Thursday, January 05, 2012

Have you thought about "Goals"

A few minutes before writing this I lay my head on the table that I have mentioned to a dozen odd people to expect my next post after my year of slavery into nothingness. A dozen thoughts, a couple of dozen wishes, with a zillion work at hand.

I do have a story here and that is about "Goal". Ponder on this and tell me what does a "Goal" mean to you.

I have not spoken to many parents to get a feedback on what they think about "Goal", but I do know a handful of parents think children cannot understand goals. But I think otherwise, children do understand "Goals".

What I think are Goals
Goals are something which is not necessarily time bound that needs to get done in a particular period of time. You play a goal and you play it tactfully such that you are able to achieve what you want. I did say "able" and not "must". Goals are not the be-all and end-all that you take a situation to to the extreme and be so anal about proving to yourself or others that you have achieved it or did not and accept defeat. Goal is not victory. Goal is not your life. Goal is not going to live your life. You don't live your life for the goal. So in short don't be anal about goals. Don't be scared about goals.

Don't be scared of goals. Goals are important and add meaning to life. Most of us have set goals and feels hey we have not followed it or achieved it so why make it. I believe that we have all achieved our goals in the smalls ways we can unconsciously and although may be not completely. And once we unconsciously see the results we revised our goals yet again. With each passing time, measure your consistency, the pace you are following and the methods you use to to get there. And again I don't believe there is a "a place or a goal post in life" as philosophically thinking if we feel we have got there and done this and done that and achieved what we wanted in life then we have got "Keval Gyan".

In short goals leads us to the path of thinking, the path of questioning knowledge, the path towards learning, the path towards achieving and yet again learning and so on and so forth until.....???? I better stop here before I get reminded of the karma and philosophy :)

In short: Set Goals to travel into a path of knowledge and please lets not combine it with success as it is relative.

Life is full of goals and this I believe can start at a young age - as young as second graders; unlike many of us who start when we need to meet the quarterly results at our company!

Teach your children to achieve - set a path for them to travel. Why not! This gives them the confidence to think and dream - To dream is so important.

This topic once again comes to a point where parents question their children's capabilities on why they did not score good marks at exams even when they knew everything. A parent tells me -"My child lacks focus - he forgets, he needs to focus and focus, he has no choice and he has to learn it". Does focus happen by just telling your child "Focus, you dont focus at all and thats why you lost marks even when you knew"

I believe all children and including adults loose focus. We dream and day dream and continue to do. Times when we lax and say "hey, its going to be just kichadi tonight for dinner - I cant focus and I have no energy"

The same applies to children. We as adults can retrospect and remind ourselves to focus and get back into the track of our goals. But children, they are short of time as they are children who love to karate kick , jump, dance and sing. Their life is a sing along.

So to help your child traverse a path of wisdom as he gets into the real world, allow him to set his own targets based on previous performances and help him plan this path towards a goal. Allow him to follow at his own pace with gentle reminders every time. As a parent, avoid setting targets for him and avoid expecting that he meets his target every time he sets it. Your job as a parent is not to slother but to guide.

Remind and guide and be gentle and kind.

I understand it is easier said than done, but who said life was easy and who said parenting was easier? Well you can make it a little lighter if you step back, give you child his space to explore. His space and time to meet his targets. He is not a rocket scientist that travels at the speed of light :)

So hang in there parents, I am in the same boat as you, trekking a path of patience to help teach my children about goals and guide them. I try to step back as they traverse slow and also be calm when they reach a goal and give them a small note of appreciation that they are doing well. I think this process will help them face life with positiveness and ability to accept failures and down trends in a positive calm and stress free way. If we as parents stress on a tiny thing like marks then we are teaching them just that. So....I let you think now.