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Goals and Dreams

"Reach as High as You Can Day" has found its way today in the US onto the ever growing calendar of things we might celebrate or notice on an annual basis. Its origins not only lie in the probability that athletes competing in the high jump might set themselves particular goals today, its wider resonance is reminding us that setting goals and pushing to achieve great things that we might aspire to is important. Today is that day and this is your reminder.

This got me thinking about the goals that we might have set before the UK wide lockdown, and how these might be reshaped or abandoned right now. It is likely that many of us did not have global pandemic on our personal and business risk registers. Many of us may have been working on our career development plans and looking to build networks, grow our businesses, reach new customers or markets or generally take better care of ourselves and our lives.

Image of High Jumper

I have seen evidence of two mindsets just now, one that looks to keep the head down, and re-ignite the plan after lockdown has finished. The other seizes the opportunity to use the time differently, realign the goals for a period of physical isolation. There are no limits on the extent to which we might use the time to catch up with the work and personal development tasks that we might have pushed to the back of the mind. Sorting, clearing out and filing can be therapeutic, and in doing so, we might just rediscover the email that we meant to send or respond to that could set you off on a new adventure. Low priority "might do someday" lists suddenly become worthy of attention.

Isolation also brings for some of us, the realisation that we can take back the feeling of a lack of control only through our own actions. I had cause the other day to dip into "The Chimp Paradox" by Professor Steve Peters and was reminded of the clear difference between a dream and a goal and why the distinction is really important. "A dream is something that you want to happen but it is not fully under your control... goals are something that you can set and achieve because you have full control of them. Goals increase the chances of dreams happening."

It is important that we continue to check in on our dreams and on the goals needed to support them if they are to happen. Wherever you are working today, take time to reach high and set a goal or two.

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