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Long-Term Goal – Seeing the Future While Massaging my Scalp

long-term goal

I have a vision. A long-term goal. I can see where I am in the future. There’s no crystal ball involved, and I didn’t learn this from Steve Jobs and his stay hungry, stay foolish mantra. But, he inspired my long-term goal and he is part of the reason why I decided to step away from the computer for a while and watch the future.

I’m on the couch. The fingers on my left hand are touching the left side of my head. The fingers on my right hand are touching the right side of my head. I’m closing my eyes. I let my fingers play with my hair, massaging my scalp, while I can see exactly what’s going to happen to me.

Long-term goal and inspiration

My long term-goal is not what you expect. I’ve read so many interesting books and so many interesting articles, and blog posts, and everything I do is because I have been inspired by brilliant people. People like you. Yes, you inspire me. When you read what I write, no matter what you think. No matter how much you hate it. You are reading my words, and just the thought provides me with this wonderful feeling, and it makes me want to write more.

My long-term goal is not about love and hate. I don’t think much about love and hate, because it’s always about love. There’s never any hate or negative feelings involved. Never. Life is too beautiful to focus on anything but love. And love makes me want to become better at what I’m doing. It’s part of my long-term goal.

I’m challenging SPEED

When my eyes are closed, I can be wherever I want to be. I’m at a farm. Somewhere far away. I’m surrounded by trees. I see vegetables all around me, and happy, smiling, animals. I turn around. I’m at a desk. In a room with no windows. I’m writing. I’m all alone. I haven’t been outside for days, ah, the smell.

Every time I think about my long-term goal, and take a deep dive into the future, and I do that a lot, I see myself in different situations.

I always find myself doing something I’m passionate about and something I love. And it doesn’t really matter what I’m doing, because everything I’m doing has the same foundation. I’m focused, I love it, and everything is going in slow motion.

That’s my long-term goal.

I told you it was different.

When you wake up in the morning, what’s the very first thing you do? I’m going to tell you, but I want you to think about it first. Do you know? It’s actually part of my long-term goal. Is taking a shower the very first thing you do? Or do you drink a glass of water? Or maybe draw the curtains, or turn around and start cuddling with your husband, or your dog? Nah. You’re forgetting one important thing.

If you’re like me, you’re checking the time as the very first thing you do in the morning.

A Long-term goal can be vague

Every time I have read about a long-term goal, it’s been about something specific. It’s been about money. It’s been about carreer, and it’s been about health. It’s always been specific, to the amount of money she’s going to be earning every month, or how many push ups she’s going to be able to do.

I really don’t want to be that specific when it comes to my long-term goal.

Creating a ritual and becoming a robot

I have tried to be on a diet, and my long-term goal was to lose a specific amount of weight. I read books, articles, blog posts and more. I was inspired, and I created my own ritual. I sat in the same couch, thinking about my long-term goal. I didn’t use a crystal ball. The fingers on my left hand were touching the left side of my head. The fingers on my right hand were touching the right side of my head. I closed my eyes. I let my fingers play with my hair, massaging my scalp, while I could see what was going to happen to me in the future.

I drank a lot of water. I started to exercise. I ate less, and I ate only the right food, and the right amount of food, at the right times of the day. I used the ritual to become a robot. I learned that food shouldn’t be attached to emotions, and that it was for survival only. Or something like that. It worked and my long-term goal was accomplished.

No matter how good it feels, closing my eyes and massaging my scalp doesn’t help for anything, other than challenging speed. And since challenging speed is my long-term goal, well, massaging my scalp while my eyes are closed makes me happy, and I can actually see the future while doing it. No matter what the future is.

Do you have a long-term goal? Let’s discuss

43 responses to “Long-Term Goal – Seeing the Future While Massaging my Scalp”

  1. What is fragmentation says:

    I think you need to be specific when thinking of long term goal.Your mind set is for your goal you should know what it is to achieve it.

