The other day I heard Dolly Parton’s song “Hard Candy Christmas.” The lyrics went like this.
Hey, maybe I’ll dye my hair
Maybe I’ll move somewhere
Maybe I’ll get a car
Maybe I’ll drive so far
They’ll all lose track
Me, I’ll bounce right back
Maybe I’ll sleep real late
Maybe I’ll lose some weight
Maybe I’ll clear my junk
Maybe I’ll just get drunk on apple wine
This is the season of New Years Resolutions and setting goals. Many go through a process similar to Dolly Parton in her song. But rest assured Dolly Parton has not lived a single minute of her life with a random and sketchy process to setting her goals.
What do you need to know to set goals for the new year? I believe we must know ourselves. We must set our own goals not the goals suggested by others or the goals we are supposed to set for ourselves. Goals, short term, medium term and long term are the steps to achieving our dreams. But they must be our dreams. We must know who we are.
When Chris Hatfield was a kid he watched the moon landing and decided he would be an astronaut. That is a fine goal. But Hatfield was Canadian and Canada had no space program. So how could he become an astronaut? He set about preparing for his future. He said in his autobiography that he believes it is important to “sweat the small stuff.” And that is just what he did . He started by making sure he did well in all the subjects in school that could be necessary for being accepted into an astronaut program. . And he did it. He became an astronaut! He knew who he was. He knew that for him the small stuff mattered and taking a ‘flying on the seat of his pants’ attitude would not work for him. It might work for someone else but he knew it would not work for him.
I always sweat the small stuff. Maybe that is why I am happy in the discipline of dressage. It is all about the small stuff. The details. I know myself well enough to know that and I take it into consideration when setting goals for myself. How much small stuff will there be? Will I be able to deal with it? I have to know myself to answer those questions.
So before setting goals or resolutions take the time to be really honest with yourself. Here is some of the wisdom of Charlie Mackesy.
Happy New Year everyone!