While cleaning out some drawers over the weekend I came across a book that I’ve had for a while called 5: Where will you be five years from today? I originally purchased this book for my best friend when she turned 25 last year. I felt like 25 is a pivotal age that should be taken advantage of and wanted her to make some active strides in making sure she did just that. As soon as I brought the book home I began flipping through it, only to quickly discover I wanted a copy for myself. The book is a quick-read and an inspiring guide on how to take advantage of the next five years of your life.
As I turned the first couple of pages and reread my responses to many of the questions the book proposes it was very apparent that I had already ventured onto many of the things that I said I would do just one year ago when I bought this book. Beyond it being a refreshing reminder of what’s always been important to me, I also felt a sense of pride in all that I’d taken care of thus far in order to fulfill what I said I wanted. In all honesty – it’s pretty crazy to actually grasp the fact that we have the power to design the exact life we want to live. To make a long story short, here are the three steps I took from this book that gave me a good push in the right direction –
Write your Goals Down and be Specific!
According to Dave Kohl, professor emeritus at Virginia Tech., people who regularly write down their goals earn nine times as much over their lifetimes as the people who don’t, and yet 80% of Americans say they don’t have goals. 16% do have goals, but don’t write them down. Less than four percent write down their goals, and fewer than one percent review them on a regular basis. Guess which one percent?
When you go to a restaurant, you don’t just say “can I have some food”, you tell them exactly what you want, how you’d like it and what order you’d like it to come in. Be this specific with your goals; adjust them to your taste. Make them as vivid and detailed as you possibly can. The clearer you can visualize a goal, the easier it becomes to acquire it. Print pictures of what you want things to look like, places you want to go, and imagine what you’ll say when you get there. Then list the steps you’ll need to attain it.
Determine your Mission and Values
I get a LOT of questions on where my brainstorming started when I decided to create The B Werd and it boiled down to values and a mission. I suggest that you too start with these. Values are personal choices you make about what’s important to you; family, faith, adventure, love, acts of service, animal endangerment, health, etc. Whatever things bring immense meaning to your life are likely your highest values. Your mission is what you feel like you’re here for, your calling or life’s aim. My values are self-love, quality friendships, feeling as good as you look, and fearlessness. My mission is to encourage women (and men) to live life on their terms while doing what truly makes them happy. Pinpointing those easily gave me a round-about of what this site would be centered upon. Narrowing these down will help clear your path.
Make the Time to Start Somewhere
Joseph Heller composed his best-selling book “Catch-22” by writing little chunks in one or two hours everyday before work. Imagine what you could accomplish by applying the same principles to one or more of your biggest goals over the next five years. Remember, the sum total of a lot of little efforts isn’t little.
We’re constantly waiting on the perfect time to get going when realistically, there will never be a perfect time. While you’re busy trying to get it right, someone else is busy getting it done. I wanted to have everything organized before I ever shared the site. I wanted a content calendar that I had planned at least six months out. I wanted a photo shoot for my “about me” page. But after a year of sitting on this, I pressed “publish” on a post that I had wrote that particular morning – not even any of the content that I told myself I needed to have. To be quite frank, I’ve been winging it since and so far it’s worked out pretty damn well. Start somewhere and make the time daily to remain consistent.