When we are in the formative years, before age 18, our focus is usually driven by getting an education, forming relationships, and beginning to separate ourselves from a family unit, with parents and siblings, to learn how to create our own adult life. For many, this also means the beginning of adult responsibilities, getting a job, perhaps going into a permanent relationship with someone, starting a family, and discovering changes in our outlook on life as we begin to mature. We have dreams and plans; some of which work and some which do not, and our opinions of what these should be change over time.
For those who have little or no experience with setting written goals, this can seem to be a formidable task. Yet, the rewards of taking the risk to decide what you want and how you would like it to look can be amazing. Using the simple, who, what, when, where, how and why method will cover most of what you need to evaluate. Remember that you are seldom alone in the decision-making, so those who are important need to be brought into the process.
Let’s say for example that you are planning on having 3 children. You are currently in a 700 square foot apartment with two bedrooms and one bath. You may decide that within five to six years, you will need to move to a larger space and get a second car. This will have a large financial impact and will need careful resource management to work for your family unit. Before the children are born, there are typically just the two of you and perhaps a pet or two. After the children are born, there are usually 18 years of specific responsibility for each child. Life balance becomes skewed during these years as you struggle to balance home and work. This is a critical time to have an annual goal setting plan, making periodic adjustments. You may decide that your plans are too narrow in scope or too broad to see specific achievement. Frequent reviews will help you assess and make changes as necessary.
Let’s move forward in time to high school or college graduation for the last child at home. This places many in their forties or early fifties. At this point, careers may be reaching their zenith and you begin to think – what next? Retirement may be nowhere close in your horizon, yet goals, objectives and action plans are critical for this next phase of life. Time, as one valued resource, may become your friend for the first time in many years. You and your spouse can focus on each other more, and at the same time, begin to look at what makes you happy as individuals.
Again, thinking about these things and setting goals is very important. You may have a hobby you have not been able to do anything about due to financial responsibility for children. What could it look life one year from today if you decide to devote yourself to becoming more skilled? You both may see travel to places you have always wanted to go as a goal. You may view community involvement as something you actively want to pursue, either as a volunteer or in a paid capacity. You might want to look at a new career, using your talents to build a business of your own. You may decide on an expanded spiritual journey, either locally, somewhere across the country or elsewhere in the world.
Life balance is a journey over time; the goals you set at twenty will typically not be the same as those you set at fifty. Yet the energy you devote will speak volumes in the positives you achieve over time. If you have not explored this kind of goal setting, there is no time like the present! You will be glad you did.
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/7867121