    • Jens says:

      I have many types of goals, but it doesn’t work for me when it comes to a long-term goal. I want it to be vague, and as long as it’s related to my passion, I don’t have any problems achieving it 🙂

      • Jack says:

        Pretty much same my side. Long-term planning is important, but being vague is usually better when we’re thinking about future that’s very far from now. As time passes by, we realise and learn more and more new things – having an idea of which world you want to conquer is important, but if you try to become too specific with long-term plans, you may start daydreaming more and working less in the present.. other than that too, life’s more interesting this way!

  2. Carolyn says:

    Hi Jens, I’m so glad I’m not the only one who doesn’t have specific goals. I never had a goal to write a blog or to be a freelance technology journalist (which is what I’m called now). These things just happened. Don’t you think that if your goals are too specific you won’t have room in your life for the other things that just seem to happen?

    There are some people who need specific goals in life and that works for them. But for me, every time I make a goal, life gets in the way. Did I mention I had no intention of moving to England? That just happened to. Kind of makes life exciting.

    I like your idea of just sitting quietly and giving yourself a scalp massage to contemplate life. You might just have something there. I will have to try that.

    Do you find that life happens to you too? That making goals just gets in the way of life?

    • Jens says:

      Hi Carolyn,

      That’s exactly what I was trying to say, if I have too specific goals, life gets in the way (and I almost never have any to-do lists anymore either, because life gets in the way of those too). And, if our long-term goals are all about doing what we’re passionate about doing and what makes us excited, then life will help us achieve just that. It’s all in the mindset.

      I’m usually very focused when I set out to achieve something, and I believe that if I’m that focused, I won’t see all the little things surrounding me and the opportunities that might make my life a lot more exciting.

      Life is so much more fun without specific goals 🙂

      • Carolyn says:

        I am so glad to find a kindred spirit in this. I’m really bad at making to do lists also. It’s not that I don’t need them, but if I make them I tend to ignore them.

        I’m glad we’re not the only ones, Jens! Thanks for this fantastic post!

        • Jens says:

          I used to have post-it notes all over the place with to do lists, and I had notebooks, and then apps, and calendars. I had to do lists everywhere, and I always ignored them. Now I just add projects, and things to do related to the projects and I do them when I feel like doing them 🙂

  3. Ruth - The Freelance Writing Blog says:

    I’m with Carolyn. I’m less focused on long term goals that are tangible, and much more focused on establishing a healthy and functional frame of mind in all things that I do. We only have so much control over our circumstances, but we have much control over our reactions to thoughts, feelings, life’s bumps in the road.

    And for the record…the first thing I do when I wake up is….(this is so unprofessional)…pee. Even before i check the time.

    • Jens says:

      Hi Ruth,

      Chocolate and peeing, I feel like I’m starting to get to know you 🙂

      You’re absolute right, I am also focused on establishing a healthy and functional frame of mind in all things I do, and reactions to thoughts, feelings and bumps in the road are more important than most people realize.

      How did you get started with freelance writing? Was it part of a long-term goal?

  4. John Falchetto says:

    I have several, for my health, my family, my business. They each help me stay focused and not get distracted with what doesn’t really matter 🙂

    • Jens says:

      Hi John,

      I’ve read about what you do during the week, and the way you work is awesome. I have so much to learn from you.

      About your long-term goals, do you have specific goals? And are you going to reach them at a specific time (5 or 10 years)?

  5. Eddie Gear says:

    Here is one good reason long term goals dont work. We tend to learn so much and change and so does our priorities and goals. In my openion a long term goal is just a waste of time. I rater focus on what I want to do in the short term. That way i can achieve more.

    As for my goal, its to set up StudioPress Store where I can sell my designs to bloggers at Cheap prices for those who cant afford to invest a lot in their site design.

