You should have one goal in life that takes more than a lifetime to achieve. ~ Unknown
Goals are important. They help us accomplish the outcomes we want by giving us clarity, direction, purpose, something to move toward. Without goals we tend to wander adrift, moving but often in circles, getting bounced around instead of advancing forward. Goals are important on the personal level and on the professional level.
The nice thing about goals is you have them, whether you think you do or not. Even if you’re unclear on what you do want, pretty much everyone knows what they don’t want. Writing goals down in highly visualized detail complete with action steps, etc. can be truly helpful, but it’s all far from necessary. The goals you are most likely to achieve are the ones you give consistent, persistent thought and attention to. As Earl Nightingale noted: “You become what you think about most of the time.”
So that’s all good. Figure out what you want, keep your focus on it, and your chances of accomplishing it go way up. Simple enough. Then I came across the quote at the top and I’m stuck on this idea of having one goal that takes more than a lifetime to achieve. We could easily rephrase it as: If you can accomplish your biggest goal in your lifetime, you are thinking too small. Yikes! That creates a radical change in how we think about things.
It doesn’t mean choose something so big you don’t bother trying. It means choose something so big that you care about so deeply, you’ll get started rightnowtoday. So big you can’t let a day go by without trying to make some progress. So big you’ll start seeking out others to help and begin planning and organizing and seeking resources. And you’ll be amazed. Bill Gates (and others) have noted: “Most people overestimate what they can do in one year and underestimate what they can do in ten years.” If that’s true, imagine how much we underestimate what we can accomplish in 40 years.
Forget realistic. What do you care about? Go do that.