We discussed a story in my English 10L class yesterday that really started me thinking about the mistakes that I see so many students make in regards to how they view their goals in life. In the story, a young boy wishes to win a game of hide-and-seek with a group of older kids so that he would be accepted as one of them. He knew that he was always regarded as being "lesser" by the older children because he was not able to compete and win the way they did. In order to accomplish his goal, he showed great determination and personal courage (two traits I admire greatly) by hiding in a extremely hot, uncomfortable shed in spite of his fear of the dark and anything that could be lurking nearby. The mistake this character made, however, is that he was so focused on his greater goal of "winning" that he never took the time to formulate a step-by-step plan of what he needed to do to win. He hid in the shed so long that the game ended, and his playmates moved on to other activities. In fact, he hid in there for so long that they completely forgot about him. It wasn't until he emerged from the shed that he realized he had missed his opportunity to win by being too far-sighted. I was happy to get the chance to have this discussion with my students because I know they all have great dreams for what life will be like when they are adults (nice house, nice car, fun vacations, etc.), but many of them fail to see all of the steps they need to take to get there.
I would like to hear what some of you have planned for yourself in the future and what steps do you see yourself needing to take to get there.