Sunday, February 19, 2012

Unrealistic Goals Can Burst Your Bubble

Do you ever have that moment when you're on top of the world? You're invincible, and excitement radiates throughout your body like you're plugged into a super-powered Energizer battery? Life is brighter, easier, full of hope and promise?

That smashing good mood of yours has you planning your entire week. You're going to get that project finished. Clean out the garage. Go through all the cupboards and closets. Churn out one story after another. Blog daily with renewed enthusiasm. Invest time in the social network sites. Edit your current story with the hope of subbing it out within days. Oh, and query an agent. Good times!

You log your goals on a notepad and get started. Because you're all amped up on happy juice you're cruising through and marking each item off. You're singing like a rock star, getting your groove on. You know you're going to bust through tomorrow's agenda with the same mad passion.

And the next day...

Your oh-so-happy mood bubble burst. The creativity bug sprouted wings and took off to some Avatar-inspired world. You look at your lengthy to-do list and think WTF?

Life is funny that way. You can have a super productive day and be walking around with a cute little bunny bounce, and the next day you're struggling to put on a sock. What happened? It's easy to get caught up in a moment. It's easy to plan your day in advance, especially when you're pumped. It's even easier to set yourself up for failure because you expect too much. And a vicious cycle happens when you set unrealistic goals. You berate yourself, call yourself down, tap into negativity and give up. You think you can't finish what you start and you're a failure. Not good!

When you set goals, whatever they are, they should make sense. They should be doable. They should be positive. They should fit within your daily schedule. Otherwise you're doing yourself a disservice. You only have so many hours in a day and losing sleep to finish your overloaded list is equally damaging. At some point you'll crash or your family may consider an intervention. I used to have unhealthy work habits, and my hubby will call me out if I even think about repeating them.

Find the right balance. Make goals you can accomplish. Be forgiving when life happens. Believe it or not, there is always tomorrow.

~Ann Cory


Sarahbotbonkers said...

What a meaningful and inspiring post. I think I'm one of those people who set goals all the time but just fail to them. I don't know if my goals are too high or anything but I can definitely say that I usually make my to-do list when I'm feeling really happy or excited. Glad to read this post, it made me realized what could be the problem.

And oh, I'm your 30th follower! Keep blogging. :)

Ann Cory said...

Thank you so much Sarah :) I appreciate the follow! I can relate - I love to-do lists. My mind believes I can accomplish this crazy amount of things...but it rarely works out that way. Sometimes the best way to start out is by doing less and celebrating each of those things you accomplished, and build from there.

But I say this after years of trying to find the balance - and I still have days where that doesn't work.

We're all a work in progress though!

Have a great day and again, thank you for stopping by!

Jan Springer said...

Hi Ann!

I have the same problem. Yesterday I was full of cheer and whipping through the wip and today it's like I'm dragging my fingers...oh well. One day at a time, I guess. :-)

Great post!


Ann Cory said...

That's the spirit Miss Jan! And I'm over here cheering for you :) I love the days where words are effortless, and get so confused on the days when it's the opposite.

Thanks for stopping by!!


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the reminder, Ann! I'm seriously guilty of setting unrealistic expectations when I feel good, and with chronic illness, that bubble always gets burst pretty quickly :D