“You’re not too smart, don’t you agree?”
My Biology teacher asked me this question. Sitting in front of me. She thought that girls are less talented than boys. She was looking straight into my eyes, in her voice was pure confidence.
I was shocked. You know, it’s not like I find myself a genius. However, it’s unusual to get such a question. I was a good student and suddenly diz happened. What the hell are you supposed to do in this situation? I don’t even remember what my reply was. The only thing on my mind was “I’ll prove you wrong!”. That was my purpose for some years.
The purpose that turned out to be meaningless bullshit. Come, let’s talk about good targets.
An example of how not to do it
My target became to use my full potential and become a doctor. I started working even harder. Preparing for exams to get to med school was taking up most of my free time.
I don’t want to know how many times I had to refuse meeting my friends because of the additional classes I had near my hometown. I don’t want to know how many trees I killed because of printing exercises. Damn, I cried so many times. Almost all this preparations time I felt anxious.
Finally, I got accepted into the med school! I did it, yay! I proved what other person thinks of me wrong! Cool, right?
This euphory lasted for two weeks. Then I became miserable.
You can read the whole story HERE. It’s quite long.
The point is…
I screwed at the stage of setting a goal. The stage important as hell! I forgot to sit my butt down and think where will it bring me. Okay, I’ll show her I can get accepted to the med school. But what then? Did I become a better human by compelling this mission? Did it bring value to the lives of others? Why do I even care about some person who won’t be important to me?
I forgot to give some depth to my purpose so it doesn’t become an empty shell when I reach it. That’s how I ended up empty inside until I left med school.
The example of how to do it
There is a guy called Mark Manson. Not Marlin. He wrote an eye-opening book called The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck. There was an interesting idea of values (I think we can apply it to the life goals too). According to him, a good value should be:
2. Socially constructive
3. Direct and possible to control
I think these parameters are a good start when you have no idea what your life purposes should be.
You’re going to do some hard work now. Devote some time to sit your butt down and take a look into your mind.
Remember to be honest with yourself. This is the case between you and you – there is no one to judge, cringe or laugh. You don’t have to pretend anything. The truth may be uncomfortable and painful. However, after this treatment, you’re gonna feel better.
Think of your current targets. Or the targets you’re aiming for. Think, what value will it give to you in the end? Or through your journey to it? Are they real, socially constructive, direct and possible to control? What will you do with the accomplished goal? Will the material thing make you a better person? Is it even possible to be happy all the time or is it only an escape from the fact that the pain is the part of our lives? What about fame? How is it improving in itself?
Okay, last question. What are your thoughts on setting goals? Let me know in the comments!