When Jim Carey was a lad he used to dream about being a famous well paid actor. So in order to make him feel closer to his dream he took to writing himself million dollar cheques.
And before Donald Trump knew what business was, he stuck a picture of the Empire State Building on his bedroom wall.
Then the fast forward button was pressed for a couple of decades.
Guess what happened?
Jim Carey was still writing himself million dollar cheques. But by now he was able to cash them without the bank manager alerting the fraud squad.
And Mr Trump still had his picture of the Empire State Building. But it wasn’t pinned above his bed any more. It was hanging behind the owner’s chair of the aforementioned building looking down on the rest of New York.
And my point?
They knew how to set goals. They achieved spectacular results.
A coincidence? I think not!
Okay, they might not have been the most accurate or detailed goals, but they did the trick, and they highlight the point of this article rather well, which is: If you want to achieve anything meaningful with your life, it’s vital that you learn to set yourself goals.
Goals are the bridge between what you want and what you wanted. They give you direction and focus. They allow you to concentrate on the things that you want to bring into your life.
Without goals, people drift. They fall into low paid jobs, form unhappy relationships and they certainly don’t buy the world’s tallest building. Then they spend their lives wondering why other people appear to have it all.
Cue a life of wandering about in aimless circles without a detailed idea of where they’re going or how they’re going to get there. And how much happiness or satisfaction will that bring them?
So if you want to avoid these old age regrets, I want you to think of your life as a journey. And the things that you want to achieve are different locations that you want to visit during the course of your journey.
All we need now are some directions. Let’s face it, you wouldn’t begin a normal journey unless you knew where you were going, would you!
So why should life be any different?
After all, it’s the ultimate journey.
And goals are your detailed ordinance Survey map!
They will guide you where you want to go, as long as you keep referring to them.
Goals give you two things;
1. Long term vision (the world’s most expensive real estate, the million dollar payday), and 2. Short term motivation
They show you the quickest and easiest way to get from A to B to C to D etc. And when the going gets tough and you start to have second thoughts, they will give you the reason to keep going.
And that’s not all. They help you to;
1. Focus your attention on what you need to do and when
2. Organise your resources
3. Measure your progress
4. Boost your self confidence allowing you to achieve progressively larger and more demanding goals.
Goal setting will allow you to improve every area of your life. And, once you know the basics, it’s easy to harness the power of goal setting.
Rule One: Make them real
Whatever happens, use your goals to create something that will inspire and motivate you.
Do whatever you like as long as it gives you some tangible evidence of your goal. Write them down, use a photo, make yourself a prop, do a dummy run (e.g. write yourself a fake cheque) etc.
But whatever happens, don’t keep them in your head. Vague, unwritten goals don’t work. While they remain in your head, they’re all too easily forgotten or overlooked.
If Jim Carey hadn’t written himself that cheque, he might have forgotten to go to drama school and there would have been a film called “and Dumber”.
If Donald Trump hadn’t had that photo of a tall building, his dreams might have been overlooked and much of America’s real estate would have had a different name.
So get your goals out into the physical world, where they can’t be denied or forgotten. Give yourself a visible reminder of what you want to achieve.
Rule Two: Take Action
Making your goals real is the first step towards turning them into reality. But that only takes you 1% of the way to your final destination.
Okay, that might inspire you to join the local drama group or call your lawyer to incorporate a real estate company, but that’s as far as it goes.
Action accounts for 99% of your success.
Great ideas + No action = Nothing
Poor/Reasonable Ideas + Action = The Chance Of Success
So with that in mind, make a point of taking some positive action towards your goals each and every day.
Action builds commitment, it makes obstacles shrink and it gets you moving to your intended destination.