Photo: Chris M. holds up his completed visual dream board.
I met with a university student yesterday as part of an alumni-student mentorship program. Some of the things the student is hoping to get out of our meetings is advice and recommendations that will help her prepare for life after university. It was our first meeting so the conversation jumped around a bit – we talked about life and school, discovered shared opinions on pipelines and Idle No More, agreed on the awesomeness of Salt Spring Island, and discussed the power behind the act of being intentional about making goals.
This same topic came up at last week’s CEED Centre Wednesday drop-in coffee session. The community members in attendance talked about goal-setting, list-making, understanding your own strengths and weaknesses, and being okay with saying no sometimes rather than over-committing yourself and feeling guilty when you don’t get everything done that you wanted to get done.
Intentionally thinking about and writing down goals is something I commit to regularly. I strongly believe that there’s a direct connection between this act and actually accomplishing our goals. I know for certain that I get more accomplished by doing this. I also know that doing this gives me a better perspective on the priorities in my life and helps inform my decisions before I take on new responsibilities.
Life’s a balancing act for sure, but there are things we can do that make it easier, smoother, and more enjoyable.
To take this to a realistic, hands-on level, the group of us here on the farm spent a January evening writing down our dreams and goals for the next few years. Candles were lit, wine was drunk, and our living room floor and coffee table were strewn with magazines, scissors and glue as we pieced together visual dream boards. This was an intentional act – something that we hope will install in each of us a firmer resolve to work towards our goals. It was a fun and inspiring exercise and I encourage everyone to do it.
Meanwhile, in addition to our macro-level goals, I’ve been intentional about a related personal new years resolution which is to make a daily to-do list and, I’ve gotta say, January was MIGHTY productive because of these lists. This stuff really works.
So, on that note, time to wrap this up and get on with the very farm-y items on my to-do list today: complete third cold frame, plant broad bean seeds in pots, clean out chicken coop, move poopy hay to area where I’m building an extension to a garden bed and need a compostable layer of material, and, before anything else, eat oatmeal currently waiting on stove and make coffee. Okay, okay – and watch highlights from last night’s episode of The Bachelor (because even farm girls can’t help themselves sometimes ;).