When my daughters were growing up, on New Years Day we had a tradition. We sat at the round kitchen table and with the help of pen, paper and some artsy designs, to make it all attractive, we were writing down our goals for the coming year.
I don’t know if my daughters are still keeping this habit, but as the saying goes, “if one doesn’t know where she/he is going, HOW ARE YOU GOING TO GET THERE?
For that reason, even if I don’t keep all my goals, I still like to have a general direction for the new year. For instance, some of my goals for 2015 are:
To continue and expand this blog, to be more involved in specific ways with my church, that includes Bible Studies, to take care of my health, specifically to go to physical therapy.
Last year one of my goals was to apply make up on my face when I went out. Well… I did that for about two months. After that? A colored gloss was the replacement of make up.
I guess I need to try again and make applying make up one of the goals for 2015. A re-run!!!
The point being that we don’t always keep all our New Year’s goals, but at least we try. May be if we keep two of them, it is more than none. At least in the back of our minds we know what needed to be done.
A few rules to help accomplish goals:
1. They need to be realistic. Magical thinking will only lead to not accomplishing a goal. Yes, I know I will not fly to the Moon:(
2. Use the art of chunking (there is a whole post on chunking on this blog) What it means: Break a large goal in small steps. For instance, you want to write a book. Start with short stories. Start by blogging or just put your thoughts down privately if you are not ready to share. Just establishing a pattern of discipline is valuable.
3. Make no more than four goals. If you make ten goals, chances are soon after you will be overwhelmed and drop them all.
It is better to have less large goals and break them in steps to accomplish them.
When I was defecting from communist Romania, many years ago, in my train sleep compartment I traveled with an 80-year old woman who told me:
“Never make long term goals. Life will derail you! Don’t you see the Romanian communist party? They make 5-year plans for agricultural crops! Then we have a drought and down the drain goes their 5-year plan!”
Her advice haunted me for years and after careful thinking, I concluded that actually the meaning of it was don’t make plans dependent on nature or generally of others.
This takes me to rule number…
4. MAKE GOALS WHICH YOU PERSONALLY COULD ACCOMPLISH! For instance I could say my goal for 2015 is to be loved by my daughters. I cannot make another love or value me… I could ONLY value myself and love myself enough to have self-respect.
Have a Happy, Healthy 2015! Here is to manageable goals!
Thank you so much for reading my blog and following it. I will continue to share topics that help everyone in their daily lives!
Rodica Mihalis, M.S. Counseling and Clinical Psychology
What is Chunking?
Most definitions would tell you that it is a term used to indicate “breaking up” larger amounts of… whatever into smaller amounts.
Why? because, let’s say in the case of needing to remember a huge amount of information, by breaking it up in smaller parts, “chunks,” and also relating the chunks to other ideas, you will easier remember the whole large unit.
Chunking in learning huge amounts of information is a proven positive method. It is science and it is an art, all at once!
What else is “chuncking? it is used in psychology, in cooking, when we chop a large fruit into “chunks,” and the most common example of chunking is grouping telephone numbers, so we remember them easier.
WOW! Chunking is great, a God given help with those of us with less than perfect memories…to break up large amounts of information into chunks, so we remember!!!
Wait! What else could be “chunked,” so the human mind thinks the total amount is LESS than the TOTAL they will PAY???!
I had bids from two people to help me fix my home.
The first, said, $1,000! The second, said $10 an hour, as the work is completed, you pay be daily.
My reaction? I do not have $1,000, is he crazy? And I dismissed him.
The second person started to work and at the end of each day, I was usually paying him $50 to $60.
So reasonable! I felt lucky to have such an understanding handyman!
After a while, the project was done, and we parted friends, and I could not be more thankful…. until I did my math:) What it showed? YOU guessed! Although I paid $50 a day, there were so many days that the total price ended up being $1,350! more than the first bidder’s quote, which was NOT chunked, $1,000.
I have noticed the “trick of chunking” used in advertising, when, for instance, a life insurance policy is advertised as $1 a day per UNIT!!! How much money equals a unit? $1,000? $2,000? And then to find out how much you spend you actually will have to multiply the daily amount paid with 30 or 31 days of the month to get the monthly expense. If you want to be even more accurate and determine if chunking was an art, a trick or both, multiply the amount spend DAILY with 365 days (a year) and determine HOW much you really spend. Now, if at the end of the “deal,” YOU own the object you paid for by chunking, that is a good deal, but if you just have the use of it and have to give it back to the owner… oh well, he/she, chunked you:
Let’s take an example: you have the use of an object (any object) for which you pay the seller, $5 a day. That means your monthly cost is 5 x 30=$150 monthly; If we calculate further, and we know a year has 365 days, 365 x 5/daily=$1,825
Math was never my forte but many times the curves in life, the tricks of otherwise great techniques, need to be understood, so that those that apply good principles to “trick” the minds of trusting people rethink their “deceptive art.” Or is it an art?