Next step is to work backwards. Again, one of the most difficult things about a long-term goal is that, without a Drill Sargent, a professor or a supervisor busting your balls, it's easier to settle into leisure 35 minutes (or whatever your commute is) after sliding down the dinosaur's back. 5 years later the future becomes the present and dreams remain unfulfilled.
Connecting the future with the present is quite easy, though, if you break each goal down into components and work backwards. For instance--to run a marathon next year seems like an impossibility to someone who can't run 1/2 mile today. And a week or two struggling with 14 or 13 minute miles will discourage all but the most dedicated. But set it up to look like this and it doesn't seem so bad:
Marathon - Dec. 2013
20 Miles - Nov. 2013
17 Miles - Oct. 2013
15 Miles - Sept. 2013
6 miles April 2013
4 miles Feb. 2013
2 miles Jan. 2013
1 mile Dec. 2013
Go out for walk today!
If you have your 7 (or 2 or 9) goals, write out how to get there (for each one, drop down style) and spend 90% of your free time in the next year working towards them. The result of 'working backwards'?: in an instant the present becomes the future; depression and anxiety become joy; every moment takes on a significance that previously was absent. A direct relation between what
you do and who
you are becomes tangible--an everyday, every-hour, every-second occurrence. Be confrontational with yourself now, enjoy the rewards soon enough. New-found confidence begets audacity.
I say this ~22 years into mindlessly practicing all of the above, crossing off a list of the things I wanted to do and experience in the world. Just be forewarned: 1) desires increase with possessions and 2) the hairy hands of fate are pugilistic and will try to pummel you as much as they can.
Restless? I know I am. My next goal? After Austin I'm doing 1000 miles (in one day). On the Panigale. Muhuhaahaaa.
HAH! As I typed that a piece of a molar glaciered off in my mouth. Impending doom? Bring it on, hairy hands.
Had Catfish, btw, SGrider. Along with one too many Sazeracs. Forigive me if no pics are forthcoming. :)