    • Jens says:

      Hi Eddie,

      I’m also focusing on short term goals, and I have to-do lists, but I don’t have them on specific dates. For instance, I have five different to-do lists where based on projects. I have one for new blog posts for slymarketing. So, when I’m going to write a new blog post I always look at this list, but I don’t have the blog posts set up to be published on various dates. I always write and do whatever I feel like. The important thing is to get things done, not what I do at specific times and dates.

      Working on short term projects like this makes a lot of sense to me, and it’s so much more fun than hustling to achieve long term goals 🙂

  6. Adrienne says:

    Hi Jens,

    I also agree with Carolyn, I don’t have long-term goals and there is a reason for that. Early in my life I had things happen to me that changed my life as quickly as you snapping your fingers. This happened to me more than once so all those “long-term” goals were crushed. I had to start all over again so I decided at that moment that I would only concentrate on what was right in front of me and how I could accomplish a specific task.

    Over the course of the years I have heard from different personal development coaches that some say it’s detrimental to write down all your goals and some say it’s not. I think it’s up to that individual but I do write down what I want to accomplish in my life but I don’t put a time table to it. I’ve learned to live in the present moment and concentrate more on what’s happening in my life at this very moment. If that’s working toward my goal then that’s what I do. That’s what works best for me.

    Like you, we all need to do what’s best for us and it’s not always the same as everyone else. I appreciate you sharing that with us Jens. It’s good to know I’m not the only one who thinks this way.


    • Jens says:

      Hi Adrienne,

      What you’re saying is awesome, and it’s exactly what I feel. I have many different projects (like writing my novel), but I never put any time tables on them. I keep writing, and working hard, but never to finish things on a specific date.

      I feel so much more free when I can do what I want when I want. And to me, this is how I want to live 🙂

      And it’s so much easier to stay focus on what life has to offer if we’re not too occupied with reaching goals.

  7. Hi Jens,

    Interesting conversation about goal setting!

    I think most of us here would not go for long-term goals mainly because if they are not achieved we are the ones who suffer or take it hard on ourselves. However there are many who do set them and achieve them, though I wonder what price they must be paying for it, directly or indirectly.

    I think life is beautiful and should be enjoyed. We should take each day as it comes and live it to the fullest. Set small achievable goals and reward yourself for those small achievements, which would gradually turn to larger achievements. This is what works for me and I remain quite content and happy with it as well.

    Thanks for sharing 🙂

    • Jens says:

      Hi Harleena,

      That’s exactly what I’m thinking.

      I recently watched a video of a TED presentation where the man on stage said that we should never tell anybody about our goals, because when we do, we are less likely to achieve them. I believe there’s a big price to pay if you don’t reach your goals. Even if we are doing amazing work, and we should be really proud of ourselves, if we don’t reach our goals we will most likely not be that proud. And that’s not how life should be. We should be proud of everything we do, every little achievement 🙂

  8. Sonia says:

    Long term goal…I have many, but the one that is the most important to me is my families well-being. I think about the economy all the time and the current state we are in. It’s not to say that things won’t get better, but I try and focus on the changes being made in society and how it relates to my current status. I want to create a business model that I can rely on when things get tough, so I don’t have to start all over again. Does that make sense?

    If I lost my job tomorrow, I don’t want to go back and do what I didn’t like doing before I got here. My long term goal is to further expand my love for marketing and make it into a business that will sustain my family for years to come. Do I expect to be rich, NO, but if I can pay my bills and still live a relatively peaceful life, I am happy with that. My family is my life and without them I can’t breathe. This was a beautiful post and a thought provoker! Thank you!

    • Jens says:

      Hi Sonia,

      My family is what’s most important to me as well. I don’t have a specific goal, other than that they are happy, and that I can take care of them (both emotionally and economically etc.. ). I am also working on a business model, and I’m writing a novel, and I’m actually doing a lot of things, but I always do the things I love without having the specific goal.

