At some point, I’ve been stuck with one professional objective: how to connect nature, working with animals and women empowerment – at work.
As a coach when I cannot reach an objective I tell myself what I tell my clients: are you sure is the right objective for you? Are you sure this is what you really want? Do you feel it “here”, in your heart, in your stomach?
Sometimes you need to explore a bit more to know if this is what you really want.
In my case the answer was yes, I was sure, and still couldn’t come to anything concrete.
After giving this a lot of thought, I realized that at work I am good to see the big picture in any situation and that I don’t enjoy much taking care about the details. So it’s easy for me to define a global goal but I don’t enjoy immersing myself on the details of doing it.
I also realized that In the past I have acted quite spontaneously to reach my global core goals, without thinking too much about it and I’ve been almost always lucky. As I aged, being completely spontaneous (without thinking about the consequences) started not being that good so I’ve tried to put more thoughts on my decisions.
What all this means? That I’m good in setting goals and making decisions but not that much in the “how” and the operations in between.
In my global picture there were 3 incompatible things and analyzing how to make the 3 of them collide took me nowhere.
Searching for answers, a 30 minutes talk with my coach made me realize about the following:
I couldn’t start working on the plan of my objective because I was trying to achieve everything at the same time. The big goal, the complete picture. (As I’ve always done).
I was trying to achieve having nature, animals around and develop a business on personal development for women at the same time. Which is crazy! Considering my reality: I live, work and study in a big city.
What worked in the past didn’t work now because this time my goal was too ambitious and not realistic.
How did the coach helped me?
She made me draw a big circle with divisions, where I should include my 3 goals (nature, animals, women empowerment), and for each one I had to define their size according to their importance now. It looked like a pie with divisions, like the one below. Only in my draw, every size was different, and for me it was not that obvious until I saw it on paper. (When we draw we use our right side of the brain, the creative one, which means I was thinking from another angle other than the logical).
Then, I defined what each goal meant for me and after, I had to think and write the actions I could perform to achieve them individually.
Example of my internal dialogue for the first goal
First goal: be in NATURE.
What that means for me? Well, for me the ultimate dream would be to live in a house near the ocean, surrounded by trees and plants. In my vision I see an island, but I don’t know which island. And that’s all I have now.
Question to myself: what can I do at present to live or at least to spend more time in a place like that?
First answer: I could go on holidays, but I’ve done it and it’s not enough. So, what else? I could also do some work there in order to be able to stay a longer time and really enjoying nature, without totally quitting my life in the city. Like a one month stay. And then who knows…
What else? Well, I can even create my own project/job there. Many people have done it. So why not me?
And so on.
What could I do right now? I can start by defining the place where I could do this. And then defining the job I could perform there. Maybe I could organize a personal development retreat? Maybe I could retreat myself to write? I could get a job in a shop for one month. Or do a work away? Yes, or no, etc. and so on.
Then I start with the second objective.
And then with the third one.
The last step is do a planning. And to start acting to achieve each action – always individually. You will advance in one or two or maybe even the 3 objectives at the same time. But the actions are not necessarily related. Means I can take actions to do something on an island, other actions regarding women empowerment in the city and other actions regarding contact with animals. And maybe (and probably) at some point, I will start seeing the opportunities for the 3 to mix.
When you are stuck with an objective this is one of many tools you can use. What I mean by stuck is that you don’t find a way to achieve it, yet you want it badly.
Whether you have a single or multiple goal, you break it in small pieces. You give to each one the importance they have for you now. You prioritize.
You write actions for each goal. You start to do the actions in parallel but you don’t think on the ultimate goal, so you take out the pressure. The global picture sometimes is just too ambitious, too scary or too complicated.
Transforming all that thinking into concrete acting will empower you immediately and take you to your ultimate goal.
I hope this article was useful for you.
All the best on your quest!