Everyone talks about it: how beautiful the leaves are as they change, how excited they are that Pumpkin Spice is back, trips to pumpkin patches, Halloween festivities, Thanksgiving, and the long awaited chance to wear scarves and boots again. Fall tends to be a season that is appreciated by many. Although it may be cliche to talk about all of the great things that happen around the fall season, there is a reason it’s so adored.
For me, fall is a time to rejuvenate. Yes, I appreciate pulling out my coziest blankets, and getting excited for my Halloween costume, but more than anything it gets me excited to look into the coming season. With winter just around the corner I know that I will be spending many more days inside, calm and comfortable, versus the overly active and busy summer. Instead of running from soccer games and pool parties, I will be watching movies and wrapping gifts. The days of forcing myself to be outside simply because it would be a shame to waste a beautiful day will be traded in to avoid the chill outside at all cost. Being trapped inside can be depressing. Sometimes even unmotivating and life sucking, so I have chosen to use fall as an opportunity to prepare myself for the cold winter to come.
We’ve been talking a lot about change (purposeful and unexpected.) As time passes, changes will come whether we hope for them or not. So a little motto of mine is to always be creating my own changes, or at least working towards them. This is a time of year where I begin looking at where I am and what I’m doing and evaluate what other steps need to be taken. Goal planning starts happening. Short term. Long term. And even wild and crazy, totally unobtainable goals. I look at where I’m at and ask myself “If I could choose where I would want to be next year at this time, where would it be? What’s next?”
If you talk to anyone I am close to they will be very quick to agree that I am always dreaming. I am never one to be short of wild ideas and crazy business plans. I always have something exciting that I’m telling people I’m going to be doing. But what they will also tell you is that more times than not, I don’t end up doing those things. Although others would see this as a downfall, or choose to view me as someone who talks a big talk without much walk, I am personally very okay with this method. Many people work with the concept of setting achievable goals to get you where you want to go, and although I agree very much with this method I also have a method of my own.
If you are always working towards something great, then you will always be moving whether you achieve those specific dreams or not.
With things constantly changing I don’t allow myself to be dissappointed when my vision changes, or my goal transforms. I don’t set goals with the knowledge that if I don’t succeed then I will have failed. Here’s my thinking: If i look ahead a year, and speak out the most extreme vision of what I wish my life would look like and start making steps in that direction, then I am giving myself the opportunity to make way for even bigger and better things to happen. I open up doors into things that I maybe didn’t even know I had interest in.
If you only have small dreams or no dreams at all then you don’t take much action. Say your goal is to get a promotion in your company. Although it’s a great thing to work towards the actual steps that you might take to accomplish this would be fairly small. You take steps like putting in unexpected overtime, maybe sucking up to your boss a little. Now say instead of a small goal you aim for something more extreme. Maybe instead you decide that next year at this time you want to be working in New York City as the right hand man to a CEO of a major corporation, making the big bucks and living the dream. Your steps to get here will look much different (and you may have learned that you have interest in moving to the city. Did you recognize this before?) To get here you have to start making connections outside of your company, or using resources you already have to find someone in NYC. Maybe you take a couple of trips out and meet some big wigs at companies that are a little different than the one you work for. After building the connections and doing your research you learn that you have a much greater passion for that company than the one you’re in. You invest time in them and start building a foundation to get in with a new company. By next year you’ve landed a new job. You may not have the job title that you stated in your big dream, but you’ve suddenly landed yourself in the location you truly want to be in with a job that you are 100 times more passionate about. All because you dreamed big instead of small, and allowed your actions to open up alternative opportunities.
If you are always only looking one step ahead, then how many things are you missing out on? How many opportunities are you depriving yourself of just because you don’t really know they are an option. If you step out of your comfort zone and begin dreaming of something impossible, then you may work your way into something incredible. It may not always take you as far as you’d originally thought, but if you are constantly reevaluating those dreams, then you will never be stuck and will always be opening yourself up to greatness.
So fall is my season. My season to look at my life and say “What’s next?” It’s my season to dream big. I set aside all of my goals and dreams from last year and evaluate where I am now. I take time to appreciate where my crazy dreams from a year ago have brought me, and then weigh all of the new opportunities that have presented themselves because of it. That’s where I start building from. And it never ceases to excite me!
Who cares if your goal is constantly changing, as long as you’re moving towards something great?
What are you looking forward to for the coming year? What steps will you be taking through the winter to begin moving you in a direction you truly want to be going? I’d love to hear about all of your crazy, out of this world dreams in the comments below!