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.


Samruddhi said...

Liked your post..:)) best wishes for your upcoming posts..:))

jandy said...

Interesting point. And in continuation of the discusssion we had. What would you suggest as examples of goals to let kids set? I am not doing this right now, honestly. But am open to understanding it.

Archana Doshi said...

Setting goals is relative to each child and parent. Requires understanding of yourself and your needs and your child. Having said that. Sid is practicing piano now "Asked him what time he wants to take to complete a few versus on "For elise" ". So that got him thinking, he gave a time and I did not comment on it. All I will do his remind him about it. Short term developing and consistent. Kids are forgetful and space out quickly especially mine and hence knowing that I like to step back and not comment on the space out/lack of focus part, but remind him of the goals he set for himself. Get it? Or did I confuse you?

Bindu said...

Good thought to have meaningful. achieveable goals set for kids...right now one of the goals with elder one is to get some dining table etiquettes, if you please!
Btw Archana, looks like all your rumblings in 2010 post inspired you to do a turnaround in your life! Way to go - celebrity chef - sounds much better than a wall-street workhorse!

Archana Doshi said...

ha ha.. I still dream of me being in Wall Street, probably now teaching the corporates to eat better LOl :). Jokes apart. Would love to hear you penn down here if you please, how you plan to execute it or how you are executing already and later how it worked. We will all learn from it.

Priya Rajan said...

Interestingly.... at a growing age, their goals change and it depends between a boy and a girl too ..... like with Sandeep... he started of wanting to be a driver, then it went into a pilot, it was then a space scientist.... later on it was an author of children books.... now it is a scientist.... will wait to see what it ends up. MY daughter had a goal and she is working towards it .... very hard.... and I hope she stick on to it... the idea is, we as parents encourage it and give them their space to work around it....Emotional support is what makes them grow....

Archana Doshi said...

Thanks Priya for sharing your experiences. Apart from goals of what we want to be (not that they are not important) I am throwing light on - at an age where kids are growing, and you want them to think independently and work towards getting responsible adults that will eventually lead to a path to success in what ever they do. If we can train them early on to allow them to think for themselves where they stand and what they can do to get better or carry on... its a vast topic :)

Blogs Daddy said...

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Gagan Masoun