Where do you plan to be in five years?
What goals do plan to have accomplished in the next ten years?
How old do you plan to be when you join the workforce?
These are just a few of the questions that we have gotten so accustomed to answering. The moment we begin our journey of education, is the moment that we should be thinking of the future. In elementary school, usually your teachers and parents are telling you of how you will go to middle school then high school, and then hopefully, eventually, you will attend college. So starting way back then, we have started carving out our path for the world. At my age of 18 and like most of my peers, goal setting is practically second nature for me. There are the moments of getting overwhelmed, but we don’t even know how to operate without setting some type of goal.
Sometimes we all get so wrapped up in the notion of having a set path of what we plan to accomplish in our lives that we feel like a failure if we do not achieve one or if we are not sure of what our exact plan is. Goal setting has become such a big part of our lives that we even set goals for an everyday schedule. How many times have you caught yourself saying that today you have to go to the grocery store, or you have to study or things of that nature?
Now, I’m not saying there is something wrong with that or with goal setting. On the other hand though, we have to remind ourselves and others around us that it’s okay not to have an exact path or to change your goals. Thinking back to my junior year of high school, I was very focused on college already. I figured that by the time I get into college, I must know my major and what I want to do in graduate school. One of my fears was starting college as “undecided”. I even found other people (and I still do) that slightly cringe when they hear that word.
However, I have learned and am still in the process of learning that goal setting isn't the only thing in the world. We need to remember too that there is good in living in the moment and that life is an ever-changing journey. So if you ever find yourself feeling disappointed because you don’t think you have enough “set goals”, remember that there is nothing wrong with that. People change their minds all the time. Just relax and enjoy the moment of right now.
Sierra Terrell is a college freshman at Troy University in Troy, Alabama majoring in Psychology. Originally from Waldorf, Maryland, Sierra was a participant in the Distinguished Young Women program and was selected as the Distinguished Young Woman of Maryland for 2012. Learn more about Sierra here!