Rethinking My 2016 Goals Thanks To Disney World

Rethinking My 2016 Goals Thanks To Disney World
This is one of my favorite times of the year.  As one year comes to a close and another looms on the horizon, there are many articles, tips and pieces of advice on how to pretty much organize any part of your life from making and hitting career, exercise or weight goals to organizing your garage.
I am one of those people who cannot get enough material about organization, systems and processes.  I dream of one day having the perfectly labeled pantry and immaculate garage.  I love getting the new, shiny notebook and plotting out these tips and techniques to achieve organizational bliss.


I always start out with gusto and within a few months look over in the corner of a room to see my not so shiny notebook untouched, unloved and completely neglected.  I won’t even mention what my garage looks like.

I fall into the trap of single minded, goal achievement.

I fail miserably and feel worse than I did when setting the goals after reflecting on how I did not meet my goals for the ending year.  Let the wine and Haagen-Dazs flow!

Not this year.  I had an awakening at of all places – Disney World.

For Christmas we spent the day – and night – at Disney World.  At 5:30 am we started like most everyone else, with a plan.

We had a plan of hitting certain rides, watching the time, scurrying from one place to another beating out all the crowds.  We had a plan. We were determined.  We were going to hit our goals, doggone it, not matter what.

That lasted until about 7 am, when we ran into a snafu right off the bat at the entrance.  After about a half hour delay, we were off.  But the crowd had already began to infiltrate, we had to dodge and weave to get to specified locations to enjoy ourselves.

Oh no!

We became rats in a maze and the cheese was unobtainable.  We blindly followed crowds and became defeated at the sight of lines.

That is when it hit us.  Here we were in 80 degree weather, not a cloud in the sky, in the happiest place on earth and we were concerned about hitting targets.

What the heck.

So we abandoned our original plans by remembering one key piece of advice we had both heard – it is not the destination, but the journey.

We stopped making specific plans and began to enjoy the scenery around us.  We ignored the adults scoffing at their kids that there was no time to enjoy the things they were doing at that time because they had to hit their schedule and began enjoying the laughter and delight in the kids’ faces.

We stopped planning every move and strolled through Frontier Land thoroughly enjoying a turkey leg.  We stepped out of the way of the families that were pushing through to get to their next destination and had fun conversations with other strollers.

We hit every single ride we wanted, and more.  Our longest wait time was 25 minutes, but that was one ride; the rest we eased on in 10 minutes or less.  We saw, and more importantly experienced, every single thing we wanted and more than we anticipated.

We stopped to find ourselves front and center five minutes before the parade.  Best spots in the place and we just happened to luck into them by sheer accident.

Goals are like that.  It is great to have a goal; however, if you only focus on achieving that goal, you miss the most fun, learning and enjoyable part about the whole adventure – the trip itself.

I have decided 2016 goals are going to be more like the adventure of Disney World: an eye on the goal but the focus on the experience.

There was only one ride we did not ride which we wanted to; but given the amazing adventure and fun that we had, we were okay with that.  Instead, we did something neither expected.

Neither one of us are roller coaster ride people.  I do not like them, never had.  A bad experience on Space Mountain when I was a kid turned me off on them forever.  But that day, we were having such a fun time that we threw caution to the wind – we rode it.

We ended up having a great time.  I’m still not doing loopy-loopy roller coasters, but on that one day, I rode a real one.

When you take your eye off only the achievement of the goals, you find yourself doing more than you anticipated because you are enjoying the experience.

Looking back on our adventure that night at the resort, we were amazed at how everything just seemed to fall right into place for us.  We realized it was because we were enjoying the moments in between the goals rather than checking off the goals one by one.

Yes, 2016 the goal is to enjoy the ride along the way to the goals and in doing so, I know I can mark off all those goals I plan on making – and more.  This begins with stopping to look at where I am now, today, and enjoying what this day brings.


