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So, you’ve decided on the goals you want to achieve in order to transform your life into something more closely resembling your ideal. You’re very excited and want to share your goals with others, seeking their support and encouragement. But should you rush out and broadcast your precious ambitions to everyone you know? Should you post about it on social media, talk about it with your friends over lunch, call your family and confide all your plans to them? How do you decide how much, if anything, to share, and with whom? This is a complicated issue and a personal decision, which calls for careful consideration.
There are, of course, advantages to sharing your goals with the right people: Speaking your heart’s desire out loud may help it to manifest. It’s fun to share your vision of Your Ideal Life with people you know, especially at the beginning when you’re bursting at the seams to talk about it to someone! Sharing your goals can help keep you accountable, because when other people know about your goals, it makes it harder for you to slack off on working towards fulfilling them.
You may feel it would be helpful to get other people’s opinions on the goals you have chosen. This, however, can be a double-edged sword. It’s true that an objective third party might be able to point out where you possibly can tweak or rethink a certain goal, and upon reflection you might decide they’re right. But on the other hand, these are YOUR goals, and your best source of guidance is to pray about them and follow where your deep intuition leads you, rather than take someone else’s words at face value. Of course, if your Ideal Life will include another person who has similar goals (for instance, a spouse or partner), you can be of great help to one another by sharing your dreams and aspirations. Two people working toward the same goals is doubly powerful!
If you have a very supportive relative or friend whom you trust implicitly and know will support you and have your best interests at heart, sharing your goals with them can be very edifying to you. Because they love you, they will encourage you in any way they can. Sometimes, they even might be able to assist you in practical ways to achieve them.
The important thing, though, is to be very selective and extremely careful about any person to whom you choose to entrust your most cherished dreams. As unpleasant as it may be to acknowledge, there always will be people out there who do not wish the best for you. They will be more than happy to shoot down your most cherished dreams, telling you every conceivable reason why you cannot possibly attain them, thus filling you with doubt and insecurity. This could be because of their natural negativity or bitterness, a narrow-minded, cynical viewpoint, or rigid, fatalistic religious beliefs. If you know people like this, do not share your goals and dreams with them. They will only undermine your confidence and possibly discourage you from even trying.
You also might invite envy from people who are too lazy or uninspired to set and pursue their own goals. Such people might openly ridicule you, both to your face and behind your back, because they envy your ambition and optimism. Sometimes they may actually try to sabotage your efforts to attain your goals. “He who guards his mouth and his tongue, guards his soul from troubles.” Proverbs 21:23
Another drawback is that revealing your intentions and plans can put you in the position of having to defend them to other people, which is unnecessary and can cause your confidence to falter. You do not have to defend your goals to anyone; they are yours, and nobody has the right to challenge you about them, as long as they will not cause harm to other people.
Once having spoken about your goals, you might then become fearful of looking foolish if you fail. This lack of confidence can cause you to sabotage your own efforts. Also, sometimes our goals will change with time. If this happens with some of your goals, you might feel silly admitting this to people, who may not take you seriously after that.
Most importantly, sometimes people close to you might feel threatened by this new vision of your Ideal Life. They may feel that you will change and no longer be the person they feel comfortable with. Many times, family, spouses and friends secretly don’t want you to succeed, not necessarily out of malice, but out of fear that it will change your relationship with them. This is possible, because as you grow and change for the better as a result of your goals, you may well lose people who cannot accept the new you, nor grow and change along with you. This is a part of the process that you need to be willing to face.
One very important thing to realize is that the energy we expend by talking about our goals will sometimes seriously deplete the energy we have left to actually pursue them. Ever notice how the people you know who do the most talking usually accomplish the least? Although there is merit in “speaking your goals out loud” to yourself or to a select few people, wasting too much time and energy talking about all the wonderful things you plan to do may mean that by the time you decide to start working on them, you are already tired of the subject and find your enthusiasm has waned, rather than grown stronger. Talkers talk, but doers do — so be a doer, not a talker!
“Stop talking to people about what you will do; show them instead what you are doing.” says British psychologist, author, and broadcaster Robert Holden, PhD.
When you have achieved your goals and are well on the way to your Ideal Life, you’ll find that other people will want to talk to you about what you have accomplished, rather than the other way around. You can then use your experiences and success to help, inspire, and encourage them to work towards their own best life!
In most cases, it might be wise, especially at the beginning, to limit your goals and plans to your vision board, goal scrapbook, treasure box, or Ideal Life screensaver, as described in my previous post, “The Power of Visual Imagery.” Cherish your dreams within your heart and talk them over with God, and with your Guardian Angel or Guide if this fits into your personal beliefs. Ask for support and direction from the spiritual realm rather than the earthly one. Create your plan of action and then implement it, instead of wasting time and energy, and risking possible setbacks, by talking about them with other people.
In the words of Benjamin Franklin: “Well done is better than well said….Words may show a man’s wit, but actions his meaning.”