Almost Smart Goals: Your Goals Don’t Have To Be Specific (1 of 6)

What are your goals?  What three things do you want most in life?

When my friend asked her 7 year old this, her daughter had started answering before my friend had finished the question. She spoke instantly and doubtlessly.
“Be a princess, live on farm, have a hundred horses.”

It is surprising, impressive  and a little bit intimidating to watch someone reach into their mind and instantly verbalize desire so simply and finally. And it is powerful to know what you want, to name it and to pursue it. Being an “adult”, I frequently find this hard and sometimes impossible.

For some things it is really obvious, I’m going to watch some more episodes of Outlander tonight and eat chocolate, which moves me towards my goal of eating all of the chocolate and watching all of the Outlander series. My definite steps are my definite goals.

On another note I’m reading Wittgenstein, I don’t really know why, but I’m interested in infinity and logic at the moment and a random comment in an Amazon review lead me there. I read a bit, don’t hugely understand it, get a bit bored, but something keeps bringing me back, there is something there, an itch.

Feelings and words don’t always match up .Something can not make sense and feel right. Something can make perfect sense and feel completely wrong.

Apparently the Gold Standard in goal setting is and has been SMART goals, you’ve probably heard of them.






But, I’ve been thinking a lot of the best things I’ve done in my life have  been some or none of these.  So peoples goals don’t have to be S.M.A.R.T.  They don’t need to be specific, measurable, attainable, realistic or timely. They don’t even need to be recognizable as goals.

Jan  can think, there is a sense of yearning that I get when I look at that beautiful oil painting.

For someone else an adequate response to that feeling, that they’ve attached to those words, might be might be to decide they actually want more day to day beauty in their life, maybe a living room makeover is in order.

For someone else that feeling they have attached to those words may recall to them their favourite poet and an idea they have hidden somewhere in them, a great poem or thought that they have a deep desire to share with the world.

For someone else that feeling they’ve attached to those words, may be the call to embark on a hobby or career as an artist, start drinking lots of absinthe and chop some of their ear off.

For someone else that feeling they have attached to those words, might be due to the shed in the corner of the painting, that reminds them that they feel one with the world when they garden and how they’ve really been meaning to put in that shed at the bottom of the lawn, so they can really take their gardening to the next level.

Jan does not need a perfect formulation to begin, she is not Moses on a mountain waiting on the Lord for laws written in stone, she is Jan saying quietly to herself, “How about this? How about that? And how could I begin?”


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