One of the greatest feelings I had was achieving a goal I had once thought was unattainable. Looking back to grade 9 at Grand River Collegiate Institute in Kitchener, I was a sporty, wide-eyed, shy kid who dreamed of one day winning an OFSAA medal. Back then, OFSAA was every kids’ dream in high school sport. Four years later, as I left Grand River Collegiate Institute for higher education, I was a four-time OFSAA medalist in track and field. To this day, I cannot contain my emotions when reliving the first medal win, on the final homestretch of the OFSAA 1500m at Sandwich Secondary School in Windsor in 2005.

Part of the reason thoughts of this achievement are so vividly etched into my memory are due to how insurmountable the idea was that I could become great enough to achieve a medal in my high school career. It truly was a dream come true, but how did this accomplishment come to fruition?

Vision

The vision is the driving force; the vision is the dream. As an athlete, what do you want to accomplish? In my case, the dream was achieving an OFSAA medal during high school. Aim the bar high, and don’t be afraid to dream.

Goal Setting

What are you going to achieve to lead you to successfully accomplishing your vision? An example of a goal I set for myself was to qualify for the OFSAA championships; giving myself a chance to compete for the medal. Goals should be challenging, but realistic.

Planning 

Plan the necessary steps. There are many different steps along the way to successfully achieve a goal. Back in high school the goals that I set for myself were to spend at least one hour a day running, or performing a related activity which would aid the development of my main goal. As my athletic ability or fitness increased, so did my goals.

A wider view of achieving goals is that it does not just apply to athletics. The concept of goal setting and working hard through the ups and downs of the process to achieving a goal can be applied to the classroom as well. Perhaps you want to achieve a high mark on an exam, specific grade in a course, or GPA. Creating a vision, setting a goal, and planning how to get there should help you successfully achieve your vision. If you are having trouble achieving your original goal, try breaking it up into much smaller goals. This will help you to progress on the original goal and make it more manageable. Achieving goals will create a positive outlook for you and increase your confidence. This will encourage you to keep on progressing and, ultimately, succeeding.

I will share more, in my next blog post, about my athletic-academic journey and my decision to choose the path that I did as I continue my series – An Athletically Inspired Educational Journey.

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