Target setting

Whilst celebrating a friend’s special birthday at a Spa retreat (post lockdown conditions), I made a few valuable reflections on the importance of target setting and whether setting a target limits us?

First of all, I had forgotten just how refreshing and rejuvenating it is to take quality time out.  Time to laugh, listen, share funny stories, keep up to date and celebrate all that friendships entail.  Life should be fun – it is essential to make extended ringfenced time for each other in our busy lives!

Further reflections were had in the pool where I generally like to swim half a mile (40 lengths). I had been swimming for several lengths before realising I hadn’t started to count.  Without contacts or glasses on, I couldn’t read the display on the tracker on my watch either! So what? Initially I was irritated as I wouldn’t know if I hit my target.  However, without the pressure of counting lengths, I found the swim a much different experience. Gone was the negativity of the first 10 lengths, a constant reminder of the distance from the target, and the countdown of the last 10 in celebration of reaching the target.

Instead, the swim became more relaxed and focused on the strokes and breathing which inevitably gave way to more thinking time making the experience more enjoyable. I got out of the pool, not when hitting the magical number of 40, but instead when I felt ready. Anyway, glasses back on and the tracker had recorded 72. It wasn’t the Death Crawl scene from Facing the Giants (if you’ve never seen it, find it on Youtube – totally inspirational!) but it did make me think, do we set our targets with enough stretch and do they ever distract or limit us achieving more? In my opinion,  target setting is essential BUT we must always ensure it provides us with enough stretch.  The only way to know this is to track, measure, review and adapt.  Keep target setting real!

So… how does target setting affect you?