Daily Stoic: Clarify Your Intentions

“Let all your efforts be directed to something, let it keep that end in view. It’s not activity that disturbs people, but false conceptions of things that drive them mad.” Seneca, On Tranquility of Mind

Today’s passage is especially relevant this early in January, but is also important all year. If you have a New Years resolution, or discover something you’d like to accomplish during the year, you need to have an action plan. It sounds good to say, “I’m going to get in shape this year.” But, you need to plan on how you are going to do it. You don’t magically get stronger and build endurance by scrolling through social media. Set some specific goals, such as running a certain distance, or being able to do a certain amount of push-ups or burpees. Or set a goal for reading a certain amount of books. Personally, I have a writing goal to get my Journey of the Rhode Runner book written through my first 10 races. I also plan on writing these blog articles every day. It can be anything you want to do. But try to make it as specific as you can, and set milestones throughout the year. You will need to set time aside to ensure that you hit your milestones. This means that sacrifices will need to be made. Our to-do lists get longer as we get older, and it will be impossible to accomplish if some things don’t get cut out. As I mentioned in another article, life is short, and there are only so many hours in a day.

For me, this means less TV and also going to bed earlier. I plan on being able to run a 10k this year. I put this plan in action by using the Couch to 10k app. I can only run once or twice a week now that I am aware of my limitations with my ankle. But, I am still finding a way to work out every day. In order to work out, write, read, and work my full time job, I need to make sure I get up early in the morning. So far, I have been able to get some milestones accomplished.

But don’t put too much pressure on yourself. Having an endgame in mind doesn’t mean that you are guaranteed to reach it. As we have learned in 2020, things do happen. Even though success is not guaranteed, one thing is for sure – if you don’t set a goal or an end in mind or an action plan in place, you definitely won’t hit it.

What do you think? Do you have any goals set that you would like to accomplish? I’d love to hear from you!

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