Reevaluate Your Goals

Jennifer FlatenThis post by Jennifer Flaten

I think we all agree that goals are good. Goals help propel us or keep us on track, but unrealistic goals can stress us out.

That is why occasionally you need to reevaluate your goals, because let’s face it, life has an annoying habit of interfering with our best of intentions. It isn’t easy to change your goal, it can make you feel like you are giving up, or maybe not working hard enough, but the truth is if something in your life be it work, illness or family is making it hard for you to reach your goal, you need to account for it.

In my case, I love walking it is my favorite form of exercise. I looked forward to my walk. I used it to think, plan or simply empty my mind.

For several years, my goal was to walk 2 miles a day. Most days I came close or even surpassed-obviously easier in the warmer months, still I got close to my goal during the winter months too.

Then I P9030473had a major schedule change, I now work in an office 2 days a week, and all three kids are involved in a variety of after school activities. Now, I have a lot less time to do everything. Walking is still important, I want to reach my goal, but it getting harder and harder.

An activity that I loved suddenly became something I dreaded. I didn’t relax on my walk I spent all the walk thinking about how I was going to accomplish all my other tasks that I could be doing if I wasn’t on this walk.

Not good. So, I walked less, but this made me feel lazy because I wasn’t meeting this goal…a goal I knew I could meet. It was becoming stressful.

So, I changed my goal. It is winter in Wisconsin. It is cold and it gets dark early, so I gave myself permission to reset my goal from 2 miles a day to a half a mile a day. That way if I missed a day, for whatever reason, I could surely make it up another day.

Instantly, my walk returned to its calm oasis that I looked forward to.

How do you feel about goals?

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8 Responses to Reevaluate Your Goals

  1. Mike Staton says:

    Love this post, Jennifer. I enjoy walking too. Try to make a 30-to-45 minute walk three or four times a week. The evening is perfect in the winter… I can see all the houses decorated in their Christmas garb. Of course, it ain’t as cold in the Vegas valley in the winter as in Wisconsin.

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  2. Setting goals can be a good thing, but it’s important to realize that they may not always be accomplished. Good luck with yours.

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  3. Doris says:

    Goals are just that, a choice for an action we want to accomplish. To be able to say, this is not the choice anymore makes for a less stressful mind, as you so wonderfully wrote. Nicely done. Doris

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  4. sstamm625 says:

    Great post, Jennifer. I needed a reminder that it’s okay to reevaluate goals and change them. I can relate to the part about your walk becoming stressful instead of peaceful, until you gave yourself permission to change your goal. So much of the stress we experience is due to our own inability to change our expectations. I’m glad you let yourself reevaluate your goal and that you shared this story with us.

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  5. Great post Jennifer. I don’t feel as well if I don’t get my daily exercise in. I, too, walk 2 miles a day generally. It’s easy in the summer at the lake and in the fall here at home. But now that the Wisconsin weather has hit hard I’ve not been walking for fear I’ll fall again and I sure don’t need another concussion. My doctor and I talked about it and she suggested cross-country skiing, which I love but hadn’t thought about. Also swimming, which I can do at a high school about ten miles from my home. So I’ve been doing some reevaluating too. I was becoming stressed out because I didn’t have as much energy, not the kinds of stress you face, but stress, all the same. Good luck with your solution and acceptance of what will be. It’s hard to learn, but I’m in the same boat, so I can empathize. Thanks for sharing!

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  6. Wranglers says:

    Goals are important. You make a good point our goals are sometimes in flux. I reevaluate my goals regularly to compensate for what life throws at me.

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  7. Nancy Jardine says:

    I’m a complete believer in resetting our goals, Jennifer, if they are becoming burdensome to achieve- though I would be giving them a good try before any change is made (as you have done). I think you’ve done theright thing – after all a goal is only achieved if you are comfportable and not stressed by it.

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  8. Excellent and inspiring post, Jennifer! I just recently re-set goals for writing in 2015. I burned out doing “other people’s stuff” in 2014 so in 2015 I’m re-focusing on my own writing and cutting back on the “work writing.” Although it will affect my bottom-line in the short run, I”m hoping to increase my book sales, write more books, and help my husband promote his business so hopefully, in the long run, the re-setting of goals will be profitable. We all only have so many hours in the day and at times so instead of beating ourselves up for what we can’t or didn’t do, the time comes to re-evaluate as you did. Best to you!

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