Let's have a little bit of a story time...
As you may know, I found my love for creating through paper crafting. So, in high school I had decided that my dream job was to work at Stampin' Up!, my favorite crafting company, as an artist or designer. I'm sure this idea really did seem like a dream to some people, but for me it was a totally achievable goal. I did everything in my power to make it happen. I went to college for graphic design, improved my creative skills, and made connections within the company.
Then, a few months after I graduated it happened! I applied for a couple of positions at Stampin' Up!, flew to Utah for interviews, and was offered both positions. Crazy! I know! I couldn't believe it! Not only was I going to work at Stampin' Up!, but I had my pick of positions! I didn't even have to think about the decision to move from my small town in Michigan to Salt Lake City. I just knew if I had the opportunity to work at Stampin' Up! I would go. So, I went!
It wasn't long after I started working at Stampin' Up! that I began getting the question "Now what are you going to do?" Honestly, I had no idea what was next for me. I just knew that this was something I had worked a long time for. I was incredibly grateful that my hard work paid off, and I was going to take the time to enjoy it. And I did just that. After, awhile though I did begin to struggle with not knowing what's next. That's when I realized how important it was for me to have goals. I had achieved all of my major career goals (graduate high school with honors, go to college, get dream job), and it became incredibly weird not having something to drive me.
I still haven't figured out any major career goals, but that's alright. Instead, I've started setting smaller creative goals, like learning hand lettering, and this has made a huge difference for me. Working on these smaller goals excites me to learn new skills and create on personal projects outside of work. I have no idea where these goals will take me in the long run, but I'm having so much fun (yes, fun!) learning and growing as a creative.
So, why do are goals are so important? Because they give you a reason to learn, work hard, and grow as a person. They give you the motivation to get out of bed in the morning and make an impact on the world. Without goals you would just be stationary, and nobody would ever see what amazing things you are capable of.
However, goals alone aren't enough. Gratitude is just as important. Be grateful for the things you are learning while on a path to reaching a goal. Enjoy the process. Also, allow yourself to be grateful for achieving a goal. Take the time to enjoy the success. It's like the feeling of crossing something off of your weekend to-do list, except a thousand times better.
Without gratitude there is a tendency to be upset that you haven't reached a goal yet. Even when you reach a goal, you are so fast to move on to the next that you miss the benefits of your hard work. I could have easily gone into a panic state after getting my job over not having a new goal. Instead, I made the decision to enjoy reaching that goal and that has been incredibly important to my happiness. The combination of goals and gratitude is something that I have found to be so important to happiness. I'm more than pleased with where I'm currently at while still being excited for what's next. ♥