      So, when I wake up in the morning, I actually don’t know what I’m going to do for work. I decide after I have eaten breakfast, it all depends on how I’m feeling and what I want to be doing. And that’s how I want it 🙂

      I believe that what you’re saying is awesome, and that you’re like me, and you’re not expecting to be rich, it’s all about living a peaceful life with your family and friends around you.

  9. Bill Dorman says:

    I get up early to go to the gym; the very first thing I do is disarm the house alarm. The wife is none too happy if I walk out the door and set it off.

    Now don’t get the wrong impression and we don’t live in a bad neighborhood; it’s just an extra level of comfort I suppose.

    You can write about love-hate because I have those words tattoo’d on my knuckles; you know, like a prison tat………..:).

    Long term goals; I really don’t have any. If I keep doing what I’m supposed to be doing then everything will take care of itself. Pretty simple, but very efficient and it gives me the freedom to pretty much do whatever I want to do.

    What do you think, should I be more specific in where I want to be in 5 or 10 years? I’ve been in my current job for 28+ years and don’t think I will be making too many changes. I’m ok if 10 years from now it kind of looks the same…….

    • Jens says:

      I was thinking that you had some prison tattoos on your knuckles 🙂

      But seriously, do you go to the gym early in the morning? I have thought about that, but I just can’t, I’m not sure if it’s my body or my mind that refuses, or it’s because of the weather in Norway. Right now it’s dark (pure black) outside, and it’s cold, and that’s what it’s like until almost 9 am, and when I get home from work it’s dark again. That’s life in Norway right now.

      I really like that you’ve been in the same job for 28+ years. I have been in mine for 10 years. So, I guess we must like what we do then. And that’s what’s important.

  10. Jeff says:

    I’m still young, so I can have long term goals. Most of them include the usual – start a career, maybe start a (profitable) business, get married, have a couple kids, etc.

    I’ve noticed that if I write things down and review them everyday, I tend to accomplish more of those goals.

    I think anyone can say, “I want to be a millionaire!”, but how are you going to do that? Do you want to be happy doing it? Making sub-goals of your major goals will help you eventually get where you want to get going.

    • Jens says:

      Hi Jeff,

      I have many short-term goals, and I have them on lists, and I review them every day. And this is a smart thing to do. But, I never have goals that I have to finish on specific dates or times, I add them like projects that I finish when I feel like it.

      But, in the long run, I don’t keep score of what I’m doing, as long as I’m doing something I love and I’m doing it every single day. So, when I wake up in the morning, I take a look at my list and I pick what I want to be working on. That’s it.

      Making sub-goals is a brilliant idea.

  11. Justin says:

    I liked this post Jens. I don’t set many particular goals these days. My main objective is to create a lifestyle that has an abundance of time and money to do things that I am feeling passionate about.

    First thing in the morning I make coffee and hop on my computer.

    • Jens says:

      Hi Justin,

      This is brilliant. “Creating a lifestyle that has an abundance of time and money that to do things that you’re feeling passionate about,” that’s what it’s all about. We don’t need a whole lot of money, but what we need is to keep working at something we’re passionate about, something that doesn’t feel like work.

      To me, passion is everything. If we just do something, whatever, in order to earn money, what’s the point ? I understand why people did it many years ago, but not anymore. Now we can do whatever we want to, we just need to be creative and keep doing what we love, and we’ll be successful at it, that’s my mantra 🙂

  12. Michael says:

    Long term goals sound scary but once you’re half-way there you become more motivated than you’ve ever been.
    When I started going to the gym I wasn’t very motivated, I felt like I’m doing it for nothing but once I saw my body transform in just 3 months
    I became more motivated than ever and it has still kept me going for nearly 3 years.
    I have already achieved my main goal and I’m happy that I made the decision to start working out.


    • Jens says:

      Hi Michael,

      That’s true. Long term goals are scary, and that’s mostly because they are huge goals, and sometimes very difficult to accomplish. But as you’re saying, once you’re half-way there, or when you break long term goals into sub-goals things will look brighter.

