You know I ask many people that question in my line of work. The answers vary from person to person. However, the theme running through most of the replies is the same: They simply don’t know. To emphasize the point that they should, I cut the time frame down to 3 years, then 1 year. Same muffled answers come flying back to me: They don’t actually have any idea.
It is not their fault and therefore I am not blaming anyone for giving such vague answers. In fact I empathize with them. It is one of the reasons I do what I do; to help people find a purpose and then give them the all the tools they need to follow it.
You see when you do not have a clear vision of where you are going the mundane can get you down. Small matters can become large issues. I see it all the time. Frustration becomes a big part of their work especially, and can creep into relationships and life in general.
Let me give you an example.
Somebody is doing a job they do not particularly like yet have no goals to change profession, gun for promotion or maybe start their own business. (Starting their own business might not be their cup of tea). Tasks, demands from the boss, requests from customers; they all become increasingly frustrating over time.
And then you can become morbidly addicted to this kind of madness. Moaning and groaning about work and such become habitual. I am sure you have met people like this yourself.
With clarity of where you will be this time next year, in 3 and 5 years time puts a stop to all that nonsense. It can change your attitude to what you do instantly.
I once washed pots and pans in a busy kitchen for 6 months. It wasn’t a job I chose to do but I had a grand vision for myself and I therefore viewed it simply as a stepping-stone to a more brighter and compelling future that I knew was coming my way. You could say for that six months that I was ‘happily discontent’. When the emotionally charged chef, under pressure to get 15 steaks out on time to a ravenous, raucous stag party, would scream at me because I hadn’t washed the steak diane sauce pot quickly enough, I would simply smile. I knew it wasn’t going to be a permanent position or become a way of life for me.
I had big dreams to fill (And still do incidentally)
So where will you be in 5 years? 3 years? 6 months? Have you painted the picture in your mind? Do you remind yourself each day? Are you taking action steps as often as possible towards making that outcome a reality?
If you do, not only will it help you take small niggles in your stride but also the larger stuff. I will go as far as to say it will make you happier, relieve stress and improve any strained relationships.
This is one way I have dealt with those mundane situations in my life. Goals and a clear plan of how you intend to achieve them are of paramount importance. And remember, writing them out is the easy part; doing something about them is what matters.
Don’t get addicted to a boring way of life. That is not why you are here. There is better out there just waiting for you to grasp it.
If you care to look.