What Type A’s Always Miss When Setting New Year’s Goals

Filed in Stress & Anxiety by on December 27, 2013 1 Comment

Body, spirit, mind Balance


“Who in the world am I? Ah, that is the great puzzle.”

Lewis Carroll,
Alice in Wonderland

I visit my therapist just twice a year these days because I am feeling emotionally well. It’s good for me to keep in touch with her because I can never quite anticipate when the “wheels might come off,” and I descend into a bout of anxiety or depression, and she is a critical support mechanism if that happens. Also, she’s just very bright and lends some objectivity to my thinking, which I value.

So I saw her last week, armed with the goals I had developed for the upcoming year. I was proud of myself—as a good, card-carrying Type A, I was both well prepared and enthusiastic to talk about my goals and objectives!

After relaying them to her, to my surprise and disappointment, she didn’t seem overly impressed. This made me curious: what had I missed?

“Tim, have you considered setting any introspective goals?”

Damn, I can be such an idiot! Of all people, I should know better, since half of my recent book deals with introspection. (For those of you who have not read my book, first of all, shame on you, and second, introspection is the process of examining one’s own thoughts and feelings.)

Oh well, we Type A’s never seem to learn, or at the very least, we need to be constantly reminded: it’s okay, and in fact good, to focus on yourself every now and then. Self-examination, self-discovery, and self-healing—these are worthwhile things.

I know all of you reading this are extremely busy, and spending time in the new year on introspective activities might seem unrealistic, or worse, a huge waste of time. It is not, and if you can eke out even a just few minutes a week for some quiet time, you will be rewarded. It might just give you the added perspective and energy you need to face the future with more tranquility and optimism, which is priceless.

About the Author ()

TIM MCINTYRE retired in 2004 from his position as president of Applied Systems after facilitating a successful sale of the company. At only forty-six years old, he made the unusual decision to fully retire to pursue other interests and simply enjoy free time. As a hard-driving Type A personality, this turned out to be a significant challenge for the Notre Dame and University of Chicago-educated MBA, CPA, and Certified Cash Manager.

Comments (1)

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  1. Brian McMerty says:

    Tim, sound advice, as always. I treat introspection just as I treat stretching. I know I should do both and I will feel better by doing so, but I don’t seem to make them a priority very often. Thanks for the reminder. I now have introspection (and stretching) on my calendar!

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