Is Your Stretch Goal Too Stretched?

Get Aligned With Your ‘Why’

I have no desire to rappel down a 13 story building. Yet in June of this year, there is a slight chance I may be doing just that. It’s not a marathon, so not something I can train for. It’s a total mental type of training. At least that’s my take. My friend and former university roomie, who is trying to persuade me to literally take the leap says she’s told the experience leaves you feeling fabulous when it’s done. A real sense of accomplishment. Hmmmm.

Of course, it’s not just leaping from a building. I would be part of a committee to get teams to enter and fundraise for a very worthy and special cause. The problem is, I don’t feel I can commit to the committee and ask people to take on this challenge if I’m not stepping up and doing it myself. That just doesn’t feel aligned. I suggested I be put on the golf committee. That I can do. But she wasn’t having it. She needs me for the rappel-down-a-steep-high-building committee. So, I’m still floundering.

I’m not adverse to creating outlandish goals for oneself. The very nature of my line of work exposes me to all kinds of bold and brazen ideas. In the corporate setting where I spend most of my time, stretch goals tend to be part of an annual development plan and would be something the organization wants you to achieve in the coming year. Something that is above and beyond your normal level of performance. And that’s fine if you created or co-created the idea and are enthusiastic about it. But what, if on the other hand, you just don’t want to be stretched?

This is not about being lazy or underachieving. Any of you who are reading this are likely in roles where you excel in the technical aspects of your work, have a very full schedule already, and are maxed out trying to master both your work and family commitments. Why would we possibly want to be stretched more then we already are?

Why exactly. Before accepting to take on a stretch goal never mind ‘how’ you plan to get it done, you must first determine the ‘why’. Why would you take that on? If it’s an immediate feeling of excitement and sort of hopeful, giddy ‘what if I can actually pull this off?’ sentiment, then you’re on the right track. But if you hesitate because it just doesn’t feel completely right to you, then you need to look for ways to get aligned or say no and find another stretch goal where you do feel that inner drive to go above and beyond.

For me personally, I have a big decision to make. Am I going to take on this over the top challenge or not?  I’ll share my own thought process below to see if I can get aligned to the ‘why’ so you can see how this process works…

First, rappelling down a 130 ft drop isn’t motivating for me. It’s daunting – but not in a good way. So I have to look at other angles. Fundraising is sort of common. It’s necessary of course for any type of non-profit, but I can think of all kinds of ways I could fundraise without risking an anxiety attack (*note to self: I sometimes get mini freak out moments driving across the bridge during high winds). Still not feeling this challenge. Still on the fence.

The last angle I can think of is the organization who is requesting my help. Make a Wish Foundation is an organization that arranges experiences described as wishes to children with life-threatening medical conditions. And as I pause to write this, I can’t imagine anyone more courageous then one of these children who has been told they have this sort of life limitation. Now I get it. Do you feel the alignment now?

Yes, it takes courage to rappel down a building. But it’s nothing compared to the courage these children demonstrate…I guess I’m in.

Wishing you Full Career Alignment and Success,

P.S. If you’d like to join me in both literally and figuratively stepping over the edge, find out more by visiting www.ropeforhope.ca for your local event details.

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This entry was posted in Avoid Burnout, fundraising, leadership, mindset, Motivation. Bookmark the permalink.
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