Reaching your 2024 goals

Lessons from a Mushroom

Let’s talk about reaching your 2024 goals. I wrote about my planning strategy on the blog earlier this year, but I didn’t share my personal goal publicly. Maybe because it’s a little silly. But also because I wasn’t sure people would understand. Now, I think maybe it might help you in reaching your 2024 goals.

My intention for this year is to be more like a mushroom. To be a mushroom is to slow down, be present in the current conditions, and to use your energy when the time is right. Mushrooms are never in a rush, they save up resources, wait for ideal growing conditions, then fruit when the time is right.

As a business owner, I worried if I shared this goal people might think I was too whimsical or didn’t have a “real” plan. I thought the perception might be that I make decisions on a whim without really thinking through what it means for the future. But it’s just the opposite of that. I know what I want (to be more like a mushroom this year) and I’m open to the universe’s cues, even if that means tweaking my goal along the way—maybe I’ll lean more towards being a morel than a hen of the woods, or perhaps channel the spirit of lichen, which, despite not being a mushroom, grows in a similar mindful fashion. Okay, are you over the mushroom analogy yet?

I recently read Think Again by Adam Grant and was so excited. I thought, “finally!! Someone who gets how I think!!” Adam outlines the importance of continually re-thinking how and what you know, and being willing to change your mind based on new facts. In fact, he points out that the some of the most powerful leaders have been known to change their mind more frequently than others.

This book helped to shape the way I talk about the way I think and move. I’m not non-committal, it’s that I’m willing to re-think my decisions based on new information. I am willing to learn and grow along the way. I’m not rigid in my thinking of what my life or work has to be.

The point is I have a strategy, that strategy just isn’t traditional, and I know it’s hard for some people to understand that. So, let’s break down how it works in practice. I set an intention for the year, establish basic benchmarks, and then, as life unfolds and opportunities arise, I ask three questions: “Does saying yes align with my goal?” “Does my view of the goal need adjusting?” “What can I learn from this?” It’s that simple and each year I find using this helps me make more progress and stay more focused than any other strategy.

For example, my goal this year is to be more like a mushroom and I’ve set the following benchmarks:

  • Slowing down and being present.
  • Listening deeply to the experiences and knowledge of others
  • Building projects and spaces based on the needs of others
  • Spending time outdoors and with people who bring me joy
  • Basing my work on available resources, asking for help and avoiding forcing things that don’t fit.

So, if you see me changing my mind, shifting my work, or making new moves, it’s because I’m learning and growing. My flexibility makes my decisions robust, my work better, and my life more creative.

Here are my questions for you: how are you reaching your 2024 goals? Does this help? Are you doing something different where I can learn from you?

I know this is all a little silly, but so am I 🍄 ✨

-Kasey H.