Goal setting is always lauded as the holy grail of making things happen. But so often, my goals are short term. I’ve gotten into a pattern of writing out daily and weekly goals, though they normally turn out to be more of to-do lists with whatever homework is due the next day.
Five years difference
I am 20 1/2 now and as my graduation date (May 2019) crawls ever closer, I’m starting to turn my focus to the big picture decisions that will shape my future. I hesitate to say they will shape the rest of my life because that makes them scarier. I’m looking this as a variation on the stereotypical interview question: “where do you see yourself in five years?” I like framing it as a set of goals to achieve, instead of a destination, since it offers a roadmap in a time of uncertainty. So here is my big picture to-do list for the next five years:
- I want to travel to Spain/Germany/Austria/Czech Republic/Iceland: I have done a lot of traveling in Europe and these are the countries that I haven’t yet been to and am really looking forward to visiting.
- I want to return to Scotland/Greece: I’ve been to both these countries but I don’t think I really did them justice. I only spent a weekend in Edinburgh and I didn’t make it to the Greek islands.
- I want to visit New Orleans/ Hawaii: These are the two big American destinations that I haven’t been to yet.
- And the last travel one, I want to visit somewhere out of my comfort continents: I’m pretty comfortable in North America and Europe, as I have lived in both, so I would like to travel a little farther afield. Maybe Japan?
- I want to learn to like hiking. I always end up on giant hikes up mountains when traveling and even at home in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. I love being at the peak of a hike and looking out on whatever beauties the landscape has to offer but I dread the actual climb. I need to focus on some cardio at home so I can enjoy my cardio abroad.
- I want to master crow pose. I’ve been doing yoga for about a year but I haven’t moved on to the more difficult inversions; I don’t have the arm or ab strength.
- I want to read 100 books a year. I made it to 80 last year, but I’m already behind on my Goodreads goal for this year.
- Less Netflix, more books. This one might honestly turn out to be one of the hardest. I love Netflix and the shows just keep getting better.
- I want to add more variety to my reading. I want to read across all ages and genres.
- I want to publish a novel. I’ve dappled with writing long form fiction since seventh grade but I’ve never followed through. Maybe a better goal would be to write and revise a novel, but dream big.
- I want to continue and grow this blog.
- I want to have another internship. Or two more. This is a mini-goal as a stepping stone to achieve goal 15.
- I want to graduate with my Bachelor’s Degree in English.
- I want to move to New York.
- I want to figure out taxes, a 401(k) and a mortgage. Practical.
- I want to better my stock market skills. I’ve had a brokerage account for almost two years now, but I want to get more into options trading and invest some more money.
- I want to learn to code HTML and CSS and to better my computer literacy in general.
- I want to use more of my vocabulary when I speak. The need for this is evident in the fact that I’ve started every goal with ‘I want’.
- I want to figure out a skincare routine that works for me.
- I want to keep a plant alive for longer than I have before.
- I want to cook a three course meal all on my own.
- I want to learn, or rather re-learn, Baklava with Grannie. She has taught me once before, but I forgot the magic words.
- I want to start eating healthier on a regular basis. I’ve always been told that a childhood metabolism doesn’t last forever.
- I want to develop a minimalistic ‘adult’ wardrobe. Not that I don’t already dress like an adult. I want to start only buying things I will actually wear and higher quality items that can last me forever.
- I want to make connections. My dad always says that he tries to learn something from everyone he works with. I want to adhere to that philosophy as I learn how to be a professional.
Here’s to the next five years…
What are your goals for the next five years?
Sidenote: I found these while looking through my photos and since I’m doing before/after shots, I couldn’t resist this one, even though it’s only three years apart.
Talk about a glow-up…