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The thing about goals is that living without them is a lot more fun, in the short run. It seems to me, though, that the people who get things done, who lead, who grow and who make an impact…those people have goals. ~ Seth Godin

Every second of the day, our minds are bombarded with thoughts, images, feelings, smells…you name it. At times, we can feel like a Dyson vacuum, collecting everything that is even remotely within our path. As humans, unlike machines, we are luckily gifted with the unique ability to rapidly sift through all of that stuff, and, unconsciously, we ignore most of it. This allows us to focus in ways that keep us grounded.

But even given this innate ability, we must remind ourselves of our purpose. Even though we don’t change direction because of every distraction that comes our way, they are abundant, and we can fall prey to their lure. This is why we need to pay credence to a single goal, almost memorializing what we want to achieve in each moment. The best way to do this is by writing your goal down in words and keeping it with you at all times.

Writing your goal down achieves three basic purposes:

  1. The act of transferring the goal from your mind to paper requires you to engage with the idea and refine it. This will add clarity to what you really want to achieve.
  2. By having the goal in your possession, it allows you to read the goal throughout the day. Eventually, this will help your mind focus on what you really deem important, rather than being subject to every sensory stimulation. Reading it once in the morning and once at night is the least that you must do.
  3. Writing the goal down is the very first physical act of manifesting what you really want to achieve. Goals require action. Writing is the first physical action that you take toward the reality of your future success in attaining the goal.

The Phases of Success Through Goal Setting

Avoid the desire to skip this critical step. Having your goal nestled comfortably in your mind is not enough. Our thoughts are too plentiful and your goal will eventually drown in the noise. Bring it to life, write it down.

The Three Minute Challenge

Use the next three minutes to take an action step toward your goals.

Phase 2: Bring It to Life

  1. Write your goal down in words. You can use your phone, a journal, or a 3×5 card. We prefer 3×5 cards with only one big goal written on it.
  2. Bring your goal with you wherever you go. If it’s in your phone, that’s a no-brainer, but if you use a journal, take the journal with you in your bag or briefcase. One reason that we like the 3X5 card is that you can keep it in your pocket.
  3. Refer to your goal several times throughout the day. The morning and evening are a minimum. The difference between a goal-setter and a goal-getter is how often she refers to her goal throughout the day. Read your goal as often as possible.

Technical Tip: Just like the physical aspects of writing your goal down, speaking it into existence is powerful as well. Whether you are talking to yourself or referring to your goal in a conversation with another person, say your goal aloud. When the universe listens to your goal, and you, in turn, hear yourself say it, it’s much more likely to become real.

Reach out and share your story with us.

Stay tuned for more challenges, reflection questions, leadership models, podcasts, and more by following theschoolhouse302.com. It’s our job to curate, synthesize, and communicate so that you can lead better and grow faster. In a world plagued by nothing but noise, we help you by getting to simple.

TheSchoolHouse302 is about getting to simple by maximizing effective research-based strategies that empower individuals to lead better and grow faster.

Joe & T.J.