Goals, Systems and Me

I’ve been thinking a lot about new year resolutions, goals and forming new habits in 2014 (it IS still January, after all!) and have been thinking about two seemingly conflicting resources:

– An article by James Clear about throwing out goals and just focusing on executing systems, and

– Dallas Travers’ actor’s business blueprint program which starts with a very specific acting goal and breaking down the steps until you get there.

Upon further inspection, I think these two resources are saying the same thing – break down a really big goal (like being a series regular on a TV show) into smaller, more manageable steps. (Typing this sentence reminds me that I already wrote a post about this.)


Last year’s vision board

So why do I feel uninspired to start? Perhaps it’s last year’s vision board with all of the goals that I wrote down and aspired to achieve but didn’t. Or DID achieve while somehow still feeling unsatisfied. Yup, I think that’s it. What went wrong? I think I picked sort of arbitrary goals instead of what really resonates with me. Then once I had those nebulous goals, I didn’t put much thought into the process that would lead to achieving them.

As James Clear points out in his article, it’s way better to

Commit to a process, not a goal. – Yeah….I sort of stopped thinking about how I was going to get to my goals beyond Step 1. I thought it was enough to have goals instead of being present and mindful where I was. 

– Release the need for immediate results. – Check! I am impatient and got frustrated when I didn’t feel like I was getting anywhere. 

– Build feedback loops. – Definitely did not do this. Perhaps if I had, I’d recognize when I’d made progress (and be inspired to continue) or realize if I felt like I was stalling and make an adjustment in my process. 

I’m in a big feedback session right now – maybe beginnings and ends are good for that sort of thing. And I think my goals/systems can be grouped into three general areas: acting goals, health, and the people in my life.

As far as what my acting goals actually are…I’m going to release the need for immediate results and maybe think of some smaller projects to work on first. Dallas’ business blueprint will have to wait until I know what big goal to work towards – TV? Film? My own work? Not sure yet. And that’s cool.

I do know that I want to make being physically fit and active a permanent part of my life. It’s been a little touch and go, as evidenced by a slight “Christmas belly” but I’m back on track with exercising and eating nourishing foods. This year, I’d also like to move away from valuing my appearance and discovering how strong and capable my body is. I’m getting a little tired of not liking the way that I look or wishing that my body were different in this way or that.

And the last, but definitely not least, area I’d like to focus on this year is my community: my family and friends. Traveling to Taiwan last year to see my extended family and spending quality time with my friends and family in America gave me the best memories of 2013. And I want that to be a life-long focus. I’m not sure what system would work best for that…maybe I’ll start a contact spreadsheet to keep track of when I last connected with specific people so I know when too much time has gone by without a proper chat. And have a list of people with whom I’ve lost contact but want to reconnect.

Lots of ideas. Lots of new systems. Lots of feedback and adjustments, too.

Thank goodness I released the need for any immediate results already!

On to new beginnings and adventures!

Oh, and Happy Chinese New Year!!! Welcome the Year of the Horse!!!