I help identify and set a path to achieve individual career and company goals by using the V Formula:

Your Value + Your Voice = Visibility

Visibility is the leverage to move up or move on in your career; expand your book of business, grow your company and strengthen your team.


Lisa K. McDonald, Owner and Principal of Career Polish, Inc. is a speaker and seminar facilitator at companies and professional organizations speaking to leadership, sales, teams, transitioning/downsized employees and networking groups about career mobility, personal branding, networking, creating executive presence and achieving career movement success. To find out more, visit Career Polish, Inc.

Why I Think New Year Resolutions Bite … and Celebration Lists Rock

new years pictureI am not a big fan of doing anything that sets you up for failure. This is why I am not a big fan of making New Year Resolutions or online dating sites, but that is another story.

I understand and appreciate the idea behind New Year’s Resolutions; I just think they come with too much pressure and unrealistic expectations.

I love the pictures of an empty gym parking lot on December 30 and a packed parking lot on January 2. The third picture should be another empty lot in March.

I used to not make New Year’s Resolutions, but when I told anyone this they would look at me like I had two heads. Unheard of! Why on earth would someone choose to not subject themselves to a big, ol’ life changing to-do list on the same date as most everyone else and then proclaim it to all? I know I’m a killjoy.

I also do not like the judgment of resolutions.

I am five foot tall and maybe 100 pounds soaking wet. If my Fall were filled with lots and lots of the good stuff including wine, chili, lasagna, ham and beans and other wonderful Midwest Fall food, I might make a resolution to lose weight.

This would be met with, “You are so tiny you don’t need to lose weight.” Same would be said if I made a resolution of working out.

I did yoga for the first time a couple of weeks ago. I really liked it – after we were done. During the yoga I had many a conversation with my body about how it does not care to move as though I was elastic, pleads of not having gas and a reminder that there would be wine after the session. Welcome to my world of work outs.

I also like my bad habits and have no desire to part ways with them at this time.

So now, my resolution is simple: to be less of a historian and more of an adventurer. Most do not know what I mean or how to respond to this and that works for me. Stunned or confused silence is my friend.

By the way, what it means is that I want to continue to look less and less on my past (particularly my learning experiences, labeled by some as failures) and look more to my future with great excitement and participation.

I am not a glass half empty or half full kind of girl, I’m more of a glass has room for a refill kind of girl.

Instead of New Year’s Resolutions, I like to make a Celebration List; I am a killjoy and a list maker.

I choose not to look forward to a brand new year with the attitude I need to change or improve major or all aspects of my life. I choose instead to look back on the things I am proud of and build on those.

I had plenty of learning experiences and some pretty great successes:

  • I began walking with a group of women. On the weekends and throughout the week we logged miles and miles while we have wonderful conversations about work, life, men, children and ideas. I would like to build on this by doing it more often.
  • I was able to get one of the boys to walk on the trail without dragging me along or stopping to pee on every blade of grass. I would like to build on this by being able to bring both my boys on these walks and not be banned from the trail. My boys are my dogs, Luke and Bandit.
  • I bought a car, and said goodbye to two. I am going to and have started building on this by learning how to do simple car things – like change spark plugs, O2 sensors, fixing mufflers and learning about water pumps and other car stuff.I built a beautiful garden complete with an arbor and gate and filled it with lots of vegetables and herbs. Some actually survived! I would like to build on this by not planting so many cucumber plants, those things go crazy, and to take cooking classes to learn how to use those herbs.
  • I built a fire pit and stone walkway. I will build on this by sitting in front of the pit more often, it is an awesome place for meditation – and wine.
  • I completely redid my master bedroom. I will build on this by building a custom closet organization myself.
  • I wrote articles that had tremendous outreach and connected with new clients all over the world. I would like to build on this by offering more.
  • I had great ideas come to me, all in haphazard ways which finally came to make sense and will be building on this to launch something exciting in 2015.

I did not end 2014 in tip top shape, eating healthy and having a monstrous bank account; but then again, those were not my goals. My goal was to be happy, and I succeeded beautifully.

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