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Are you sticking to your goals? Do you know what they are?

I've engaged a little in the discussion on Matt Morollo's interview on Brent Ozar's blog. It made me go back and re-read the other candidates, and when re-reading Brian Moran's, I was struck with this comment:

"I’ve learned over the years that there are a lot of things that I can delegate to other people. I can’t delegate being a good husband or father. I prioritize those jobs on a daily basis even when I’m super busy with other professional responsibilities."

I'm reading (finally) The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. Covey's second point is to begin with the end in mind. Know what you want. Then use that to help you make your decisions. The example he used at the beginning of the discussion on this point is, "What will people say at your funeral?" It all goes back to goals. Have you thought about what it is you really want? Have you considered what is truly important to you? And are your current actions supporting those things?

I blogged on my Goal Keeping DBA blog about beginning seminary. It's a goal I've had for a long time and I'm finally beginning that journey. Steve Jones commented and gave me a very needed reminder that if I need to step back in other areas, like in the professional space, to make sure I do that if this is more important. It is. I have a great deal of respect for Steve, as most of us do. Time and time again he has offered invaluable advice, not only about the profession, but about life in general. I need to make sure what I do stays in the proper perspective. Brian's comment hit deep because it is something I believe, too. I can't delegate being a good husband and a proper father. I can't let my job or my ministry to take me away from those responsibilities.

And that gets to the point of this post. If you don't know what your long term goals are, and what their priorities are to you, you may reach the end of that long term period and realize you aren't happy with the road you chose. I don't want to be in that position. I've set goals. I want to reach them. Reminders like Steve's and Brian's help me stay on track. If you've not set goals for yourself, this isn't something to procrastinate on. Once you do, rack and stack them. And then let them help you choose your actions in your future decisions. You'll stand a better chance of looking back down the road you've traveled and being able to say, "Yes, I'm glad I'm where I ended up." Being a graduate of The Citadel, one of the things they reminded us is that we took the road less traveled. That comes from Robert Frost's poem, The Road Not Taken. I'll leave you with the last stanza (and yes, there are two interpretations... we choose to look at the positive one):

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I --
I took the one less travelled by,
and that has made all the difference

K. Brian Kelley - Databases, Infrastructure, and Security

IT Security, MySQL, Perl, SQL Server, and Windows technologies.


Posted by Brent Ozar on 15 October 2009

Agreed.  I liken it to race car driver training - one of the first things they beat into you (I hear) is to look way, way down the road, not just in front of the hood.  It's too late to avoid the stuff that's right in front of you.  You have to focus on where you're going to be so that you can get onto the right course to begin with and steer far enough away from the gravel.

Posted by Anonymous on 23 October 2009

This year I was really looking forward to going to the PASS Summit . It's worth every penny in the

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