For Lack of Vision
The other night I walked into my kitchen and hadn’t turned on the lights yet. I ended up tripping on some toys my kids left on the floor and it reminded me of setting goals in my life. You might be asking what tripping on my way to the fridge has to do with goals (and I’m about to explain).
Walking through life without goals is like walking with the lights off. You may have an idea of where you’re going, but you can’t really see how to get there. When you set your focus on where you want to go, it is like the lights coming on. Setting goals helps you navigate around the obstacles standing in the way of you and your future.
When I was a kid, I loved to play football. Like most aspiring football stars, I had a dream to play in the NFL (we will call that a long-term goal). To reach that ultimate dream, I had to start by setting and filling some short-term goals. I made all my practices on time; I spent extra time in the gym so I could be in the best possible shape. I also set a goal to study hard so I could get into a good college to maximize my exposure to NFL scouts. By the time I graduated high school I had met or exceeded all of those goals and I ended up being accepted to the University of Kentucky with a scholarship to play football.
As my college years passed, I realized my dream of playing in the NFL might not be a goal I could realize. Circumstance and chance happen to us all, but whenever one dream fades another one is usually right behind it. I graduated from UK and went on to become a successful financial advisor, but behind all of that was a dream to help others. In 2005 I set a goal to make a not-for-profit company to help people find their best strategy to pay for college by 2006 that goal was fulfilled with the creation of Indy College Funding. But the buck didn’t stop there. To best serve people, I had to have the most knowledge, so I set out to become a Certified College Planning Specialist (CCPS) and achieved that in 2007. I became a CPA in 2011 and Lord willing I’ll complete my Master’s Degree in Accounting at the Kelly School of Business in 2012.
This is a long way of telling you the importance of setting goals. Every goal I achieve has another one tied to the tail end. In life I have found you never really arrive, you just keep moving ahead. This statement is true for college planning as well. Begin by setting some goals early. What does you student want to do for a career? What schools are best suited to the degree your student wants? How are you going to pay for it? Answering these questions will give you a good idea of what direction to go. Some students want a small liberal arts college, some want Harvard, and some are still up in the air, but if you begin today with tomorrow’s end in mind your chances of success will greatly increase.
Here are some quick pointers for setting goals in all areas of life:
· Take some time to find out what you want to accomplish
· Set a timeline for reaching that ultimate goal
· Set some smaller goals in the middle so you can see your progression
· Review your goals often (this helps keep you focused)
· Don’t get discouraged and stay flexible (Sometimes our desires change and so should our goals)
· Read about people who set/accomplished their goals (Inspiration)
Thanks for reading,
(Photo by jannoon028)
although not affiliated with Indy College Funding, Kurt Supe offers securities and advisory services through cfd Investments, Inc. and Creative Financial Designs, Inc, respectively. Member FINRA/SIPC