Thursday, January 13, 2011

The Really Big Picture...

My previous post was on Goal Setting Tips, which I thought would be good for people trying to set their New Year's Resolutions. I admit that I took a little heat for not posting my own resolutions (but that was not the point). The point was to give people the tools to come up with their own.

Rather than bore you with my own specific resolutions or goals, I thought it would be better to share with you my Life Mission Statement. This is a Guideline or set of Rules that I (do my best to) live by. You can pretty much bet that all of my other goals (Immediate, Mid-Range and Big Picture) fit nicely within the Rules. I like to think of it as the Really Big Picture.

Once you have come up with your own Life Mission Statement and set your Goals, the whole decision making process suddenly becomes VERY EASY. Since your Life Mission Statement is essentially a list of your underlying Values and your Goals are the things you want to accomplish in life-- all you have to do is answer this simple question: "Is what I am doing right now, consistent with my Goals and Values?"

If you have a tough decision to make, again all you have to do is ask the question: "Which choice will get me closer to achieving my Goals and fit within the Rules I have set for myself (my Life Mission Statement)?"

The tricky part (that I just barely touched on in the previous post) is to be sure that your Goals and your Values are congruent. For example, you can't set a Goal to make more money no matter what the cost, and then say in your Life Mission Statement that you will never steal, cheat, etc. That will make you crazy when you have to decide whether to rob that bank for a quick pay out or to apply for a job that will take a lot more time to come up with an equal amount of money.

If you decide that you want to create your own Life Mission Statement, it should incorporate all the aspects of your life, just as I mentioned in the previous post (physical, personal, spiritual, etc.).

Another thing that you should keep in mind is that these Rules are self-imposed. That is why I often refer to them as Guidelines. As things change in your life, it's OK to change your Life Mission Statement as well as your Goals. So it is very important to be aware of what you REALLY want. Sometimes people get wrapped up in what they say they want, and then when they get that thing, they are not happy because it's not what they really wanted.

For example, maybe you set a Goal for yourself to own a 42-foot Fishing Yacht. So you save, save, save, until you can afford it. When you finally purchase your dream yacht, you find that you are not any happier than you were before, because now you have to work more hours to be able to afford to store it at the yacht club. What you really wanted was to have more free time to spend out on the water fishing. For the amount of money you have spent on the yacht, storage, gear and yacht club fees, you could have taken a destination vacation, rented a boat (that comes complete with gear) and spent more time doing what you REALLY wanted to do.

So do a little Soul Searching!

I admit that my own personal Life Mission Statement has evolved over the years, but not a whole lot.

Spoiler Alert: If you want to write your own Life Mission Statement without being influenced by mine, you should stop reading now. Go write yours, then come back and read mine. You can write your Mission Statement in many different formats. Mine looks like this:

I live my life to be a positive influence on the lives and lifestyles of others. I lead by example to encourage, educate and motivate people.

I insist on the highest ethical standards and will never accept less than the best quality performance from myself and others.

I take pride in all that I do, and always stand up for what I believe.

I am the best friend, brother, uncle and son that I can possibly be.

I treat all living beings with fairness, kindness and compassion.

I approach each day energetically, with creativity, passion and humor.

Good Luck. Live Life Well!

Peace and Love,

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