Goals – The Fuel for Doing Things

Since this entire blog is dedicated to showing you all how I “do things,” I figured it would make sense and go ahead and put this one out there. Like everything in life, if you’ll put a primary process behind what you’re attempting, run through it, review what worked and what didn’t, and then improve it for next time, it gets simpler each time. A quote by Larry Elder that I love says it best: ” A dream without a goal is a wish. A Goal without a Plan is just a dream…” If you want to actually accomplish anything, you’ve got to create a goal and write it down.

ASIDE- Have you read “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People?” If not, you need to order it HERE on Amazon right now! I love audible books, but you should purchase a hard copy so you can take notes, scribble or draw, whatever you do in books. And so you will have a reference to come back to. This book is a MUST for anyone attempting to get better at anything!

The first thing I ALWAYS start with is “What’s the goal?” Once you have this figured out, you can then begin to put together all of the necessary steps to take to accomplish the goal. Each thing you attempt to do in life will have different actions, but there is an essential framework that I’ll list below that you can fill in depending on what you’re trying to accomplish. Goals are the catapult to success in anything in life.

Using the steps below, I decided, along with my good buddy John Rahiya that we’d climb a mountain…Yep. We climbed Mt. Rainier within 3 months of deciding and it was an incredibly humbling experience!

Step 1: What’s the Goal? WRITE IT DOWN! Numerous studies show writing your goal down (and sharing it with others) forces your subconscious to autonomously recognize different things in everyday life that will help you achieve your goal. Your brain receives millions of inputs a day, “and you remember some and forget most of them. The things you remember will be more geared towards the goals you have set for yourself.

Warning- every goal is not created equally. What do I mean? Your goals need to have certain qualities to ensure you accomplish them. They need to be S.M.A.R.T.- remember this? Sure you do. Say your goal is to improve your running and get in better shape. A good example would be to “Run 10K in 60 minutes in 60 days from now.”

  • Specific- Run a 10K in 60 minutes is specific. Run more than I do now is not.
  • Measurable- Run a 10K in 60 minutes is measurable. Run further than I do now is not.
  • Attainable- Run a 10K in 60 minutes is attainable. Run 5 miles in 15 minutes is not achievable.
  • Relevant- Run 10K in 60 minutes is a great way to get in better shape. Getting in better shape will help every other aspect of your life.
  • Time-Bound – Run a 10K in 60 minutes in 60 days gives you a deadline. This causes action. Everything else can be perfect, but if you don’t have a deadline, you may never start!

Step 2: What do I need to accomplish the goal? Usually, when starting something new, you need to acquire assets to achieve it. This can be new shoes if you want to begin running. You may need information if you’re wondering how to write a blog (by yours truly). It can be a “Karate Suit” (what I thought a gi was called when starting BJJ) to “get your roll on.” The idea here is to arm yourself with as many assets possible to be successful.

Following along the goal of “Run a 10K in 60 minutes within 60 days, you’re going to want to make sure you have a good pair of running shoes (I love these ON Running shoes), running shorts and a shirt that doesn’t chafe you. I’d also advise you to make sure you’re running correctly (I was NOT running correctly). HOW TO RUN CORRECTLY. I’d encourage you also to make sure you are supplementing yourself with proper nutrition to give you the energy for training, so you don’t die. Probably too much info here. And lastly, I’d look at a training regimen (HERE, of course) or something to help you attain your goals. The idea here behind all of this is RELY ON INFO FROM PEOPLE WHO’VE DONE IT BEFORE YOU! All of these resources I found from the 1st page of a google search.

Step 3: DO IT! This is the step that always seems to trip people up. It’s easy to make goals and dreams and make grandiose plans when you’re sitting on your couch all comfortably watching a cooking show on the food network (ok, that’s me). Your mind is actually lulled into a false sense of excitement and confidence when your body is comfortable. It’s a COMPLETELY different experience when it comes time for run number 3 (for me, the third time of doing something new is the hardest) and it’s 36 degrees outside, raining and your whole body hurts. THAT’S WHEN IT’S TIME TO GO!

This is where mental toughness and discipline come in really handy. Having the self-discipline is another major component to completing any goal. I have been doing BJJ now for over two years and I am still sore, aching, hurting, bruised, etc. before any class after Monday, but I still go. I won’t sit here and act like I’m perfect. I’ve not gone to a class I signed up for, quit early, given up, etc. more times than I can count, but I’ve also made the class, went the distance and fought to the end more often than that. And that’s what matters.

Step 4: What did I learn? The best part of having an experience is what you gain from it. Successes and failure teach you a massive amount about yourself and your progress. Generally, you learn more from the failures, but I would encourage you to always assess yourself – how do you feel physically and mentally – after each step of the way. This is where daily journaling comes in very handy. It allows you to see how you felt, what you though, what your time/pace was, etc. on every run, lifting session, or developmental phase. See what works for you and what doesn’t. And when you attack it the next day, work on your weaknesses and rely on your strengths.

Step 5: What’s the goal? Yep, start over again. New Goal: I want to run a half marathon in under 2 hours within 90 days. BTW, here’s your training guide: https://www.halhigdon.com/training-programs/half-marathon-training/novice-2-half-marathon/

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