During a recent Moon Circle we were discussing the archer. How they pull back their arrow, pause to assess the lay of the land, then take aim toward the target. Once they are sure and ready, they release the arrow, hoping it hits the target. We then talked about how this is similar to the beginning of a new year and goal setting.
Did I lose you? Let me explain.
Pull the arrow back, pause and reflect
For goal setting, I need to stop and reflect, not only the past year, but on past goals. How did they work out? What worked and what didn’t? You see this year, my overall theme is Take the Leap! So, I have to pull back and think of other times I took a big leap. For me, this was 19 years ago when I moved from St. Louis to New York City at the ripe old age of 24 to pursue my goal of musical theatre. Now, that goal did not pan out, but living in NYC sure did as I am still here loving every minute. Another example I can think of is leaving my corporate job to be a stay at home mom to my baby 9 years ago. This was a huge leap of faith and another one that was beautiful and such a special time in my life.
Next, I have to use what I learned during reflection to create those next steps for my goals. So, for my goal of Making Our Apartment a Home I have to look back and think about what worked in the past and how I can apply that to this goal. Let’s look at the big leap of moving to NYC, I was organized, did research, and was prepared to the Nth degree to move to a brand new city. For decluttering and beautifying our apartment I can use that same strategy – read books and articles on cleaning, work with my husband to come up with plans and systems to use as we go from room to room, and we will get prepared before each cleaning session so we stay on task.
Another way to take aim is to see what you want at the end of the year and work backwards. I For example, I want to Live a Magical Life, but what exactly does that mean for me? I want to have a daily ritual that connects me to spirit and magic everyday. I want to have a journaling practice that nourishes my soul. I want to read books about Goddesses and learn more about the cultures and customs of countries I don’t know. These are all the smaller steps toward the main goal. Now I have my aims, my processes and my systems.
Once ready, let the arrow go toward the target
This is the actual step of doing the damn thing….which is probably the hardest step when we think about goal setting, but if we think of the archer, it’s the easiest – you just let go. Can we use that mindset for our goals? Can we make the act of actually doing our daily tasks that help us achieve our goals easier? Honestly, I’m still working on this mindset, but I hope having this image of an archer in my head will help me when things start feeling hard.
Because, here’s the thing, doing big things and taking big leaps is hard and changing systems and habits is also hard. When I moved to NYC at 24, that was hard – yes, it was exciting and fun and felt like a big glorious adventure – but it was also hard at times. Leaving my job to stay at home with a brand new baby was fun and amazing, but it was also hard at times. 2020 was hard a LOT of times, but we made it through, and we can do it again!
Can you use the image of an archer to help you with your 2021 goals? Have you ever taken a big leap before? What big leaps are you planning for this year? I would love to know in the comments below.