Outrageous Goals

I don’t do it regularly. But every once in a while I make myself some (outrageous?) goals. I put a date on them. Put them out to the world. Take baby steps towards them. And then the world opens up, embraces my idea, gives me an avenue I’d never imagined, and hands me my wish come true usually much sooner than I thought possible.

As hokey as this may sound to some of you, I wouldn’t be writing these words if the above situation hadn’t been repeated multiple times in my life.

The first time I recall setting such a goal was back in 2010. My sister Meg and I had just finished painting a whiteboard onto my wall. And in no time, I’d written my goal: to spend one year without a permanent home doing things I’ve always wanted to do. It was December. I decided I’d make that goal by July.

There were a few things that came together to set me on this path. I read Nina Yau’s Minimalist Manifesto (sadly no longer available). And I found myself with a chunk of money that had been in an investment account that closed. And I realized my intention with that money was never to put it into retirement funds. So instead I opened an account I named “Follow Your Heart” and pulled funds from there if I wanted to buy an inspiring book, take an interesting class, or travel.

I had just secured a four month volunteer position at the John C. Campbell Folk School. And decided this was a good time to do some of the things that had been on my list for a while. The Camino. A road trip visiting friends up and down the East Coast of the US. A trip to Italy.

So I took some more baby steps. At the start of 2011, I decided if I was going to move out of my apartment, I needed to start decluttering. Which I love doing anyway.

Long story short: it happened. Or I made it happen. Or the universe and I conspired to make it happen.

Whatever.

It happened.

Friends and strangers welcomed me into their homes on my roadtrips. Pet-sitting opportunities came my way. Another work exchange was offered. Friends and family helped me get enough frequent flyer miles in order to secure my tickets to Spain to walk the Camino de Santiago.

Over the course of that year, I decided I wanted to move to Asheville, North Carolina. And the universe sent me David and Deanne who offered to host me in their home as long as it took for me to get settled into life in that town or until the arrangement no longer worked for either party.

It worked.

Better than I could have imagined.

While there, I hung poster-sized post-its on my wall. I was inspired one day to draw my ideal home. A stream. A yard. A garden. A small cozy place to call home. I wrote that friends would come to visit and tell me it was the perfect place for me.

And then it happened.

And then it happened again. In December, 2019, I unexpectedly found myself working towards a goal I couldn’t imagine happening by the end of 2020. But a lot of things happened in 2020 that none of us ever could have imagined. And so it was that my goal of becoming location independent was reached.

So this year, I’m employing the same goal setting strategy I used in December, 2019 and a couple times since then. Here’s the link if you want to try it for yourself.

And here’s to a successful 2023 for all of us. I look forward to seeing what the universe and I can create together.

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