What it is, is that most of my twenties have been learning about the necessity of "going with the flow." Life happens, guys. It's good to be surprised. It's good to be flexible. It is essential to survival to give into the rhythms of life and your surroundings and to find yourself in it rather than above it, or (worse yet) behind it trying to force it all somewhere.
As an all or nothing sort of girl, there have been times in this decade where I've tripped and fallen into some pity party holes. Things don't go my way and so I resolve to surrender fully unto life, which is the fancy way of saying I decide to float aimlessly. It's the dangerous side of flexibility--bending over backwards and, generally, away from what we always wanted.
Dreams are important. They exist in our heart for a reason, and it's good to remember that they were divinely granted us. They're our secret or not-so-secret reasons for living, for getting out of bed in the morning. Dreams are inherently human and worth pursuing. So in the midst of learning to let life just come at me, I had to train myself to not lose hold of goals in the onslaught.
Perhaps the important part for me has been the paring down of goals. As life happened and my attention and energies were divided, it became essential to pick and choose what I pursued. It was frustrating, at first--the realization that you just can't do everything. But then suddenly, it was freeing. My soul finally felt invested in what I had decided was most important to me. I wasn't flitting back and forth from interest to obligation; rather I was pouring myself into the things that I chose.
Now, when life happens, I let it. And since I've let go of the everything I was holding on to, it's easy to keep a tight grip on those one or two things I've decided make me most me. And it makes the steps more clear. "I'm here. I only want to accomplish this. With what I've been handed, this seems like the most logical way."
The good news is, goals can be just as fluid as we should learn to be with life. I've been pleasantly surprised to feel like I've gotten somewhere with something that is maybe totally different from the place I pictured, but it's success all the same. The point for goals is direction and focus, elements that come from knowing ourselves and from making decisions to become something rather than everything.