As you may already have noticed in the previous 361 posts, I'm a big fan of goals. Setting them, working for them, forgetting about them and then discovering that I'm actually still moving towards them... I like goals.
When it comes to healing, I don't find typical goals very attractive. If my doctors say that it should be my goal to avoid any more back surgery for example, or they say it's a goal to gradually reduce my use of cortisone or to gradually attain a better level of joint functioning with less inflammation, those aren't really goals that inspire me or help me forward. They all feel kind of negative.
But when my third back surgeon told me I could drive a motorcycle again once the surgery had healed, THAT gave me an inspiring goal. I decided to do everything I could to get in great shape, so I could at some point in the future do something I really enjoy doing - driving a motorcycle.
Now I use goals all the time. Not large and fuzzy "I want to have a great life" or "I want to be healthy" goals, but quite specific goals for where I want to be and what I want to have in my life in say 3, 5 or 10 years time. When making decisions I analyze my alternatives according to how they are helping me move towards my goals.
One of the bigger goals that has helped me a lot is "I have a life where my health doesn't stop me from doing what I want". This goal inspires me on many levels, and obviously I can reach it both by changing what I want (I no longer want to be able to lift very heavy things), organizing my life so that I adapt my activities to my health, or by becoming 100% well. Somehow these things seem interrelated...
This time of year seems especially good for setting goals, reviewing and evaluating the year that has passed and thinking about where we want to be and in what kind of situation we want to be next year.
The trick is to dare to set a goal without knowing exactly how you are going to be able to reach it.
Set the goal, and start doing little things that take you in the right direction, and the road will become clearer as you go along. Or as Mr. King said:
"Take the first step in faith. You don't have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step."
Martin Luther King, Jr.