help to clarify (yes, you really can do this).

Get creative in your approach to your goals. If it's not aligned obviously with your vision, what ways can you move it in the direction of better alignment? How can you optimize your new goals so that they do align with your vision?

Show compassion for yourself and the source of your goals. People are usually doing the best they can with what they know how to do. Maybe it's your turn to train someone how to focus more clearly on a purpose. Or, maybe it's your turn to learn more about these new goals so that they resonate more clearly with you.

Then, show the courage it takes to stand by your purpose. If a goal is truly a roadblock to completing or realizing your purpose, how can that be good? How could that trade be acceptable. Be courageous. Take a stand. Act boldly in the direction of success.

And keep in mind the picture changes. What seems discordant today could make total sense tomorrow. Focus, breathe, connect, and serve. Center yourself and centering your goals becomes much more easy.

-- Douglas Brent Smith

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