This was my first Christmas out of the UK. It was quite a strange one as the weather on the island of Fuerteventura was dramatically different (warm and sunny) to the usual winter I’m used to. It was a great experience and I enjoyed every day of it. I had a plan that whilst I was out of the country I was going to take some time to reflect on the past year and write down some goals and experiences I would like to have for this coming year.
Have you ever noticed how freely the mind thinks when it’s out of its usual everyday environment? I find it very uplifting. The island of Fuerteventura is very close to the Western Sahara desert; this meant that Fuertaventura had a vast area of sand dunes (which were miles upon miles of nothing but sand and mountains). This was a place where I found it easy to reflect and think the most (as well as mess about practicng cartwheels and sommersaults of course!). By the end of the holiday, I managed to plan out a map for this coming year and figure out some improvements I wanted to make in certain areas of my life.
As usual I was glad that the airport process was a lot quicker and smoother on the way back than on the way there, no delays, suitcase weight issues or long queues = WIN. As I put my luggage in the overhead cabin I paused to take a look at my boarding pass and check my seat number.
I was pleasantly surprised to find that for once I had a window seat. I usually don’t really mind what seat I have, but as it is the Christmas holidays, I knew it would be cold and dark when I arrived back in the UK. It would probably be quite a while before I got to see the warm sun and clear blue skies again.
So I sat down, got my book ready and waited for takeoff. Whilst the plane was cruising high in the air, I was thinking about how the airplane seemed to not be making any progress in distance at all. It looked and felt as though we were not actually moving anywhere or at the most moving very slowly.
Then something caught my attention. Another airplane went whizzing past the window and it was literally out of my eye sight in a matter of seconds.
It hit me at that point that we were actually moving at speeds of up around 580 mph. Had I not seen that airplane I wouldn’t have noticed the speed we were moving at towards our destination.
This got me thinking again. Goals in life are pretty much the same. It can sometimes seem that we are not getting anywhere towards our goals. Just like an airplane, we can’t actually see the end destination of our goal; so how do we know when we are on track and moving forward? Thats the importance of recognizing landmarks along the way.
What are landmarks?
Landmarks are signs that show us that we are progressing on the journey towards our goals (just like the airplane that flew past showed me how fast we were actually travelling).
Without the signs we wouldn’t know about our progress and would probably give up a short time afterwards. We can get big blatant signs or smaller ones; I believe the little subtle ones are the most important.
For example, when trying to lose weight it can seem as though no progress is being made and your body seems to look the same. Some people may give up at this point. However, if you look out for the little landmarks on the way you will notice your progress.
These little landmarks will come in all shapes and forms like you no longer eat as much junk food, your face looks healthier, you can walk for longer periods, you don’t feel as tired and sluggish as you used to, some of your clothes now fit you a little better etc. These are little signs showing you that you are on your way to achieving your goal.
The same applies to all goals in all areas of life such as health, business, finances, relationships, spiritual aspirations etc. The only difference is in the landmarks.
Everyone is progressing though life in some way and direction. It’s important to be aware of the signs and train your mind to look out for them.
It makes the journey to your goals a lot smoother and gives you a boost of inspiration to do more because you get confirmation of your progress. On the other hand it can also give you indications that you are off course and need re adjusting.
Some people rely on others to compliment them for encouragement and as a sign of recognition of their achievements. That isn’t necessary; in fact relying on other peoples compliments can sometimes do you more harm than good.
Looking out for the subtle landmark signs in my own progression has helped me a great deal. So, if you set yourself New Year resolutions, don’t forget to look out for the signs and landmarks throughout the year; it will most definitely help you moving forwards.
I hope you have a great year ahead!