by John G. Johnson
People in the public eye who we think "have it all" surprise most of us when they self-destruct or abandon a coveted position or social role. What they've done compels most of us to naturally go in search of answers, starting with questions like, "Why? or How?" Or we make statements such as, "Look at all they had..." "...If I were them, I would never have done what they did!..." “They're stupid," etc. We make these kinds of judgments and form our opinions because we are using our filters, points, of views, and values to see their world as opposed to seeing the world the way they do. If you have a heart, and consider yourself a part of the human race, then you, too, are vulnerable to such reversal of desire. Not just movie characters or public figures. If you are a self-reflecting person abandoning something you once chased isn't bad. Because you can and do learn something about yourself that you can use to improve the quality of your life ("Live Long and Prosper"...[in mind body and spirit] as Mr. Spock would say, R.I.P. Leonard Nimoy)
Having goals do make for healthy living; they help to add meaning and purpose to our life... But can any goal do the aforementioned? Which one specifically? Sure we can chase anything and say we are adding substance to our life. But are you sure that what you are seeking to grasp will give you and your life satisfaction? If so, great. If you don't know... then that's something to look into. Goals exist to satisfy a "need"; a need that's been awakened, is excited and yearning to settle down. The clearer we are on what this need is, the better our chances are that we will choose the appropriate goal, with the added benefit that your resources will be utilized with precision. Take for example your standard action movie - Taken 1 - starring Liam Neeson. Antagonists have kidnapped the protagonist's daughter with the intent on selling her on the black market. The antagonists' actions have awakened a clearly defined need in the protagonist who then chooses the appropriate goal and will take the "necessary steps" to reach it so that his need - safety for his family - is satisfied.
Moving from the world of fiction into the real one, most of us know that billionaire Bill Gates left the company he founded to pursue philanthropic goals. What need could he be satisfying by taking this bold step? Each of us has needs that are personal. Being aware of them, as previously stated, will help us to choose the right goals that will satisfy them. If you are pursuing a goal the following questions will help you to become aware of your need. Also, pay attention to your experience and check to see if the pursuit of the goal will satisfy that particular need:
- What is this goal really about?
- What will reaching this goal do for me or give me?
- Why is this goal so important?
- Is the goal I'm' pursuing going to satisfy my need?
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