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Goal Kicker – Happy Valentines Day!
February 14, 2011
Happy Valentines Day! But what has that got to do with Goal Setting?
Now we all know that Saint Valentines Day is the annual commemoration held on February 14 celebrating love and affection between intimate partners. The day was established by Pope Gelasius I in 500 AD and is named after an early Christian martyr named Valentine. It was deleted from the Roman calendar of saints in 1969 by Pope Paul VI, but its religious observance is still permitted and is now a symbol of love and eternity throughout the western world.
Traditionally of course, it is a day on which lovers express their love for each other by gifts of flowers, confectionery, and greeting cards.
But why not set some goals with your loved one as well? It may not seem a particularly romantic thing to do (and probably not the best topic of discussion over the candle lit dinner that your partner has prepared for the occasion), but now is certainly a good time to think about your common goals with your partner.
And if you don’t have someone special to be your Valentine, don’t worry – you’re not alone – but perhaps now is a good time to reflect on what you would want from a relationship (if you want one) and how you might go about getting one.
Here are a few suggestions:
1. Setting practical goals with your partner
If you have a long-term partner, odds are you share a house, share a lifestyle, share finances and maybe even have some children. But do you have the same goals for your lifestyle, tangible assets and even your children?
Sitting down with your partner and discussing each other’s aspirations is important in maintaining a healthy relationship and being able to resolve any differences you may have. So take the time and for each of these ‘shared’ aspects of life, consider what you both want to achieve.
For your home – your home is your castle and the one place where you can be yourself with the people you love. Ask yourself and your partner the following questions: Are you happy in your current home? Would you prefer to own your own home (if you’re renting)? Do you want to upgrade/ downgrade? Do you want to renovate/ update? Do you like the suburb/ town where you live? Are there any financial constraints affecting your choice of home and how can you fix this?
For your finances – are you happy the way your family finances are being managed? If not, what are the problems and how can these be resolved? What is your level of debt and how are you going about redeeming this debt? What are your short term financial goals? What are your medium term financial goals? How are you preparing for retirement? What are you saving for?
For your lifestyle – are you happy doing the things you’re doing? If not, what do you want to change? Do you have enough personal time? Do you have a hobby or interest to call your own? Do you spend enough quality time with the family?
For your children – are you happy with how your children are being raised? What are your goals for their education? Do you spend enough quality time with them? Are you teaching them all those essential life skills that they don’t teach in school? Do they have a hobby or interest to call their own?
The above is just a short list of questions to get you and your partner thinking about what you – as a couple/ family – want to achieve out of life. The real point is to just sit down and have a discussion about each other’s hopes, dreams and concerns and use this as a way to move forward together.
2. Love and friendship goals with your partner
Right, now we’ve got the ‘easy’ goals out of the way (well, easy in the sense that tangible goals like finances and property can be easily visualized, measured and goals established and planned) – it’s time to think about the often overlooked, but just as important, relationship goals with your partner.
While you may not want to be as specific with these goals, it is still important to have some general goals for how you want your relationship to be.
Are you happy with your relationship? What do you like about it and what do you want to improve? Are you getting enough quality time together?
Same deal as above - the real point is to just sit down and have a discussion about your relationship and what you both want from it.
3. Finding love and friendship
And if you’re one of the many, many people around the world that doesn’t have anyone special to call your Valentine, then perhaps now is a time to reflect on what you want in the way of a special relationship.
Do you want a relationship at this stage? If you do, then here are some tips for you:
Know what you’re looking for - What are you looking for in a relationship? Are you looking for something serious or just a little fun? What qualities and attributes are you looking for in a partner? Have you got children from a previous relationship? Would you be prepared to have a relationship with someone with children?
Know what YOU can offer – what are your qualities and attributes? Try the SWOT analysis tool if it helps you identify your good bits and not-so-good-bits.
Start looking – accept invitations to social activities, go to community events and functions, join a club (but make sure it’s something that interests you) to find like minded people, use your contacts/ friends, try on-line dating/ speed dating – whatever it takes to get out there and expose your self (not literally!) to potential mates. You may be surprised where you end up meeting your partner.
Be yourself and have fun – you won’t attract the right partner or be able to maintain a long term relationship if you aren’t open and honest about who you are in the early stages. So don’t try to be someone you’re not and just be yourself and enjoy the process of meeting lots of new people – you may end up with some new good friends as well.
Don’t be in a hurry – finding the right partner can take time and it’s important that you wait until the right person comes along. Don’t feel that the clock is ticking and settle with the first person that comes along. For long lasting happiness for you and your partner, it’s better to take your time.
So until next edition, remember there’s someone out there who loves you – even if you don’t know them yet.
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