Contentment is a lovely hum of happiness la la la that plays in the background as the days gently unfold… a soothing, pleasant way to live. But without a nagging discontent of some sort, how can we move forward to something more, something better, something even more fulfilling?

Being contented is no way to get ahead in this world — and I am ridiculously contented with my simple little life la la la

Time for a kick in the pants!

When life coach Thea Westra tagged me for a goal-setting meme, then, I knew it would be difficult. A meme does take a lot of time, too. But I’ve never gone wrong yet in following a suggestion that comes from Thea…

My Top Three “Gotta Get It” Life Goals

We are supposed to give 5 to 10 big shiny sparkling over-the-rainbow, pie-in-the-sky, marvellous, life-altering goals, according to Alex Shalman’s official rules for this meme.

As Thea put it,

Here are my top 5 to 10 goals that I gotta’ get so that I can truly say I have achieved my wildest dreams in life. These are best, most exclusive, and over-the-top goals that I can pick off my goals list.

But honestly, I think I’ve done quite brilliantly here, just to shake off the Curse of Contentment (inertia?) enough to define three major “gotta get” goals.

So here they are:

1. Financial security
would be high up on the list…

Please note that we’re not talking about the bank accounts of the rich and famous, here.

Sure, one is supposed to “dream big” but whatever the driving force for happiness in my life might be, I’ve been around the block know enough to know that the country-club lifestyle is not it for me. Been there, done that, moved to the real country.

Financial security, to me, means being able to order up a load of manure for the garden without consulting the bottom line in my cheque-book first. Or hiring some big brawny guys to come in and prune the apple trees for me, so I can spend that time and energy on something totally frivolous — like training my dogs to do parlour tricks.

It means, above all, being able to pick and choose what projects I take on. I’m heartily sick of writing scripts for documentaries that are someone else’s passion, as glamorous though film work may seem. I would dearly love to be able to say No thanks from time to time — even when no other paying job is lined up to replace it.

My clever plan for achieving that goal? Royalty payments… I want them to continue for years, more of them, and from more sources!

Which leads me to my second goal:

2. Finish this book
that’s been hanging over my head for almost 7 years…

For some reason, although I’m passionately interested in the project, the writing of it has been very hard. It may be partly because I made the mistake of letting people know I was working on it, so now it seems like many eyes are watching the progress (or lack of progress), and partly because my last book, last spring, did not do as well as the publisher and I had hoped it would, so there’s a psychological hurdle to get over. The ever-popular fear of failure. Public failure, to boot!

Around here, we call this state of petrification a case of “deer in the headlights” — a deer on the road will stand still, staring into the lights of on-coming traffic, rather than make a leap for safety. Do I want to be the literary equivalent of roadkill?

Especially when the end is so very near…

I will finish writing this dratted book, and I will be ready to proofread the manuscript by this time next week!

3. Self-confidence
is an intangible life goal, but vital —
and clearly related to my struggle with the aforementioned “dratted book”!

I don’t know what happened… no big crisis or trauma… but somewhere along the line it seems that the habit of negative self-talk took root. (I think it feeds off a streak of perfectionism that’s grown stronger through the rough-and-tumble of the years, combined with that freakish Canadian-female need to please everyone on the entire planet.) So I need to re-learn that it’s okay to stumble, as long as themovement is still forward in a spirit of discovery.

I was bold and fearless, once — could’ve been a pirate, truly! — nothing daunted!

I will be so again.

Right now, I’m fearlessly tagging just a whole whack of interesting bloggers for this meme (you can check the rules here) —

(Forgive me, gang, but this exercise was so enlightening and productive, I feel the urge to “pass it forward” with a lavish hand!)

This Post Has 24 Comments

  1. Mihaela Lica

    Goals are personal and cannot be compared or valued as better or less by other people. You know what I am talking about? I think the moment you publish a book you give something from your heart to the world and that is unselfish. You are beautiful, Jen!

  2. domestika

    True, we can’t know the future. But it always helps to know where you want to go when you’re setting out on a journey, don’t you think?

  3. truderung_linda

    I will try my best to fulfill meme’s ideals. I do not fully know what my true goals in life are. I have the belief that You can not know what tommorrow will bring, but I will list things that I hope to achieve.
    Edit Site SettingsView Site StatsWords Of A Self Proclaimed Wisewoman
    Ramblings of a woman

  4. domestika

    Linda, where’d you go?!!

  5. RobinAnn

    Thanks Jen! You’re a sweetheart :)

  6. domestika

    Funny guy, Paul! Is that Payton’s first visit from the tooth fairy? We’ll make allowances for the effects of the daddy warm fuzzies… ;-)

  7. blogpaul

    there is entirely to many comments for this post…this HAS to be stopped!

  8. domestika

    Just to let you all know, kellypea has weighed in with a really great post, Setting Goals: Tag, You’re It. Don’t want to miss her serio-comic thought-provoking list of life-altering goals!

  9. domestika

    Jenny, Green Mommy, you’ve done us proud on this one! Thanks so much for playing along.

    It is extremely interesting, isn’t it, how so many of the goals seem to be tied to (or build on) one another? I love the way you describe the home you want to create – oh, and look, you and I share that fear of leaping forward!

    I was just talking to my mother on the phone about that very thing — and she, so wise, said that it’s dep-seated human nature to resist change, even change for the good. Like jumping from a second storey window when the house is on fire – very few people will be willing to do it, even to save their lives, until the flames are actually licking at their heels…

    If you read your post over, I think you’ll see that you already know in your heart what you need to do, to start to make your dreams happen?

    By the way, you’ve made me really curious to hear the story behind that ukelele (goal #7), now!

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