‘What do you want to be when you grow up?’ The answers to that question are myriad, ranging from engine driver, pilot, teacher, scientist, etc. When we were children, we tried to live our dreams. We had a goal (an astronomer, an air hostess, a policeman….) and we tried to reach our goal by acting that we were already there. We innocently believed that by acting it out, we would eventually be it. As we grow older, we realise that having just a dream and setting a goal are two different things. Dreams are always vague. Goals, however, are always clear. It is not only what you want to be or where you want to be, but is also about when you want to be there and how you want to be there. ‘Goals are dreams with deadlines.’ – Diana Scharf Hunt
Having a goal in life is of utmost importance. However, to reach a goal, we do not need to know all the answers in advance. Martin Luther King Jr., the American civil rights activist, said, “You don’t have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step.’ But, we must have a clear idea of the goal we want to reach. As Lawrence J Peter (best known for his formulation of the Peter Principle) said, ‘If you don’t know where you are going, you will probably end up somewhere else.’
Dreaming is always allowed. But we may never realise our dreams without a goal. To quote Norman Vincent Peal (author of ‘The Power of Positive Thinking’), ‘All successful people have a goal. No one can get anywhere unless he knows where he wants to go and what he wants to be or do.’
One’s goals are a reflection of one’s dreams. Our goals should make us happy, and the process of reaching them should be a great journey as well. Goals are what keep us going. On the other hand, there is no rulebook that says that we will not encounter problems during our journey towards our goals.
Let us always enjoy pursuing our goals and reaching out for our dreams.