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Goal Setting Aspiration

Read a really excellent post by Samantha this morning on a break from coding my latest work project (don’t judge, its still in progress and I don’t exactly have a lot of creative freedom). For the past year our goals and more or less mine specifically, were to survive the wedding without mental breakdown or felony. It was a single year-long consuming goal, and now that its over it does indeed seem like a perfect time to pause and decide where to go from here.

Goals and the process of setting them can be a slippery slope. While I doubt anyone would disagree that they are both essential and vital toward long term achievement and self-satisfaction, if not done practically or with a healthy dose of realism it can almost send you backward. There are multiple occasions when I feel I’ve failed myself at a goal I’ve set too high, or with an all too unrealistically set date of aspired completion. With Neil’s help, I’m getting better at setting goals that involve simply trying new things and expanding my horizons rather than trying to be better or as good as others. I’m quickly realizing that the saying “the grass is always greener in someone else’s yard” isĀ  completely true to the way my mind works. While some people might have a few strong areas of pursuit, there are many things I want to try or be proficient in, making perfection in any one area altogether impossible. I’ve learned to set myself up for success by altering my desired outcome to be realistic. I also try to couple my serious goals with some smaller extra-curricular goals. By having the variance, it lessens the intensity on my more professional goals and gives me some small accomplishments to feel good about while I’m still pursuing the larger more long-term ones. Bottom line, the overall goal needs to always be happiness, a good marriage and a home that is a home.

But enough with the seriousness, here are my post wedding thoughts toward my goals:

  • To learn to sew, knit, crochet, quilt and possibly weave.
  • Be a more ambitious web developer, unafraid to try new things or not code it right the first time.
  • Endeavor to be more intuitive and daring in the kitchen. Try out new recipes!
  • Read and write more, be more informed about newsworthy topics.
  • Keep the house cleaner and be more on top of things that need cleaning and not procrastinate till the weekend or till it’s atrocious.
  • More backcountry camping.
  • Build up my freelance and expand clients and project capability.
  • Continue gym membership and overcome shyness and fear of cliques and take a class.
  • Finish school (stupid GRE)
  • Be more forthcoming with ideas and not too shy to share them.
  • Play my guitar and actually learn to read music.
  • Build a more organized garden space and successfully grow two seasons of produce.
  • Figure out my God thing.

A list with some pretty lofty things, and some fun things tossed in. I asked Neil to include his, so maybe he’ll jump on here and do that. He always keeps his pretty simple.

Neil’s Goals:

  • Continue to be honest and loving
  • Continue to be moral and steadfast
  • Continue to be active and healthy
  • Continue my part-time school
  • Seek more responsibility and salary in my current position
  • Live happy today with awareness of tomorrow
  • Buy a new car
  • Expand my automotive racing hobby with realistic expectations


  • Samantha says:

    You were right when you said a lot of ours were similar. I liked what you said about keeping them realistic and not setting yourself up for failure. I think I am prone to that as well. I can definitely help you learn to weave (assuming my loom ever works again) if you want…and I am very serious about that. I just got a great little companion book on weaving which I’ll have to blog about. I was freaking out on J.D. with my excitement over the book. It’s really cool! I find that as Fall approaches I feel more like cleaning up the house and setting goals, instead of Spring…I think my clock is backwards!

  • JD at NetRender says:

    Thanks for sharing Jess. You have some nice insights into effective goal setting :-).

  • nkohler81 says:

    Updated with my goals

  • Samantha says:

    I like your goals Neil. It appears that you have already reached many of them and are trying to continue to keep those. A very good idea, one that I’ll have to think about and see what I can continue to do well.

  • kahluaabba says:

    I have the same problem that you struggle with in setting unrealistically high and usually unattainabble goals, most of the time based on what I think I should be for others maybe and not entirely for myself. I love the knitting goal. It’s a great pass time. I will go a month knitting everyday and then get tired and throw it aside for a month, then get back started. i really need to start back up because I just bought yarn to make a baby blanket for my cousin, and that needs done by November.

    Take care.