We all know the importance of goals. We live off of a societal norm of always needing to be the best of the best. We strive to reach the highest potential, and are taught that straight A's are the ticket to a successful career. 

These days, whether we admit to it or not, we look down on those who do not decide to go to university. Somehow they are not fulfilling their role in society by not getting an education. I think that is total BS. If someone decides not to go to a post-secondary institution and rack up hundreds and thousands of debt in student loans, they shouldn't be looked down upon. I do think however that you cannot expect to have a large and high standing career position if you do not get an education, because lets face it if that was the case then we wouldn't have universities at all, the average joe could be the manager of a corporation without going to business school. 

Why bring up the university topic? Well, let me take you on a trip down memory lane. 

I was merely a sophomore in high school, and the pressure was ON. I told myself that I needed to do the International Baccalaureate (IB) program because not only were my friends doing it, but it would help me get into a great university and eventually to a great career. Sure, I don't regret doing it, I worked hard and got decent marks, but why did I REALLY do it? Well my 10th grade self said that it would help me look better on my applications. APPLICATIONS. I didn't even do it because I WANTED to. I didn't WANT the challenge, I just wanted the name. I felt like if I opted out of this opportunity, then I would be seen as dumb, a failure, and not as ambitious as the others. 

Looking at that period of my life, I was not very happy. I didn't do anything because I wanted to, I always did it for the college application. Coming out of high school, I was ready to get the hell OUT. I wanted to leave my alma mater and start a new life, a happier life in university. Little did I know that my hard work only led to even HARDER work. The freedom you get when you leave home, it's indescribable. No longer will you have a curfew, no nagging parents to tell you to do your homework, and the freedom to bring whoever you want to your dorm room. But with that, comes a HUGE task of making sure you stay on track with the real reason why you're there, to learn and achieve what you set out to do. But, not only will you get freedom from home, you will also get freedom to find yourself. I was no longer a name on a piece of paper being sent out to admissions officers to accept/reject me based on test scores. I was someone finding their way, on my own and finding where I belong and where I will be happy. 

School is not for everyone, and believe me there were times where I was very close to throwing in the towel and deferring my standing. It's frustrating and you WILL have times like this. This is why setting goals is important not just in university, but in all aspects of your life. Having goals outside of school life is tremendously important too. 

Some people look at me like it's not a huge deal, but if you just take one day per month, reflect on what you did and what you didn't do, what you would like to accomplish this week, this month, within 6 months, a year...until you reach the 5 year goals and the 10 year goals which are frankly less important to have etched in right now. Little goals, turn into medium sized goals, which turn into a massive goals. And they can all be achieved, how you get there may change and expecting everything to go to plan isn't any way to live life. 

My list of goals for the week for example are: Do as best as I can on my math exam, write an article for MyTrendingStories, and rock climb at least 3 times this week. 

These are things that can be achievable, they are guidelines of things that I want to get done and trying to make time for things that I enjoy doing. Sure spontaneous events happen and let's be honest, goals are not always met, but THAT'S OKAY. They're just goals, not live or die requirements of the week. 

I might sound too optimistic, but it has helped me tremendously throughout the past few months. Setting goals and when you achieve something you set yourself, it feels so damn good and that puts you in a better mindset, a happier mindset. High school was not the time of setting personal life goals, and now that I have the independence, it's more important than ever to set these goals. 

I urge you to try it this next month, especially with the new school year coming. Achievements, big or small, are worth feeling good over and embrace that happiness because you deserve it. 

Published by Sarah Beaver