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A Fresh Approach to Goal Setting

By Chris Dorsey


I recently attended Sunday services at a well-known spiritual center in Atlanta. Given that it was so close to the new year, the focus of the practitioner’s message was on an all-too-familiar topic, goals. She opened with a few jokes about her own failed attempts at weight loss, learning a new hobby and of course, finding love, before focusing her attention on the actual process of selecting a goal. Not long after the jokes and stories ended, we were asked to think of one meaningful goal that we would like to achieve in the new year. I immediately thought of traveling to Europe, more specifically Italy. Work and family had consumed me over the last year, therefore a trip across the country and away from it all was a logical choice. Little did I know that my goal to travel to Europe and my reaction to the goal would soon intersect with the day’s message.


The practitioner soon quoted Canadian author and entrepreneur, Danielle LaPorte, stating “when choosing a goal, it is not the goal that is most important but rather the feelings attached to the goal.” Wow, I have to admit I was not expecting such a powerful statement to come out of this woman’s mouth. Immediately my thoughts reverted back to Italy. I was soon smiling from ear to ear while memories of a previous trip to Rome with college friends made some twenty years prior filled my heart with joy. My feelings on that cool, Sunday afternoon were exactly the kind Ms. LaPorte intended to illicit with her personal approach to goal setting. In this new year, I think we can all do ourselves some good with a fresh approach to goal setting. So before you run out and join a fitness gym, or update your resume to find a new job or even book a trip to Europe, stop for a moment and consider the impact the new goal has on your feelings as opposed to the actual achievement.

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