Here is an example. I wrote this letter to your grandparents when I was 19:
January 1, 1989
Dear Mom and Dad,
By the end of this decade the 1990’s I will be rich and financially independent.
Please let this letter serve as an “I told you so” when I get there.
I will no longer need any financial support from you, instead you will be asking me to loan you money.
Your soon to be rich son,
Son, there are a few lessons here.
1. Don’t put time limits on your personal goals. All this did was lead to anxiety and a mid-life crisis at age 27 when I realized I was nowhere close to being there.
2. Make your goals achievable. Was my goal of being rich achievable? Sure it was had I been in a better state of mind in my twenties, and had God been able to trust me with all that money.
3. Set small short-term goals . Break down your steps in easy to achieve more frequent goals. Daily goals work best for me now.
4. Don’t be too hard on yourself if you don’t hit all your goals. Don’t go into hiding and avoid your family like I did. I felt stupid and embarrassed because I was so sure I would be rich in 10 years.
5. Don’t brag, and don’t share your goals if you want to avoid falling into the trap of #4 above.
I set all kinds of unrealistic goals I never ended up reaching. Losing a certain amount of weight by summer, and being famous and an award winning writer by 25 were just a few of them. Instead I should have just set goals to walk everyday and try to eat better. I could have just set a goal to write 500 words and let the rest take care of itself. Before you know it you will hit your goals without the stress of watching the calendar fly by. And, as I spoke about in a previous post, make sure you re-visit your goals to see if they are still what you really want.
I love you son,