In the lightest sense, a goal is simply something we want to achieve, yes? A desired outcome. However, often, when we "set ourselves a goal", after our initial burst of enthusiasm, we may just be "treading water", or "going through the motions".
At these times, often life gets in the way and our heart may no longer be in the goal that we initially thought we wanted to achieve. To state a commitment is easy, while taking the required action that ensures the goal is actually met, is something else entirely. To fully achieve any goal, I believe we need three ingredients:
- The sincere verbal promise to ourselves, and ...
- Heart and soul commitment, and ...
- Of course, completion of the work required.
Key tip: to stand the best chance of success, consider setting a goal that is significantly bigger than you think you can achieve. Why: most people are far more capable than they initially believe or give themselves credit for. In addition, providing we stay the course, we may find that we can often simply "grow" into a bigger goal.
Two kinds of "big" goal are especially worthwhile:
- A goal that frightens us — at least a little.
- A goal that excites us, a lot.
Such goals have yin and yang: each goal also has a little of the other. A scary goal can also be exciting. An exiting goal can present scary scenarios.
Of course, you can have goals that both frighten and excite you and that's OK. Then you have twice the power — for together, those two key drivers above can provide the engine you need to really reach your goals.
Consider the following thoughts and ideas about achieving goals:
- As air breathing creatures, if we find ourselves under water for more than a few seconds, most of us need no encouragement that our most urgent goal is to get above the surface of the water as fast as possible. Here, our driving force is priority combined with the desire and instinct to survive.
- Key tip: sometimes, we'll get to our goal sooner when we "jump in the deep end". Why? When we really just have to achieve our goal, when there is no safety net waiting to catch us if we fail, the fear we can feel deeply can create the most amazing motivation, focus and energy we need. We can be scared, angry, ye stimulated, feel more alive, and still win the day.
- A goal that frightens us forces us to step outside of our comfort zone to something bigger than we at first imagine.
- Often, when we're outside of our comfort zone, we can be in unfamiliar territory — a path that can lead to growth. Any significant goal is met through undergoing uncommon growth.
- Key tip: to achieve worthwhile goals, our comfort zone is in one sense, the enemy. Through our comfort zone, we hold ourselves back, whereas to achieve a goal, we must push ourselves forward to learn and grow.
- Everyone who has ever achieved anything worthwhile — known or unknown — takes the decision to voluntarily step outside of their comfort zone. Maybe only for a short while at first — nothing wrong with that.
- Later, with regular practice, we can step out and step back in as easily as we can open and close a door.
- When we embrace the self-discipline of regular practice required for any activity connected with our "big" goals, we set ourselves on the road the accomplishment.
- Foster passion for your goal. Why? The level of passion you generate for your topic is the fuel that takes you to your goal.
- Truly, if you we shoot for the stars, yet reach the moon instead, what a result! Aim for a high goal sets us free, reduces our limitations and increases our potential.
In goal-setting, naturally, we think much about how to achieve our goals. However often, the real enduring value isn't the goals we may reach or not reach, but what we go through and experience on our journey of astonishing growth.
Yes, the journey itself can be the ultimate goal.