Corporate goals? You’ve crushed them.
Sales goals, team achievement goals, customer satisfaction goals, you’re an expert on setting (and reaching) goals in your professional life.
If asked, you could specify the ways you’ve pivoted and adjusted the company’s actions to meet the goals that you’ve set. You may know the SMART goal setting process by memory and have used it to successfully implement changes within your organization.
When someone asks about your personal goals, however, do you feel like a deer in the headlights?
Many successful professionals and executives pour their time and energy into making their business a success.
Then they find that setting goals in their personal life feels more like “work” than relaxation. Others may find themselves at a loss to come up with a personal goal to set.
Why Setting Personal Goals Is Important
Instead of beating yourself up about your lack of personal goals, hobbies or interests, consider your motives behind not setting any.
Are you simply unsure of what personal tasks you could use to set goals? Do you feel that your work is so interesting that you don’t need to “escape” from it?
Personal goals can give you a creative outlet that actually fuels your energy back into your corporate life. A change of pace from your work-related tasks can invigorate you, refresh you and allow you time to relax.
Scientific evidence suggests that individuals who routinely step away from their work are happier, more fulfilled, and ultimately more successful at work. Instead of viewing personal goal-setting as another chore, use it as an opportunity to boost your whole life.
Successful corporate leaders are often accustomed to dealing with large-scale goals, targets and may involve hundreds or thousands of people. When it comes time to focus on personal goals, however, it may seem overwhelming on where to start.
Instead of trying to set goals for every aspect of your life, start with one simple area. Perhaps you enjoy cooking but rarely have the opportunity. Set a goal to cook dinner once a month – perhaps Saturday night, allowing yourself lots of prep time during the day.
As you begin to see small measures of success, you will see the benefits of adding goal setting to your personal life.
Prioritize Your Time
New York Times Best-Selling Author, Jon Acuff, explains that he had given up the task of cutting his own lawn because he realized that was time that could be better spent on other, more fulfilling activities.
Whether he spent that time on work matters or having family time, he rationalized, it was more cost effective to pay someone else to care for his lawn.
Movies, books and social media can paint an unrealistic picture of success. On those platforms, we often see images of the ultimate professional is always wildly successful in their work life, is highly engaged with their family, volunteers at several charities and is in top physical shape.
The reality, however, is that it is nearly impossible for one person to be the master of everything. Your life will go through seasons, giving you opportunity to focus on different interests.
And frankly, sometimes life is all work or all family depending on what is going on with each.
And that is OK. Work-life balance is a myth.