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Goals: The ability to set, sub-divide, and pursue goals is often what separates the great from the mediocre or even from the good. Good planning is not possible unless it is preceded by good goal setting. This week the Eyres post and speak about the subject of Goal Setting from a family and parenting perspective. Referencing a book they wrote many years ago, called simply Goals (co-authored with Paul H. Dunn), they discuss the charting of a life course and the setting of corresponding plans via the sailing analogy of knowing your destination and then setting and trimming the sails in a way that will get you there. Of course, it is the wind that propels the sailboat, and it is work that propels us toward our goals. “Relationship Goals” are even more important than “Achievement Goals.” At this time of year, as a new school year begins, there are special opportunities to help our children set academic, extracurricular, and character goals.

The Eyres wrote this book, their fourth, at a time when goals and the direction of their family and professional lives were in formative stages, and the book’s content has had a powerful impact on how they have chosen to live their lives personally as well as influencing the life-approach of countless readers over nearly four decades.

Sailing works particularly well as a metaphor for goal setting. In this book, written mainly at the Eyre’s sailing mecca of Bear Lake, every left-hand page is a principle about sailing and every corresponding right-hand page is about how the same principle can be applied to life and to the goals we set. For example, one left-hand page starts with “A well-handled sailboat is so versatile that it can sail into the wind as well as with it,” and the corresponding right-hand page begins with “Properly set goals are so powerful that they can propel a person in a direction that is contrary and even opposite to the prevailing directions of the world around him.”

The table of contents is arranged in ‘steps” rather than chapters. Step one: Understanding sailing and Understanding Goals, Step two: Knowing your ship and your sea and Knowing yourself and your world, Step three: Final destination and Lifetime Goals, Step four: Intermediate stops and Intermediate goals, Step five: Setting the sails and Setting the plans, Step six: Trimming the Sails and Adjusting, updating the goals, and Step seven: Wind and Work.

A free copy of this book will soon be available at

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