      I’m running, so I can truly relate to your working out example. When I started out I couldn’t run for more than 3 minutes, so I started running for 3 minutes, then I walked for 2 minutes, and I ran for another 3 minutes etc.. Now I’m running three times a week for more than 1 hour every time. It’s amazing how my body transformed in just a few months.

      • Michael says:

        True Jens, the hardest part is the beginning, after that things get easier and you learn new things that will make the job easier 🙂


  13. leigh says:

    My main objective is to create a lifestyle that has an abundance of time and money to do things that I am feeling passionate about.

    • Jens says:

      Hi Leigh,

      Sounds like your main objective is one I can relate to. What I had a very hard time to do is to find out what I’m actually passionate about. Have you discovered that?

  14. olatoun-graceny says:

    my longterm goal is to have keep loving my hubby and kids make a lot of friends all around the world,make alot of money online and establish my dream charity organisation…
    The first i do every morning is to glance at my son and smile*wink.

  15. Grant Brookes says:

    Jens! i enjoyed reading your post! Long term goals, it just struck me that i dont have one!!!

    I want to do few things in the future, but success and failures don’t count, but there is no specific target that i want to achieve this and that.. but doesn’t mean that i lack motivation or i am lazy!

    • Jens says:

      Hi Grant,

      That’s the thing, we can work hard, and get a lot of things done (and don’t lack motivation) without having a long term goal. As long as you’re doing something you’re passionate about, that’s all that matters.

      Thank you so much for the kind words.

  16. Jimmy says:

    Hi Jens,

    I like your unorthodox perspective to goals – to live in the moment and to forget about long term goals. It is really a unique way to look at life. Many of your readers seem to agree with you that planning long term is quite useless.

    I belong to the other school of thought though. I believe that goals – long, short or medium term goals – focuses our attention and drive our actions. You might think that you have a long term goal, but deep down I think everyone has. Don’t you see a picture of your children in the future?

    But what you are focusing on are really short term goals building a long term goal. That is key, whether you consider long term goals to be a hassle or not. That’s my definition of being in the moment and it works perfectly with long term goals. Everyday, what are you focusing and doing that is bringing you success in the long run. Forever long term goals in that sense.

    • Jens says:

      Hi Jimmy,

      I might have long term goals, but I don’t think about them, at least not intenionally. I focus on doing things I love every single day, and I’m motivated, and I’m working hard, but not towards a specific goal. Although, like you’re saying, there probably is a goal far ahead. But, I don’t put a time stamp on it, and since I don’t feel that I’m focusing on it, I don’t consider it a specific goal.

      I’m not sure if this makes sense at all, but I’m trying my best 🙂

      For instance, many people have specific goals, like earning $100,000 a year in five years. But first they need to make sub-goals, like earning $40,000 a year in 1 year, then $60,000 in three years etc.. My mind doesn’t work like that. I keep working hard doing things I love, without thinking about any outcome. I know that as long as I’m working hard doing what I love, the outcome will be remarkable 🙂

      • Jimmy says:

        Dear Jens,

        Thank you for your clarification and I respect your approach to this form of goal setting. You are the best judge to what works for you and what makes you happy and motivated. There is really no right and wrong to it. To each his own.


  17. Mouh says:

    As long as you’re doing something you love, you’ll achieve something you love and you’ll be a place you love. 🙂

  18. Diana Stroe says:

    I love to sing so I would love a career in music, I want to take singing classes and my long-term goal is to be on a stage and perform. My favourite singers are: Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald and Shakira. They’re the best in my opinion. Thanks for sharing!

  19. Lynn Sanders says:

    That’s definitely a different long time goal, but i wouldn’t preach the vague side of it too much. While it might work for you, the majority of people need a clear, 6 tons tank in front of them for a goal, else they’ll miss it wide.
    I do love the concept though.

  20. this is lame says:

    this is lame dude

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