Just to be clear, I’ve been sick the past 10 days, the knock-down-drug-out kind where you begin to question your own mortality. Actually it wasn’t quite that bad, but a nasty virus which included a cough so bad it would induce vomiting. My only relief was to be vertical, so standing, sitting or kneeling. These positions do not inspire good sleep, but to find relief from a series of coughs that made you worry about strokes would cause me to roll out of bed and onto my knees in short order. After a week of only 2-3 hours of sleep per night, binge watching Netflix and reviewing life goals (sitting) at a computer induces a certain melancholy that is probably disturbing on several levels.
In reviewing some long term goals I ran across this journal entry from Sep 18, 2013. It was my response to the above question. “More than anything, what goal do you want to accomplish next?” The question is part of a larger 100 series of questions that I have found extremely helpful over the years, but I was particularly impressed with my long winded response almost 6 years ago.
Sep 18, 2013 7:45 AM: This is a great question, as I looked at my goals, I have to admit, they weren't very inspiring in that they were the typical Family, Father, Health, Finances etc. Of course those are just the titles, the goals themselves are more inspiring than that, but by far my most inspiring goal and the one that is obviously looked at, worked on, more than the others, is Living an Active Lifestyle.
I love this goal, and I am inspired by it. Working out, skiing, climbing, hiking, scuba diving and travel. This is the area that I feel most alive in, it is what gets me up early on a Friday morning to drive a hundred miles to spend 14 hours climbing to the summit of a mountain peak. Or not being able to fall asleep like a kid at Christmas because of the latest snow fall, so I can ski in deep powder. It is my goal of passion.
Now will my goal inspire others? I don't know, will it be earth changing? I doubt it. I guess I could discover something wandering around the mountain sides. I often have dreams of that, but that would be shear luck, because I'm not really looking for that, I would have to stumble across it. And truthfully, the paths I take are generally well worn or at least traveled before, I'm not exploring new areas where no one has gone before. At least I don't think so. I might take a different path to the summit, but generally no.
So my goals are not world changing, but they are my goals. I don't get inspired by being better at something than anyone else. I get inspired by being the best that I can be at something. Especially if I am getting better each time or each year I do something.
This often becomes a problem at work, where I am happy working with my clients, but I am not inspired to be the best salesman in the region. I don't want to jump up levels of production, I don't even look at my "awards" for production. They hold no meaning. I like to work with clients, even love working with some of them. My income is good, and retirement plans are on track. Do I want more in retirement? I guess I'd like more savings or income, but there is a price to pay for more of anything, I am not inspired enough by it to pay the price for more.
Question comes from ThinkTQ.com which specializes in continuous personal improvement.