goal-setting minus the pressure

This week a small group of my beautiful coworkers and I took on some vision and goals at 8am. In the past at Lululemon, vision and goals meetings felt overwhelming to me, if I am being honest. Questions like “where do you want to be in 10 years” and  “who am I” felt like huge questions that I had no idea how to answer in the two minutes we were given to think on it. This time was a bit different, and I can’t wait to share with you what I discovered and the process my amazing friend took us through to get there. The process we took to writing goals was different than usual, but created a much less overwhelming experience for all of us. I wanted to write it out here in hopes that someone may be looking for some direction in their lives and may need a bit of guidance getting there.

The sequence of events went something like this: Meditation, Ask a Friend, Values, Feelings and Desires, Goals, and Action. Now I’ll explain each one!

Meditation

First, we started with a clearing meditation. If you are looking for a place to access guided meditations then I would suggest checking out the app ‘Headspace.’

Ask a Friend

Next was something that I find to be the most important part. We were told to ask 2 questions to someone in the room that knows us extremely well and to someone who may not know us as well. The questions were:

“What do you appreciate about me?”

“What do I bring to a room?”

 

I was so moved by the responses I received and since it is one of my goals to be more open on this blog, I will share them with you!

I asked, “What do you appreciate about me?”

-Your excitement about opportunities that present themselves in your life.

-Your commitment to the things that you want to do/achieve.

-Your willingness to help someone 10 times out of 10.

-Your direction and focus on your career and life at a young age.

-Your eagerness and willingness to learn.

-You see each stage of your life as a journey and a growing moment. You learn from things that did or did not go well.

-Your eagerness and openness to learn.

(Common thread in eagerness to learn with more than one person. #nerdlife)

I asked, “What do I bring to a room?”

-Uniqueness in both your style and personality.

-Founded/practiced knowledge.

-Lightheartedness.

-Your chill vibe (don’t get flustered easily) (This one always surprises me when people say this to me)

-You always get things done.

-Positivity.

The reason why this was such an important step is that this whole goal setting session started with hearing positive affirmations about yourself. It began this process from a positive and loving place instead of an anxious and overwhelmed place. You do not have to “figure things out” when you think about setting goals but rather open yourself up and see what shines through. That has always been my largest misconception when sitting down to set goals.

For you, maybe you are with others that you can ask this question to or maybe you need to send out some emails/texts and see what you get back. I suggest picking friends or people other than your spouse/significant other. You will be more surprised at how others see you when it comes from a friend, instead of from your love who knows you better than you know yourself and you expect those answers from.

This part of goal setting helps you see trends in what others recognize in you and is an amazing experience for self-acceptance and confidence.

(If you get answers that do not feel authentic to who you are in a negative way, maybe it’s time to adjust who you surround yourself with or how you are putting yourself out into the world.)

So this was fun. I also got to share what I appreciate about others. I watched my friends see that they are genuine when they don’t always feel that way and that they are a light for others when they weren’t aware. This is SUCH a cool feeling!

After this fun exercise, we moved into our own space to start getting pen to paper.

Values

Using a list of values, pick 5 that are important to you. Choose values you have now, strive for, or are important for you to recognize in others.

4 – values list

I added the list so you can do this exercise as well!

My top 5 values were:  clear-mindedness, compassion, growth, passion, and spirituality.

Narrow down that list of values to the top 3.

(I chose growth, compassion, and clear-mindedness.)

Feelings and Desires

Write your desires.

Start by writing down “I desire…” on your paper. Then, without over-thinking, write down words that represent what you desire in your life.

I’ll give you an example based on my answer: I desire…growth, compassion, love, trust, vulnerability, spirituality, guidance, real, helpful, deep authenticity, strength, confidence, beauty, openness, clear-mindedness, ambition, raw, passion.

Write how you want to feel. Feelings and desires can be similar or vastly different.

“I want to feel…”

I want to feel… confident, clear-mindedness, genuine, grounded real, open, excited, joyful, connected to energy, spiritual, light-hearted, beautiful, loving, like I’m making an impact, powerful, brave, courageous, kind.

Whew.

Are you feeling good or heavy? Are you writing these out? Don’t put too much pressure on yourself, just free-write. You don’t have to share with anyone but yourself.

We are close to the end, my friends.

