Recently, I discovered that I was a winner in my paythebills job’s most coveted contest. I’m not going to lie, ever since I became a store manager three years ago, winning this contest has been something that I’ve hoped for. Not in one of those realistic ways, like saving up to pay for a cool vacation or to buy the next awesome book. No. It was more like one of those “wouldn’t it be nice if I win the lottery” kind of wishful thinking.
For two years, I was a finalist, good enough for recognition and a gift card (for which I was truly grateful), but just missed out on the grand prize. So, when I finally won for 2011, I actually didn’t believe it. I still don’t. Heck, I probably won’t really believe I won the contest till I’m actually at the conference.
Isn’t that the funniest thing? Something that was beyond a possibility suddenly becoming a reality and here I am, not even believing it. I guess my issue is that I haven’t really reached an end point. In fact, I feel like I just climbed a reeeaaallllyyyy long flight of stairs, reached the platform, only to see another flight of stairs. And, another. A never-ending spiral of increasing challenges and expectations.
It’s enough to make me dizzy if I think about it for too long.
I know I shouldn’t be surprised. There will always be another milestone to reach, another goal to shoot for, another layer of complexity to master. That’s life. Besides, any goal worth pursuing isn’t about arriving at a destination, but the stuff you learn about yourself along the way. Or something.
So instead of freaking out about the sky-high results that I’m expected to deliver year-over-year, and the ever-expanding areas for which I’m held accountable, I’ve made a concerted effort to focus on my priorities week by week, measuring progress on them each month.
Eventually, I’ll get to a point where I can be in the moment and celebrate winning (probably during the conference in June). But, now, I have work to do. I need to train my mindset to meet a whole new level of expectations this year, and I have to answer this internal voice that questions if I can win again next year.
It’s a good thing I like challenges.
How about you? Any big goals for this year? Where do you see yourself a year from now?