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Setting Goals In Life


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It is a widely held belief that setting realistic and tangible goals is one of the best ways to progress smoothly in life. The idea is you set goals, you diligently try to achieve those goals, and once you've achieved them you feel a sense of accomplishment, and then you set even more goals, repeating this whole process.

But how do you set goals when you don't desire to achieve anything or have any interest in the world? Goals come from wants and needs of the world; a desire to have a nice car, a desire to have a nice house, a desire to work at a particular job, a desire to have many friends, a desire to date a particular person, etc. I don't have anything in the world that I want or crave enough to motivate me to do something. If you told me you could give me anything in the world, a fancy car, a nice job, an entire company, or hell even a supermodel wife lol, it wouldn't matter to me because I'd still be in the same spot I'm in now. No motivation no drive. I'm still me. I don't care about having a nice house/car, there is no particular dream job that I want, I don't care that I don't have any friends. How can I move forward in life without a plan?

I guess the answer to that question is to work on myself right? But what does that mean exactly? Work on what? Work on being more in touch with my inner-self? I don't even know what that means or what it would entail. 

If I do create goals they will be forced and completely arbitrary, so if I achieve them I won't have any sense of accomplishment because I never really wanted it in the first place. Empty empty empty.

I know some of you are going to ask what I enjoy doing, and the answer to that is... not much. Most of my time (outside of my new part time job which I'm starting to hate) is spent watching youtube videos or playing video games. I have started a youtube channel as a hobby of mine but thats far from a passion. I enjoying making videos but thats far from a possible career. I tried to get into some computer programming so maybe I could go back to college and major in computer science, but every time I try to sit down and read the textbook it only holds my attention for half an hour and after a few days I give up on it. Back when I was in college I discovered I really liked philosophy. Now when I sit down and try to read it feels like my brain has short circuited and I can't process the information or I just get bored.

I just need some sort of gameplan for my life. Like one of those 5 year plans. My life is just in stasis right now.

I think part of what I'm describing is just simple anhedonia. I just don't feel that interested in things. It's hard to get excited about anything or anyone.

Sorry for my terrible terrible grammar. English is my only language and I have the vocabulary and sentence structure of a 6 year old. I'm only 22 years old but I feel like my brain is shutting down. Something must be wrong with me. I'm just awkward and stupid. Its really noticeable when I'm at work trying to open a box, fit something in a tight space, or just anything that involves some basic problem solving and motor skills. It's a little embarrassing sometimes. 

 

It took me 30 minutes to write this damn post and it not even well written. Some sentences I had to reread 5 times just to understand what I wrote! Jesus Christ... 

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I'm pretty sure writing and rewriting is pretty common. Don't beat yourself up, you seem educated and in no way remedial.

 

As for having no drive or passion, I am going to have to disagree just from the information you have given. You see, because I have almost the exact same lack of desire for most things in life. Certainly a lack of desire for what is typical (job, house, car. However, I do love video games like you do. They're an escape, they're a quest of attainable proportions. They are my desire when I am bored, finishing them or beating someone or something is my goal. I am going to have to go out on a hunch and assume these same things for you, otherwise, why would you play video games? Just because our desires and goals are not the typical wants in life, doesn't make them any less important or valid.

 

As for your brain short circuiting, if Philosophy is still something you underliningly desire, the issue of concentration might be obtainable through medication. Depression makes it hard to concentrate, and ADD can be an issue as well. Neither are your fault, and likely are out of your hands. I would speak to a doctor, it cannot hurt. That could be a significant help in "working on yourself". I know it's hard to obtain that sort of desire, but isn't it worth a push to try, if just once?

I know you said that you didn't want to fake it. To be honest, that is how I make it through most of my days. Faking it to my family. I fake it so much that I actually get happy and motivated once in a while. When that happens I try to make as many goals, and help myself as much as possible during that time, because you never know when it may strike again.

 

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17 minutes ago, Tid322 said:

I'm pretty sure writing and rewriting is pretty common. Don't beat yourself up, you seem educated and in no way remedial.

 

As for having no drive or passion, I am going to have to disagree just from the information you have given. You see, because I have almost the exact same lack of desire for most things in life. Certainly a lack of desire for what is typical (job, house, car. However, I do love video games like you do. They're an escape, they're a quest of attainable proportions. They are my desire when I am bored, finishing them or beating someone or something is my goal. I am going to have to go out on a hunch and assume these same things for you, otherwise, why would you play video games? Just because our desires and goals are not the typical wants in life, doesn't make them any less important or valid.

 

As for your brain short circuiting, if Philosophy is still something you underliningly desire, the issue of concentration might be obtainable through medication. Depression makes it hard to concentrate, and ADD can be an issue as well. Neither are your fault, and likely are out of your hands. I would speak to a doctor, it cannot hurt. That could be a significant help in "working on yourself". I know it's hard to obtain that sort of desire, but isn't it worth a push to try, if just once?

I know you said that you didn't want to fake it. To be honest, that is how I make it through most of my days. Faking it to my family. I fake it so much that I actually get happy and motivated once in a while. When that happens I try to make as many goals, and help myself as much as possible during that time, because you never know when it may strike again.

 

Its hard for me to tell the difference sometimes between something I'm generally enjoying or something I do just to past the time. I know it sounds weird but I feel theres a thin line between something moderately enjoyable and something thats just meh. Maybe I need to get better at reading my emotions. I think the more intrinsic question is what would qualify as enjoying something! Is it possible to actively seek out and prolong an activity without enjoying it? The activity could be sought after purely for the purpose of filling in time and not for personal enjoyment. It would serve to keep your mind busy and keep you away from boredom. Or would that qualify as enjoying the activity? For example, you just painted your bedroom and you're waiting for the paint to dry, so you take a long walk. You only choose to take a walk because it would be preferable to just watching the paint dry. If you don't necessarily like taking long walks, are you technically enjoying this activity? Some people clean compulsively when they get bored, can we say that they do in fact enjoy cleaning?

The real question is, is all busy work (any mundane activity that requires some brain power) technically enjoyable?

Sorry sorry to much technical mumbo jumbo

I do agree with you that its worth a try!

As far as the faking goes, I didn't mean it in terms of acting happy when you clearly aren't, or anything related to how I presented my mood to others. I was talking more generally about life decisions, take this job here, move to that city over there, etc. Pretending to be happy around others is one thing, but to construct your entire life under false pretenses( working a job you don't like, living in a city you don't like, dating someone everyone thinks you should date) is a whole other beast in of itself. That's the kind of thing people look back on when they're 50 and think they've wasted their entire life.

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It seems to me that you are isolating yourself.  Isolation is a big problem for people with depression.  We tend to be driven to isolation by our depression and depression then seems to make us more isolated.   

I think goal-setting is perhaps not a good idea for people with depression.  It tends to take them away from the now.  Yes, set goals to in the short term to deal with everyday things, but setting long-term gaols I would keep away from.

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5 hours ago, Mistral001 said:

It seems to me that you are isolating yourself.  Isolation is a big problem for people with depression.  We tend to be driven to isolation by our depression and depression then seems to make us more isolated.   

I think goal-setting is perhaps not a good idea for people with depression.  It tends to take them away from the now.  Yes, set goals to in the short term to deal with everyday things, but setting long-term gaols I would keep away from.

People always say this but my life experience tells me otherwise. Being around people doesn't make me feel better it makes me feel worse. People say it so much it really really annoys me. If being around people made me feel better then i would be around people.

I fail to even accomplish small goals.

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