Tuesday, January 08, 2008

An Exercise in Thought.

I am a junk magnet. I'll throw that one into the mix and let it swirl about for a bit.

I am unsure if I have ever set goals. I was thinking this morning about my life and how I came to be where I am. When one makes a plan, one sets the objective and gathers the necessary resource to secure that objective. No problem.

In my life however, I don't seem to remember doing that.

I have said "Oh. I like that!" and "That looks an interesting job. I'd like to do that!", and funnily enough, on at least three occasions, I have ended up doing jobs I had previously desired.
But I never set goals. I must have been lucky. I have always (so far) been lucky in life, not love, but certainly life.

So, where does this ramble take us? A model scenario might help.

Student entering high school thinks "I want to be a Doctor of Medicine".
Student does research and determines the required qualifications & training.
Student maps out timeline for attaining such.
Student studies hard and gains required knowlege over many years.
Student graduates and gains employment as a Doctor of Medicine in joint practice or sets up own practice.
This will be our reference model.

Sans enters high school.
Sans doesn't remember anything about entering high school because he is a stupid bewildered little boy.
Sans has zero idea what 'work', 'employment', 'income', 'planning' and 'future' are.
Sans is good at running and knows 'goals' belong in soccer.
Sans remembers leaving high school 5 years later, his long hair blowing in the wind, thinking "Gee, it's great to know everything, can life get any better than this?"

Five years and I probably remember two minutes of it.

Now I come to remember, I did positively decide not to enter tertiary education at that time, but to seek employment. Maybe that counts as a goal, or possibly a goalette. Have I just destroyed my own argument? Maybe, but let's continue forward...

I had zero idea which field of employment I should enter. I had not studied with any idea of direction. Mostly I had not studied.

So two, this is how my life was set to continue. No plans, no goals, no set direction. Always starting from 'now' and leaving it to chance to decide my path. And here we are.

Would my life have been different if I had been more forward thinking? Would it have been better?

I have recently stopped carrying my canvas attaché bag. It simply got too heavy. This may be considered an analogy for my life to present.

Remember the junk magnet?

I have ambled along collecting 'stuff' and am over-burdened. Now is the time in my life I need to set goals, decide direction and execute. This will be painful as many 'precious' things will have to go. I simply cannot carry it all any more.

Things that I have worked hard to achieve will have to be sacrificed. I realise this now, but no matter, these are only things, and possibly the main thing is that I did achieve them. I know that.

The wave of life never stops pounding at our door. Always new, always younger, fresher, stronger. How different it never is, and always is.

Maybe life is balanced. Some people work hard climbing at the start of life and get to slide down to the end, while others like me, live an inverted life and slide down at the beginning, only to find we have to climb up at the end.

So three, I start this new chapter in my life with trepidation. At least before if I did not achieve, it could not be considered a failure because there was no goal to be achieved. Now there is a goal, and only time will tell if I achieve it. I'll let you know in thirty years what this post is all about and how it's went...


Anonymous CresceNet said...

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7:28 AM  
Blogger Chris said...

Cool post, Sans. I can relate to a lot of what you said.

Best of luck on reaching your newfound goal!

8:45 AM  
Blogger Cooper Green said...

You share some pretty interesting stuff with us, Sans, and it sounds like you're on to something that will be life altering. I hope you'll keep us posted. Best wishes for happiness.

12:18 PM  
Blogger SkylersDad said...

I hope it works out for you Sans, but I had the opposite happen. I used to be career driven, setting goals, moving up the ladder.

Then we had Skyler.

Things change your perspective as you go through life. If I could be so bold, I think you got it right the first time Sans!

Now when I have meetings with bosses, and they want to know what my career plans are, I always give them the same line.

My short term goal is to make it through the day. My long term goal is to string a bunch of short term goals together!

5:57 PM  
Blogger Mel said...

I pretty much have had to let any goals go and just live each day at a time. See, when you come close to death you realize that just waking up each morning is a gift...the rest is just gravy.

