An Upward Trajectory: Setting Goals and Finding Peace

I think I’m settled in on the Oregon South Coast – finally had time to unpack my bags and live that relaxing way of life that this region is known for!


Throughout this relaxation, I’ve been able to focus on my goals of the summer. One of my favorite aspects about Oregon Sea Grant is that they’re interested in our development, not just professionally, but personally as well. One way that they have encouraged us to make the most of our time and experiences here is by setting S.M.A.R.T. goals, standing for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time-bound.


I love goals. I make a goals/to-do list just about every day, but I had never heard of SMART goals before. I think they’re a great way to reach your end goal by focusing on bite-sized, manageable tasks every day. I also think that the best way to reach your goals is by shouting them to the world, and telling anyone who will listen. Even if they’re not too interested, talking about them is an easy way to keep you accountable to yourself. And so, here is my favorite personal goal that I made, and here is me shouting it to the world: “Determine how to focus my mind and energy to be my most peaceful, healthy, and productive self.” This is basically my way of saying “determine what makes me happy (including what attempts to take away my happiness) and brings me peace”.


One way that I’m doing this is by taking an hour a day to do something that I enjoy, be it drinking coffee and listening to music, sitting outside, walking on the beach, running, yoga, or playing golf. I’ve been finding the activities that I enjoy the most, and when it comes time for researching for my senior project or studying for the GRE, I’ve noticed that I’m more relaxed and that those activities are more enjoyable as well. I’ve also been finding happiness in unexpected places, like the fresh morning air on my bike rides to work, or having all of my laundry done and my bed made. Maybe this is what growing up feels like?


Never thought that my internship experience would include finding myself giddy over clean dishes, but I’m really glad that I’ve been able to take the time for personal growth and reflection. I think that these realizations will be extremely beneficial for my senior year, graduate school, career, and personal life moving forward. I definitely see an upward trajectory, and I’m grateful for the South Coast for giving me this peace of mind.


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2 thoughts on “An Upward Trajectory: Setting Goals and Finding Peace

  1. No wonder so many people retire to the south coast of Oregon!! All that relaxation and rejuvenation must be good for the spirit. I wonder if you can link these thoughts to your study of so. coast tourism?? I applaud your goal-setting, and hope you can keep it up as life gets busier and throws more things your way. Coffee is always the answer :-)

  2. What a beautiful post! Just reading this and seeing those photos made me feel more serene. I’m glad you’re appreciating the SMART goals idea! I agree that telling people about your goals is a great way to hold yourself accountable, which is especially important when you are on such a limited time frame.

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