‘What are your goals?’

  • Published
  • By Maj. Kathryn Brown
  • 42nd Force Support Squadron commander
Oftentimes, we get so busy with our day-to-day lives that we forget to see the bigger picture and lose sight of things. For me personally, I find setting goals to be a helpful way for me to focus on what is important in both my personal and professional life.

Our short-term goals are often stepping stones to long-term goals. Taking time to periodically assess your goals is critical to not only achieving them, but also ensuring they are relevant and obtainable.

I'd like to share four goals that I consider both personal and professional. Hopefully, you are able to relate to them or find they trigger thoughts of your own as you set and reassess your own goals.

My first goal is to become a better listener. In the high ops-tempo world we all live in, it is necessary to continually multi-task. Multi-tasking is often a necessity in our fast-paced lives, but are we really good at it?

For me, sometimes the answer is "not really." One thing that may fall to the wayside is whether we are really listening to others. It is so important to listen ... a goal of mine that I am forever working on.

It's a goal I extend to my personal life at home and at work with my Airmen, peers and leadership. As we all know, when we do not take the time to truly listen to others and reflect before jumping into action, misunderstandings and errors may occur.

It may sound like a New Year's resolution, but my second goal is to improve my fitness. There is nothing more exhilarating than completing a run and clearing your mind. It's a hard-to-describe feeling that I know many people share. It's an empowering feeling; one that builds a quiet confidence and peace of mind.

I certainly have much work to be done in this area, but that's what goals are for ... continuous improvement. Fitness is such a big part of the Air Force, so wherever you are in term of fitness, set a goal and aim to improve each workout.

A third goal I'd like to share is one that I achieved. One of my personal goals in my life was to find my twin sister's grave. She was stillborn while my dad was assigned to the U.S. Embassy in Panama as a Marine Security Guard.

When I deployed to Howard AFB in 1999, I set aside some time to look for my sister's grave, and after much difficulty, I found her. I felt fulfilled like you can not imagine. The feeling is probably too personal to describe, but I tell you this because everyone has these types of deep-seated, unique personal goals.

Finally, and closest to my heart, is my fourth goal. As the mother of two young children and wife to a loving husband, I often feel that I am struggling to balance my role as a Mother, Wife and Airman. I use a capital "M" and "W," because those words deserve to be capitalized, just as Airman deserves a capital "A."

I read articles and listen to speakers repeatedly talk about the importance of balancing one's life. I guess the reason it's talked about so often, is because it can be so challenging at times. I have much work to do to achieve this goal, and, believe me, I work on it daily. This is the most important personal goal in my life at this moment and one that I struggle with the most.

Whatever your goals may be, I find that struggling is a necessary part of the process of achieving the goal. If goals were easy, then they weren't goals at all, but simply underestimated beliefs of what is possible. Take time to figure out your own goals, and, more importantly, devote time to achieve them.