Friday, September 5, 2014

Keep your eye on the long term

Recent events and this Medium post written by Gary Vaynerchuk have reminded me of a piece of advice I need now more than ever.

Keep your eye on the long term.

This week I drew a blueprint of what I envision my life to look like in the next 5 years.  I wrote out bigger goals that we want to achieve as a family and that I want to achieve personally.  It was a pretty serious journaling session, high lighters and cookies may have been involved.  I realized 2 things in doing this.  
1)  I had never done that before and 2) I am quite possibly the most impatient person on this earth.

Let's start with 1.  I had a bit of a mess of a childhood.  I spent many of my childhood years in the survivalist mindset - getting through one day at a time. Because of this, I never dreamt about much of anything.  Sure, I had the big blue sky goal every 9 year old girl has of being the next Britney Spears (pre-Oops I Did It Again), but I never actually thought about what my life would be like.  Aside from one day knowing I'd own a jet ski, of course.

In college we had those classic "draft out your 5, 10, 15 year plan" assignments.  But does anyone really take those seriously?  It's a good exercise, but it's just such a weird time to plan for so far in the future.  Now, on the brink of 25, I have a solid 5 year plan.  Is it a bit late?  Yes.  Is it too late?  Absolutely not.

5 years is a decent amount of time.  It's not in the grand scheme of things, but think about where you were 5 years ago.  A million things have changed.  In order to achieve long term goals we need a whole lot of patience and perseverance.  This sucks.  I look at a goal and want to get there as fast as possible.  Achieving goals never works this way.  It will always take time and effort and sacrifice.

Which brings me to an added number 3) document the journey.

"My dear journal"


I tend to start writing in journals and then abandon them, but this one I've stuck with.  It has everything in it from what we want for our family, what I want to achieve personally, goals we've reached, etc.  It's the one thing that helps me keep my eye on the long term.  I look through it and I'm reminded of the progress we've made thus far and that encourages me to keep going.

Keeping your eye on the prize makes all those little sacrifices along the way so worth it.

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