Focus: What do you want to do?


The calendar officially says December. The holidays. The pace. The weather. The end of the year.
The year’s 12th month is either welcome or despised: a reminder of tasks undone or accomplished, of goals unmet or fulfilled, and of plans waylaid or on track.
I cringed when I reviewed my list last week of what I wanted to do this year and what still needs to be done. I veered off course somewhere between the goal-setting and the finished product. Veered? Heck, I’m in the wrong state!
Maybe I’m living the new year’s resolution guilt a month early, but I’m going to share the guilt and see if you’re on track, too.
Do you know where you’re going to? What’s the most important thing you need to get started or work toward or finish today? This week? This month? Next year?
My friend Jill is the most goal-oriented person I know. She sets both long- and short-term goals for her personal life and her business (she’s a one-man shop). And she prods me in that direction, too.
“Well, I figure you’ve got six years,” she told me as we were discussing life’s directions two years ago. In one fell swoop, she carved the infinite “someday” into a deadline. That’s what triggers action. Thought directs action.
Too often, we get caught up in the day-to-day tasks, jobs that are “urgent” but aren’t really that important (there is a difference). We need to keep our eyes on the bigger picture.
Someday my farm will …
Someday I want to …
Someday I will stop …
I’ve read it takes 21 days of concentration and repetition to change a habit. If you are used to winging it and not planning out your days, it will take you almost a month to get in the groove.
What comes next? Not next week or next month or next year, but in 10 years. Fifteen, 20 years. You can direct the internal workings of your farm or business, but what outside factors are going to blindside you?
“… the pace of change in our world is going to increase, and will be relentless and unforgiving,” writes Jim Carroll, trends and innovation expert.
“If you look at the future as nothing more than a threat to worry about, rather than an opportunity to be grabbed, then you are looking in the wrong place,” he adds.
To keep your goals in sight, you’ll have to change direction now and then.
“The secret to happiness is to have infinite flexibility with both the path and the goal,” writes journalist Rachel Simon, who also wrote Riding The Bus With My Sister.
“… the paths we switch into and the goals to which we reorient ourselves lead us into far more rewarding lives than what we’d initially hoped for.”
Do you know where you’re going to?
(Farm and Dairy Editor Susan Crowell can be reached at 1-800-837-3419 or at


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