When contemplating what we want to achieve, let’s agree to stay away from wishful thinking goal setting. Lose 10 pounds in two weeks without changing a thing… Get the promotion without honing new skills… Hope and wish for love or for your relationship to magically improve without making any plans on how to get there…
Spoiler alert! These goals are not likely to come into fruition. You are going about it all wrong.
You see, you are not expected to be perfect or all-knowing, or always getting it right. Rather what is expected from you—and what you should expect from yourself—is your ability to recognize when you need a new skill to get to the next level of what you want. Here are two simple truths that I can say of you before we have ever even met:
- What you already know got you here. Right here, right now.
- If you want to get somewhere else, you must do something different.
So, instead of embarking on the same goal setting journey only to be disappointed, I ask you to humor me and play along for the next few minutes. (It takes only two minutes. YES, you have the time.)
Take just 30 seconds to close your eyes and ask yourself, “What do I want?” Without any further thought, judgment, or censorship, write down what comes to mind. One word or a novel. Who cares, write it all down.
Then take another 30 seconds and ask yourself, “Where am I?” Consider feeling stuck, disillusioned, frustrated, or on track. Again without any judgment, write it down.
Now let’s connect the dots. The second scenario tells you where you are, the first where you want to go. Really, all that is left is to connect the dots and uncover the path that will get you there.
But wait. Here is the key to successful goal setting. Do you have the skills, the knowledge, the expertise, the degree, or whatever else is needed to get from here to there, from 1 to 2?
Some of us (most of us) are great at the self-assessment part of change, but need help with follow-through. Luckily, you have a range of options! You could take a courses, hire a professional consultant or coach, or enlist the support of a group or personal mentor.
My point is this: There is no reason to fail with goal setting ever again; you just need to plan reaching them a little better. When you venture down into the subway system, you first look at the map. When you learn a language, you buy a book or immerse yourself in the language by traveling to where it is spoken. It’s a no-brainer to send our children to school to learn how to do new things. As adults, why on earth do we believe we can do it all on our own? Or without learning new skills?
Please, release your desire to do everything by yourself! Get on the road to greater success and happiness by asking who the right person is to help you get there.
Most things are ridiculously simple when you really think about it. If you can’t do it on your own, hire someone to help you. If you can’t learn it alone, hire a teacher, coach, or mentor. If you can’t get the results, find a trainer or consultant.
Let’s revisit our goals and determine what we need to have in order to achieve them. Then do that accomplished first. The results will surprise you.
Here is to an excellent 2016 ahead for all of us! I would sincerely enjoy and appreciate if you share your goal setting secrets and successes with me and all the readers here.