Hocus, Pocus, it's all about focus. That's the real magic of goals!
'Once set, the final thing to do is to make our goals visible. Put our written down goals where we will see them everyday. Look at them often and surely success will follow, as day follows night.'
The above success principle has been praised by just about all those who have applied it. Those who do not apply it usually get left in the dust, goal-less. There are some who are able to bypass this principle and still enjoy great succcess, but they are few and far in between.
In my experience with goal setting, past and present, I find that in addition to writing them out, pictures of my goals and associated items, help me to visualize actually having them, just as if they are in a layaway catalogue, all I have to do is pay the price to pick them up. This allows me to think that it is just a matter of time until they arrive! This really helps to allay any negative vibes that may crop up during the adventure.
At the time, I was rarely successful at staying consistent and focusing steady on anything important. I mostly just played at life. I knew all the rules of success but was haphazard at applying them, no consistency. This does plague me from time to time.
That is until I got serious . . . 1987. That year I quit smoking, quit drinking, and quit being lazy! I dropped 60 lbs. in 3 months, and worked up to running 5 miles a day. I experienced the power of Focus! I wrote an article about how I made that happen. I called it, Set Your Mind To Win and you can read it at: http://www.realgoalgetter.com/articles/smith/set-your-mind.html . In it I explained some of what I did to achieve those goals. This article actually follows up on that one, with a little more detail, and in a different way.
That next year, 1988, I made a decision to take my wife to Hawaii. I remember it was a vacation trip though that I really wanted for my wife and I. It was her dream trip to Hawaii, she had never been there. So we planned two weeks in October that year. It all seems so long ago, actually it was. At the time of this writing it is 2004.
Back then, I didn't have any of the the resources that I needed to take this trip, and I didn't know how I was going to do it. I was flat broke. But I did know that I wanted it for my wife and I. This was a tremendous amount of cash for me to come up with in so short a time. For me this was nigh impossible! There were no past references in me to even think this was possible. I didn't even have a savings account at the time.
Being in Sales and Supervision at the time, one of the procedures to make it easy for people to buy was to break down the necessary actions, payments etc. to the ridiculously simple, so they would believe it was not only possible but absolutely doable! I brainstormed all the things we wanted to have and do on our trip, all that it would cost, and totalled it up. I would need at least $8,000.00 in order to make it happen. I needed to break this down into timelines.
I pushed the negative self talk aside every time it came up. (And it came up often, believe me) I came up with ideas I needed to act on and I started to break them down into 5 smaller actions, and then into 5 smaller actions until I came up with a ridulously simple thing, that I could believe I could do and that I could do right there and then, and just waded into them one at a time.
I booked the trip in May, without having all my ducks in a row, heh, heh. I booked the time off at work and having told all my colleagues what I had planned, I couldn't back out. Talk about a public commitment, and a commitment to my wife is not easily broken, so I pulled out all the stops to make this trip happen. I tightened my belt on a lot of things that I didn't need and also worked my tail off to earn extra income so I could save some for the trip. I lived and breathed that trip every day.
I surrounded myself in my car, house, and office, with post cards, pictures, magazine articles, travel books, videos, sun tan lotion, even a fake grass skirt that I picked up in a yard sale and hung around my bathroom mirror.
I made an audio recording and listened to my own voice on tape of how I was making things happen, and I visualized (imagined) how successful I was at taking each of the actions necessary. I set out my intention. (Positive Self Talk in my car) This was weird stuff, believe me I felt weird at the beginning.
I talked about it all the time. It served it's purpose though and kept my focus strong, and concentrated my power! I never let myself forget for a moment that I wanted this Hawaii trip badly, and that I was on the hook for this. I kept reminding myself in every way possible that this trip was important, I mean, almost life or death important.
Well, I made that trip happen just the way I wanted it, and my wife was ecstatic. One week on Oahu, and one week on Maui. We took 33 rolls of film in two weeks, a visual reminder of the fun and good times we had. My wife had her dream trip, and I had a real life reference that would change how I went after my goals forever.
Making this trip happen really made it clear to me that goal setting really works big time, as long as you keep your eye on the ball. Since then, I work on my goals regularly, always keeping them in mind. I have a dream collage of pictures framed on my wall, and I have a long list of 'wishes' that I have yet to take action on. I just have to pump up the volume from time to time.
I am not perfect by any stretch but I keep at it. After I met this challenge, I sure haven't got any excuse for not having or doing something.The best reward I got from that experience was the feeling that I could achieve basically anything providing I stoked my desire high enough, and managed my thoughts and focus.
When you have one gargantuan goal, that by going after it, you automatically achieve all of your others, this helps to keep your focus concentrated, and your energy does not get dissipated by going in a lot of different directions. Just like Napoleon Hill writes about how powerful a 'Magnificent Obsession' can be.
Please do not take this as 'bragging' as my intention is only to demonstrate that anyone can do, have, or be whatever they want as long as you pay the price asked. Who in their right mind would brag about a small amount like $8,000.00 anyway in this day and age?
Let's see some of the focus activities I used in doing this:
1. Write down my goal and review it frequently. Immerse myself in it.
2. Surround myself with associate items, pictures, smells, feels, and/or tastes.
3. Think as if it's on layaway, it's in the bank, and confidently pay the price.
4. Create future references by visualizing you have received them already.
5. Talk about them all the time, and record my own enthusiastic voice to listen to.
6. Control my focus by crowding out the negative, overwhelming it with positive.
7. Break down my actions to the ridiculously simple, be specific.
8. Commited to myself, my wife, and everyone I cared about. (built up importance)
9. Set my mind to 'win', there is no other option to consider.
10. Have faith that this will happen, use the peak to peek principle.
One focus to success. Build momentum in all things instead of distraction. It is all about focus. You can make this work for you too. The real question to ask yourself is this:
How can I take these 10 'focus' strategies, use them as a ckecklist of sorts, apply them to my most important goal, make them work for me, and enjoy the process?
Well, how can you? And will you? You Can Do It!
Go for it!
Copyright 2004 Al Smith, All Rights Reserved
Al Smith writes for and publishes The Realgoalgetter Ezine.
His articles deal mostly with goal setting, self improvement, motivation, and overall health and fitness. Stop by The Realgoalgetter Website and subscribe to The Realgoalgetter Ezine at http://www.realgoalgetter.com/ezines/index.html .
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