I was scared you were gonna give up blogging when you said you had to let some things go!!! Whew so glad you are not!

9:29 AM  
Blogger Special K said...

I, like Chris, relate to every word of this.
Everyone does it their own way.
As long as we keep learning, I think we'll be OK.

11:04 PM  
Blogger geosmythe said...

I always have enjoyed the idea of goals. But, recently, have come to more fully appreciate this quote I read somewhere:

Humans make plans, and God laughs!

6:07 AM  
Anonymous Alex said...

Well what did you decide on Sans...? Cause I'm still at a stand still. It is the one thing I can not acheive in my life and it depressees me. Men, easy. friends, social stuff? cake. work and goals... I'm so insecure.

11:13 AM  
Blogger mixednut said...

Very well said Sans. I can relate as well. Wishing you success in your endeavors!

2:07 PM  
Blogger identity crisis said...

Yes...indeed...this post is likable. A true cliffhanger. I will look forward to reading the conclusion 30 years from now.

3:53 PM  
Blogger Lynda said...

I think I am more like Sans than that medical student. Junk magnet, no goals...yep.

Looking forward to seeing what happens in the next thirty years!

5:48 PM  
Blogger DadGuy said...

I am so right there with you. I am just beginning to stop running my own little sideshow and wake up to what's going on around me, what life is really all about.

Do I have some regrets? Sure. But the more I think about it, the more I understand that the past is the past. There's always tomorrow, and as long as I've learned from the past and keep my feet moving at a more or less reasonable pace (and that's a reasonable pace for me, not set by others' standards)... well, I'll be just fine.

Best of luck making some of those hard decisions. Deep down you know what to do, it's a matter of doing it. =)

8:54 PM  
Blogger julia said...

If you're reaching a point now where you're ready to set goals as opposed to being open to whatever life has in store for you, I think you should treat those goals as you have everything else. Try out goal-setting and see how it works for you. You will probably discover that your ability to purge the junk as you set goals becomes easier and easier.

Everything in its own time, Sans. I myself am trying out list-making where I've never done it before. I have to say it already seems to be doing its job.

11:34 PM  
Blogger Sans Pantaloons said...

Crescenet, Double spam for me! Yay!

Chris, Thanks!

Coop, Thanks!

Skylers Dad, Thank you. Maximum respect to yourself and Kathy.

Mel, Sorry if I caused any consternation, it was not intended. I wish you continued health, happiness and gravy!

Special K, learning is key. I have an idiom I often use.

Geo, You are my heroine!

Alex, some further self insight allowed me to work out exactly how I made choices earlier in my life.
Although I did not set positive goals, ie, select 1 choice from 10, I did set negative goals in a positive sense, ie, exclude 5 from 10. It didn't set an exclusive destination, but it did allow me to set direction. The rest is down to chance. The contributions above tell us that we are all subject to chance and fate. The fact that we can make contributions tells us that, so far, we are winners.
An insecure person would not admit to being such...
Ne pensez-vous pas?

MixedNut, Thank you!

Identity Crisis, Here's hoping!

Lynda, I will set a goal right here and now; to continue to lead a warm and happy life with as litte hassle as possibe. Wanna join me?

DadGuy, well said! Doing it is pretty much the fulcrum that all action flows through!

Julia!, I hope you had a good break. Yes, time will tell. I am an ardent list maker. I even make lists of lists, and colour code them!

6:24 PM  
Blogger Dale said...

Good luck with the next phase, the others seem to have worked themselves out swimmingly.

12:27 AM  
Blogger Amy said...

I'm relating too... especially after my big break-up/move across the country...

scary and exciting! Good luck!

1:08 PM  
Blogger Sans Pantaloons said...

Dale, Thank you. Life is good.

Amy, Thank you. Good luck with your job hunting!

12:26 PM  
Blogger Sans Pantaloons said...

It is done.

6:37 PM  

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