“Your ability to set goals is the master skill of success. Goals unlock your positive mind and release ideas and energy for goal attainment. Without goals, you simply drift and flow on the currents of life. With goals, you fly like an arrow, straight and true to your target.” Brian Tracey
Goal setting statistics
Here’s some research on the effectiveness of goal setting: In 1953, Yale's graduating seniors were surveyed to determine how many of them had specific, written goals for their future. The answer: 3%. Twenty years later, researchers polled the surviving members of the Class of 1953 -- and found that the 3% with goals had accumulated more personal financial wealth than the other 97% of the class combined!
The moral of this story is: 1. Goals work. 2. Almost nobody uses them.
“That’s all very well”, I hear some of you say, “but I am still not convinced, goal setting is boring, and I have more important things to do, and it works for some but not me.” I understand, but I warn you this is where it all begins and you will miss the key to long term success with the other 97% if you skip over effective goal setting.
The approach to effective goal setting
Ok. Now I personally have done a lot of goal setting exercises before and based on my experience there are 2 general sides.
1. Those that tell you to be absolutely specific and follow processes like the SMART mnemonic (specific/measurable/action/realistic/time)
2. While others say be more general as specificity ruins your chance of success.
I believe good goal setting (like life) needs a balance between specifics and freedom. Trying to control every aspect of the process often complicates things. It can take the joy out of the dreaming and imagination. Goal setting is not about activating the rational mind, but it’s about the subconscious or higher self (whatever term you want to use for that mysterious force that guides us). Accessing that power is through joy, fun, excitement, and inspiration. If the goal setting task is laborious, lame, boring or difficult then forget about it.
3d pts Dream Achievement Process
So here was my challenge how could I make this section FUN, rewarding, challenging, engaging, inspiring, thought provoking, long lasting, and repeatable? OK GO WITH ME NOW, it may seem a little silly and childish but that’s where creation begins so let’s play pretend and let the imagination run wild – then you can return to the serious stuff again .
Imagine strolling along you favourite beach and tripping over a smooth weather beaten dull green bottle. You pick it up and see it’s closed by a cork, thinking a message may be inside you decide to pull off the cork and out comes a genie wearing some Nike gym clothes and drinking a bottle of water as she floats out.
She says: “I am the wellbeing genie, name your ultimate health and fitness dreams.”
“Wow that is a bit overwhelming!” you say. “I have a lot of health and fitness dreams.”
Then the genie brings you over to a mirror and says: “This is my magical mirror – it reflects back what your health and fitness dreams are. You may see yourself energized upon waking in your desired body, youthfully playing with family and friends or even climbing a mountain.”
What do you see?
Genies know that for dreams to come true you need to be passionate about them, so she digs a little deeper and asks: “WHY do you really want to achieve this?”
What will this outcome GET for you and allow you to DO?
The genie then says: “Ask the mirror vision of you to pick up the paper that’s sitting on the table next to you. It has the date you will achieve this. It may be general or specific.”
What date do you see on it?
The genie then asks you: “Open the door behind you to reveal what RESOURCES and SUPPORT (including people) will be there to help you now?
Now says the genie: “I know that there are things that have held you back in the past from achieving your dreams and they are still holding you back from realising success.” She then proceeds to hand you a red bag: “Place every fear and disappointment in this bag, then tie it together and throw the bag into the mirror.” As you do you see the bag disappearing slowly out of sight.
Then the genie says: “Imagine yourself again in this healthy dream body, feel your fingers tingle with energy and excitement as you live your life with this body.” The genie proceeds to lead you through the day as you experience it with your healthy body full of vitality and abundant energy.
Finally the genie says: “Your wish is my command!”
1. While you are in this state write it down. Words are an integral part of the thinking process. Words convey images, pictures, feelings, emotions to the mind. By clothing it in words you allow the thought to take form in body, shape, form, substance. Try writing it in the form that you already have it, for example: “I am so happy that I am…” It may feel strange and silly to start but it help to put you into the right state.
2. Get into this state as often as possible, including using techniques like visualization. Your subconscious mind doesn't know the difference between something that is real and something vividly imagined. It is a secret technique to high achievers especially in sports. Whatever picture (goal) you consistently think about will drive your actions to create that exact picture. When you continually see yourself in possession of your goal, your subconscious mind will move you into actions that align with the mental image you hold.
3. Believe. If you don't truly believe you can reach a goal, it will forever remain a pipe dream. In order to fully achieve anything, you must believe it is possible at a deep cellular level. For example if your goal is to achieve your ideal weight then buy the clothes now that you would wear when you are your ideal weight.
4. Have an attitude of gratitude. This will change you state from fear and disappointment to one of motivation. Be grateful for everything you have now. It may be the support of family and friends, or the ability to exercise. For an instant motivation shot please see this article and film… Strongest father in the world
Authors note: This exercise is based on the Law of Attraction – there is a lot of great books and information out there on this fundamental law. One resource I recommend is a movie called “The Secret.” Go to www.thesecret.tv to find out more.