Ask any seasoned person you know and they will tell you they regret the things they didn't do in life, not the ones they did. They regret the risks they didn't take, the places they didn't see, the people with whom they lost touch. We so often get lost in survival mode and what needs to be done today, right now, that time passes and we are still not where we want to be in our lives.
When you are creating a goal-be it a life goal, career wish, or buying a new home, begin with the end in mind. The best question I've found to clarify where your life should be is for you to ask, "What would I do with my life right now if money were not a worry?" Put that picture in your mind-that is the vision you are working towards. Then, go backwards and figure out each of the steps you need to take to get there, as best you can with the information you have. For example, if you were looking to buy a home you would picture how that would add to your family's quality of life, then you would consult with a mortgage planner and a Realtor. If you wanted to start a new career, you would picture how that would change your life and then research how to get trained in the new field. Then, you must have complete faith in the process. Why? Because along the way, you are going to have to do things that aren't necessarily pleasant in order to achieve your ultimate vision.
Why do people make cookies? Does flour taste good? Do they enjoy the flavor of raw eggs? No. But they know when they eventually pull them out of the oven they'll be warm and sweet. And halfway through the process they can lick the batter and enjoy more of the journey. Your goals are the cookies. You might have to do some work to enjoy them, and you might have to read a recipe or talk to a good cookie baker to have them come out right, but they'll be worth it in the end. You just have to go through every step to have them come out right.
Over the next few weeks, I encourage you ask yourself what you would do with your life right now if money were not a worry. Take a baby step towards accomplishing it. Don't question how it will be possible-often either the answer comes or what was important to us yesterday is not as important to us tomorrow and a path opens to what we truly want. The years slip by so fast. Another one has just left. Let this be the year you start to live on purpose.