I’m a small-town California girl turned mental health therapist. Favorite things: babies (but don’t have my own!), comfy pants, and taking too many pictures. I'm all about realistic self-care, mental health for everyone, and personal growth even if you hate that phrase (cause I do!).
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Whether it’s #relationshipgoals or #lifegoals, goals are always a hot topic. For good reason. Goals help us get alignment between our values and our actions. And that, I believe, is where the real magic happens. But what’s interesting to me is that we usually think of goals as things we want to have or do, or things we want to be. I believe when we do so, we set more meaningful goals that take our lives where we truly want to go.
I used to only think of goals in terms of what I wanted to do or accomplish. But, some of my most meaningful goals (that brought significant life changes) came about a different way. I realized I couldn’t only think of my priorities as things I wanted to attain or accomplish.
I thought about how I wanted my life to feel. I imagined how I wanted to feel in my life, day in and day out, year after year.
The question, how do I want to feel, helped me see how far away my reality was from my imagination, which is the crucial first step in any kind of growth. At that time in my life, I was coming to grips with a tough reality that I felt exhausted, overwhelmed, and like a failure. I realized I didn’t want to spend my days, months, and years feeling that way. Not if I could help it.
My answer: I wanted to feel calm, rested, able to manage and take care of my responsibilities. I wanted to feel connected to community and that I was my best-self at least most days. Peaceful, grounded, and connected. Not frazzled, lethargic, and not living up to my potential.
Once I knew how I wanted to feel, I was able to identify the things that were keeping me from that reality. Then I could take the steps to make changes. Some were external (quitting a job, moving, etc), and some were internal (changing my focus).
Thinking of my goals as how I wanted to feel helped me address my priorities both in the short-term and the long-term. I realized that accomplishing a long-term goal wasn’t worth it to me if it meant feeling awful in the meantime. For example, even becoming a millionnaire wasn’t worth it if it meant spending most days overwhelmed and anxious. Nothing, ultimately, was worth my health, sanity, and relative happiness.
This perspective shift helped me to attend to both my immediate future and my long-term future, and pursue things that benefit both.
Do you need to take a moment to pause and ask yourself––how do I want to feel most days? How do I currently feel? What would need to change to get there? Which of those things are in my power to change? Maybe you’re realizing you’re overwhelmed most of the time, too. A good place to start is with the self-care assessment I created.
We know self-care is important. But doing it is a different story. This assessment is a way to figure out where you’re at in your self-care practice so you can lean into caring for your whole self. Get the assessment now or learn more here.
by Kylie |
October 23, 2018
© Tend and Mend, Kylie Bennett 2019.
I'm Kylie. I’m a small-town California girl turned mental health therapist. Favorite things: babies (but don’t have my own!), comfy pants, and taking too many pictures. I'm all about realistic self-care, mental health for everyone, and personal growth even if you hate that phrase (cause I do!).