I’m rubbish at setting and achieving multiple goals within a year. So at the start of each year, I usually set one major goal for it. It’s usually a big one that scares or stretches me.
I measure a successful life on how well I do on 7 core areas. I believe they are all important to feel fulfilled. Of course, at different stages of my life some may take more priority over others.
So the 7 core areas for me are:
- Personal development (what skills and expertise have I learnt?)
- Relationships (how would those that I love rate me in terms of the effort I put into the relationship?)
- Work (am I meeting work KPIs?)
- Health (am I doing any form of exercise and am I eating healthy?)
- Finances (am I sticking to my monthly budgets and am I hitting my savings goals?)
- Spirituality (am I meeting my religious obligations on a daily basis?)
- Contribution (how much of my time, skills and finances am I giving back to the community/society?)
Because of my inability to focus on more than one goal, I usually end up focusing on one aspect across that particular year, neglecting pretty much every other area in the process.
This year though, I’ve never felt more content. The irony is that I’m fumbling in every aspect of my life right now. I’d rate my work, relationships, health, spirituality and personal development as average, nothing really spectacular. I’m NOT on course to meeting my financial goals this year and for my usual standards, I’m nowhere near my contribution goals.
However, I feel as a person, I’m actually more balanced as I’m feeding every aspect of my life as opposed to just one part of it. I’ve also accepted the fact that I’m never going to be excellent in every area and have stopped aiming for perfection in each of them.
In the past I would feel high levels of stress, anxiety and a massive sense of inadequacy if I’m not at my best in a particular area I was focusing on that year. If it’s health I have to run a half a marathon within a particular pace and time; if it’s relationships, I have to do a grand gesture of love so I feel like I’m doing my part as a husband or a friend; if it’s work, I have to know everything in my field and have the highest level of skill and expertise over everything within my remit, if it was spirituality I have to go over and beyond what is required to feel worthy, if it’s finances I have to make sure I’m maximizing my savings and cutting down every wasted expense while optimising every dollar.
Now, my pursuit is about balance. It’s been tough treading this path. I constantly feel like a failing husband, father, son, brother, friend, employee, boss etc. however, strangely, in my failings I‘ve actually found contentment. I know that I’m doing the best I can in every area of my life. Each area is being somehow fed, regardless of how badly I’m doing the feeding.
I only have 24 hours in a day and 7 days in a week and 12 months in a year. So I’m never going to master all areas of my life. But as long as I know I’m being the best I can in each area, maintaining balance consistently throughout my life then I think I’d be a truly content and fulfilled man.
#authenticlife #authenticliving #contentment #fulfilment