09 Jan Meeting Our Goals One Country at a Time
At the end of every year, we take some time to work on our long-range plans. We get away from the office to review the year, including our successes and disappointments. We share goals for ourselves, our family, our business and as a couple. It helps us start the year with a shared vision and a renewed commitment to our goals.
Back in 2011, one of our goals was to take a two week vacation, something we’d never done in our 30 year relationship. That “two weeks” meant more to us than just another stamp in our passports. We’d be away from our businesses for two weeks. We’d need cooperation from our adult children and others. We might not even agree on a destination. But we did, and we went, and we had an incredible two weeks in Italy.
Since then, we’ve traveled to The Netherlands, Belgium, The Czech Republic, Austria, Hungary, France, and Spain. Travel has given us wonderful experiences, and an appreciation for reaching our goals together. Here are a few things we’ve learned, one country at a time.
A Goal is Like a Target. Did you ever try archery at summer camp as a kid? If so, you know that in archery, you set your sights and aim for a target. You know how well you’ve done when you walk down to the target and see how close your arrow is to the bulls-eye. The target gives you something to shoot for, and feedback on the accuracy of your shots.
A Goal is Like a Magnet. Whether it’s winning a major contract or taking the vacation of a lifetime, we all need something to look forward to. We painted a picture in our minds of our goal and how we’d feel when we reached it. Of course, it’s easy to visualize the Coliseum or the Eiffel Tower, but you can do this with any kind of objective. Compelling images inspire you and draw you toward your goal.
Setting Goals Improves Communication. In our planning discussions, we learned some new things about what we each value. For years, we assumed it was as simple as “Margaret likes cities; Ron likes beaches.” Goal setting allowed us to talk about our preferences in a way we hadn’t before.
Where will your goals take you?
Choose a small issue (like planning a vacation) and set some goals together. From this discussion, what did you learn about yourselves? How can you apply what you learned to the more significant issues that will come up for you as copreneurs?
Setting goals bring you closer as you visualize the future and work toward it together.