Commentary

April 5, 2013

Taking charge of your future

Who is in charge of where your life is headed? Is it you, someone else or no one? If “you” is not the answer, read on.

Setting goals is a lesson I learned from my parents early in life. I quickly found that I like having control of my future. At first the goals were small, like attaining a specific rank in Boy Scouts or saving money for a new bike. As I grew older the goals became more significant, for instance, attaining a specific rank in the U.S. Air Force or saving money for a new car.

Being successful in the Air Force requires shared responsibility. Your supervisor and commanders have a responsibility for your well-being. They make sure you have the required equipment to do the job, and help you develop your future. However, it is your responsibility to make sure you are doing your part. This includes passing your fitness test and completing professional or academic education coinciding with your rank. Setting goals can help you take responsibility for your life.

The process requires several steps to be successful. First, determine what it is you want to achieve. Ask yourself, “What do I want to do?”

Do I want to get an excellent on my fitness test? Complete my CCAF? Upgrade to the next level in my career field? Get promoted to the next rank? Any of these questions are a start in the right direction.

Next, figure out the steps that are necessary to reach your goal. This could be done alone or involve someone else, like a wingman or your supervisor.

Once you have a plan for your goal, start moving toward it by working hard and reviewing your progress along the way.

For long term goals, keep track of what you’ve accomplished regularly. Some goals can be reviewed once a year, but others need to be looked at more often. Big goals may be more easily accomplished if a series of short term goals are set and completed. Success is a great motivator.

Goals can be used in all aspects of your life contributing to you becoming a better person and Airman. The Comprehensive Airmen Fitness model taught in Resiliency Training builds on the physical, social, mental and spiritual pillars of life. Goal setting can help strengthen the various areas of your life or help you acquire new skills.

Whether professionally, financially, physically, spiritually or in my education, I use goals to help guide where I want to go. Don’t sit back and let life take you for a ride. I strongly encourage you to take time to establish some goals to help you take charge of your future. It helped me take charge of mine.

 

 




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