Now that we established what we value, what we desire, what we want to feel, how others see us, etc., we have established our “why.” Did you realize that? This whole time we were finding why we want to do what we want to do. Now when we set goals, we can set them based on a why and not meaningless sentences with no true intention behind them.

Goals

So, based on what you value, what you desire, and how you want to feel: write.

Write down goals that are in line with the desires and feelings that you want. Write goals that are authentic to you. Doesn’t matter what they are; just let your pen grace that paper and see what comes out. Write them in reference to your career, personal life, and your health.

My goals:

-Grow spiritually through meditation and yoga practice.

-Yoga teacher training.

-Go to Ireland with Teddy.

-Write a book.

-Turn my blog into a more open, genuine, inspirational space.

-Own a space (possible coffee shop/co-working space/yoga studio?) I already have a name for this and vision for what I want it to look like, just have to get clear on what I want the space to be.

-Surround myself with genuine, like-minded individuals.

-Have a book, blog, business and lulu.

-Grow into a new role at Lululemon.

-Attend a yoga/meditation retreat in a different country.

-Clear-mindedness daily.

-Maintain a plant-based diet.

-Grow in my marriage.

-Have 2 beautiful babies.

All done?

Now, label them 1 year, 5 year, or 10 year goals.

1-Grow spiritually through meditation and yoga practice.

1-Yoga teacher training.

5-Go to Ireland with Teddy.

5-Write a book.

1-Turn my blog into a more open, genuine, inspirational space.

5-Own a space (possible coffee shop/co-working space/yoga studio?)

1-Surround myself with genuine, like-minded individuals.

10-Have a book, blog, business and lulu.

1-Grow into a new role at Lululemon.

5-Attend a yoga/meditation retreat in a different country.

1-Clear-mindedness daily.

10-Maintain a plant-based diet.

10-Grow in my marriage.(always, every year of my life with Teddy.)

5-Have 2 beautiful babies.

Action

Alright friends, almost there.

Pick out your top three 1 year goals and write why you want to achieve them. Then, write an action item that you will do in the next 24-48 hours.

Mine:

Grow spiritually through yoga/ yoga teacher training/meditation/ clear-mind (these were all similar so I combined them): I want to achieve this because I want to be in control of my anxiety and keep a strong spiritual connection. I enjoy and have fun doing yoga. I love the mental space that it brings me.

  • Action item: apply to yoga-teacher training.

Turn my blog into a more open, genuine, inspirational space: I want this space to be the true reflection of myself. I want people to feel something through my writing, and I want to make a difference.

  • Action item: new ‘about’ page, deeper posts (hello long post you are reading currently)

Surround myself with genuine, like-minded individuals: I need connection to feel whole, but know that boundaries and finding the right people is extremely important to me.

  • Action item: Start Financial Peace again with a group, start attending my friend’s “mastermind” group, keep working at Lululemon because I love who I work with.

 

And that was it, my friends. We ended with a clearing meditation and set off to conquer those action items! I should mention this whole thing was led by the beautiful Keri Kugler (@keri_kugler_ on IG). How freaking cool is it that I work at a place that gathers people for such cool shit?!

The reason I loved this form of goal-setting is that it all flowed so beautifully and truly felt as though I was breaking into my most authentic self. I encourage you to try this for yourself and see what comes of it. Welcome it, don’t resist what can come up for you. You can do this flow for material things you want to set goals for, ways you want to feel, career direction, etc.

If you made it all the way to the end of this post, I want to extend my gratitude for reading. I cannot wait to start training to become a yoga teacher, continuing to grow in many different directions, and connecting with beautiful minds. Be kind to yourself if setting goals feels hard and confusing. I have been there a billion times and will likely be there again. We all go through stages of clarity and stages of confusion. Let it be.

With love and light,

XO-Ash.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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4 Comments

  1. Phoebe
    February 26, 2017 / 8:52 am

    This is a really good post ash!

  2. ashley biehl
    February 26, 2017 / 10:59 am

    Thank you so much love! I appreciate you taking the time to read it and comment! <3

  3. Kelley
    February 26, 2017 / 1:48 pm

    I loved this post. You have & will always constantly inspire me!

  4. ashley biehl
    March 3, 2017 / 9:55 am

    Love you!!

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