What You'll Find Here: Common-sense tips, great resources, personal reflections, and true stories for aspiring "bloomers" of any age. Note that Prill only posts when her thoughts don’t fit into a Tweet or FB update.

February 8th, 2012

I recently asked my Twitter followers what they hoped to be doing five years from now.  I love this question because if you can figure out what you want, you can work backwards to plot the steps needed to reach your goals. The problem is, projecting that far into the future isn’t always easy to do.

Take me, for instance. I don’t even know where I’ll be living five years from now. It depends on how old my 89-year old mom lives to be and what year my 60-year old husband retires. If mom is still with us in five years, I’ll probably be spending the majority of my time taking care of her. On the other hand, if mom dies in a year or two and my husband retires early, we could just as easily be living overseas as in Connecticut.

In other words, I’m in limbo.

That said, as I went through the questions below, which I found on a great website called MindTools, some specific goals came into focus. For example, one thing I’d like to do right away is to renew my high-school English teaching certificate so that the next time someone at the literacy center where I volunteer takes a leave of absence, I can fill in. I’d also like to keep sending my 2 1/2 year-old granddaughter Lydia weekly postcards until she’s 18. (The photo above is of Lydia and me.) And certainly five years from now I want to be able to rightfully call myself a novelist.

So what do you hope to be doing in 2017? No idea? Then ask yourself the following:

  • Career - What level do you want to reach in your career, or what do you want to achieve?
  • Financial - How much do you want to earn, by what stage? How is this related to your career goals?
  • Education - Is there any knowledge you want to acquire in particular? What information and skills will you need to have in order to achieve other goals?
  • Family - Do you want to be a parent? If so, how are you going to be a good parent? How do you want to be seen by a partner or by members of your extended family?
  • Artistic - Do you want to achieve any artistic goals?
  • Attitude - Is any part of your mindset holding you back? Is there any part of the way that you behave that upsets you? (If so, set a goal to improve your behavior or find a solution to the problem.)
  • Physical - Are there any athletic goals that you want to achieve, or do you want good health deep into old age? What steps are you going to take to achieve this?
  • Pleasure - How do you want to enjoy yourself? (You should ensure that some of your life is for you!)
  • Public Service – Do you want to make the world a better place? If so, how?


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