Goals For Happiness and Fulfillment by HOWARD DIAMOND
Submitted on December 10, 2022
A goal or goals come in many different incarnations. In some places, it is used as a
sports term. Whether it be when a soccer player puts the ball in the mesh or a hockey
participant shoots the puck in the net, it is considered a goal. Interesting enough, both
competitions have a goalkeeper/goaltender/goalie, protecting opponents from scoring
goal(s). On the other hand, when they make these saves, they are in a goal crease
and their goals against goes down. Andres Cantor, an Argentine-American, and
sportscaster providing Spanish and English narrations of soccer matches and known
for shouting an elongated period, “Goal” when one is scored.
Enough about sports and let us tweak the meaning of goal. Here the definition it is
the object of a person’s ambition or effort, an aim or desired result. Also, it is the end
toward which an effort is directed. Individuals have different ways to make, keep and
maintain successful goals while each person has their own spin on goal uniqueness.
In Mental Health, goals are more specific efforts to ensure that we can make positive
changes for ourselves forever.
Possessing goals is important because it gives us a sense of purpose and a direction
that is positive and that we can strive for. Attaining a goal by creating and completing
this ourselves goes a long way in improve our well-being as we come closer and closer
to self-fulfillment. Maybe this can allow us to flourish in our relationships, school, career,
work and hobbies. Here are some ideas for good mental health goals:
To practice self-love and self-compassion
Take care of and be kind to our bodies
Make time for mindfulness
Find new ways to handle stress, anxiety and depression
Seek support from family, friends and if necessary, therapy
Bolster one’s support network
Set boundaries and establish when to say “yes” and when to say “no”
Pay attention to and respect our feelings
A major problem in setting goals is that many see them as New Year’s Resolutions
with “hopes and wishes”. Definitely there is something inherently flawed by thinking
that these terms can achieve success. Hoping and wishing may be good for a song
title, but there is no plan, no purpose, and no time frame set for accomplishing the
goals we set for ourselves. Once we come face-to-face with the realities of daily life,
everything fizzles so hopes and wishes are lost. Therefore, a concrete plan needs
to be put in place.
One such concept was originally conceived by George T. Doran in his 1981 paper.
Since then his formula has been used and adapted in many forms. SMART is an
acronym for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-Based. This
idea has been used by both corporations and individuals for goal-setting. Hey, hey,
it has helped me for many years. On the whole, it works quite well.
SPECIFIC is direct, detailed and meaningful.
MEASURABLE is quantifiable to track progress.
ATTAINABLE is realistic and we have the tools and resources for it.
RELEVANT is alignable with our mission and values.
TIME- BASED is able to have a deadline.
When we start to feel stressed to the extreme and getting overwhelmed, it might be a
good idea to refocus our goals to minimizing, reducing and managing stress. If the
stress is not too bad, and we are finding some happiness and fulfillment, maybe try
and set some stress management goals. This is done by rebranding our current ones
which include our overall well-being. It doesn’t make any difference which goals we are
doing, provide some level of outlets for stress relief. Become and remain aware which
goals will lead to the fulfillment and happiness we all deserve. All types of goals can be
somewhat challenging. These goals are often more rewarding and ultimately lead to
better life experiences.
Maintaining goals can be more involved, but these are the basics four:
SETTING THE RIGHT GOAL
TAKING SMALL, CONCRETE STEPS
REWARDING OURSELVES ALONG THE WAY
CONSIDER SLIP-UPS TO BE PART OF THE PROCESS
Reach all our goals in a realistic way. It might take longer than expected. This can be
the difference between staying with our goals and reaching our goals. Pace ourselves
through the entire process in each part of goal setting, so we don’t burn out. Try not to
give up early and or abandoning our goals altogether. Finishing a goal is a great
feeling, so run with it and give ourselves a big pat on the back. Give oneselves
another reward and attempt to relax and enjoy.
Self esteem and self worth are higher. Okay, I hear out there that everyone does
not agree. Well accept this best one can when nothing, I will give all a big pat on
the back and maybe a big hug. Does everyone out there have an increased or
elevated feeling of happiness and fulfillment? I know I do! Good!
See you in the Newsletters and NewsBlogs.
HOWARD DIAMOND is a Certified Peer Specialist from Long Island