Chapter 6Habit #3: Define Your Goals

The summer vacation was over, and Susie was going back to school. The night before, she tidied her school bag, selected her outfit, and even chose the hair band she wanted to wear the next day. The next morning, she woke up before the sun rose, talked with her mom over breakfast in a tone of hyper-excitement about the kids she was going to meet, and left home with a big smile on her face.

That was an encouraging start to her first day of junior high school, her mom thought. But she was shocked when her daughter came home crying. “What happened, Susie?” her mom asked, as she settled her down. “Did something bad happen? Did somebody bully you? Or was it your teacher?” Fortunately, it was none of those. Instead, Susie showed her mom the timetable and activity plan for that semester.

“There are so many subjects for me to take this year and so many activities. How am I going to manage, mom?” she sobbed. The perfectionist personality that she had inherited from her mother had put her under pressure. For the first time in many years, she displayed deep distress in her now teary eyes.

When her mom checked the timetable and activity plan, she immediately empathized with her daughter. There were indeed more subjects and extracurricular activities than Susie had ever taken before, but her mom knew she could handle it. All she needed to do was to set her priorities right, and make efficient use of her time. So Susie's mom gave her the best parental advice, ...

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