Goals. We all have them. Whether your goal is to hit a certain sales number to be able to pay off that over-priced and under-used college education or to lose 10 lbs to show up at your high school reunion to make your ex-boyfriend extra jealous, they are typically what drive many people to make the decisions they make each day. I’ve been working on this self-improvement journey for many years now and have had some decent success listening to the teachings of many people before me to ensure my success. One “small” thing that I used to do that I completely got away from for some reason, however, was recently re-introduced to me through a podcast (if you don’t listen to podcast, click on this link to know why you should; they are GAME CHANGERS), and it has made a TREMENDOUS difference in only a short amount of time. Therefore, like everything else I steal from others and claim as my own, I feel compelled to share with my readers so they can reap the benefits as well. This epiphany-like new practice in relation to goals is simply this: READ YOUR GOALS TWICE A DAY. I know it sounds so simple, but I bet few of you actually do it, if any at all. If you read your goals once when you wake up in the morning and once before you go to bed at night,the gods will be on your side to increase your chances of overall success. Why you say? I’m glad you asked…
I. It reminds you of your commitments to be successful
Often during the course of the day, weeks, months of our lives, we can easily get thrown off from what we may have committed to some time ago. As we become overwhelmed with the “busyness” of our day to day activities, that New Year’s resolution that you made two months ago is completely forgotten as you worry about finishing that project on time for your boss or see those new Yeezy’s on sale (I’m sure about 80% of you have NO idea what Yeezy’s are, so here you are for education purposes…your welcome). Therefore you have to be consistently reminded of your commitment to yourself to not allow distractions to keep you from adhering to your course. Just this act alone can be HUGE…I mean really HUUUUUGE (in my best Donald Trump voice) in keeping you focused. By doing this in the morning when you wake up, your thought process will go to what are you going to do THAT DAY that will get you closer to your goals. You should think about the type of person you need to be in order to achieve these goals and if you are prepared to be that person in your interactions on that day with others. At night, you should reflect on how well you were able to perform related to those goals and, if you missed anything, go to sleep thinking about how much better you are going to do the next day to make up for any lack of adherence to the needs of success. You subconscious will work on these thoughts as you sleep, and you’ll be amazed at how much renewed focus you’ll have when you wake up in the morning.
II. It gives you a chance to more consistently re-evaluate
At times, if we don’t consistently review our goals daily, we may be working towards something that we truly don’t believe in any more. By taking the time to do a quick morning inventory, we can get a sense of how excited the thought of achieving a goal makes us and then decide if it is something we should continue to strive for. When we re-read our goals, there should be a sense of excitement at the thought of achieving that milestone. It typically should re-invigorate us to attack the day with fervor and excitement about the activities that are going to get us there. If you don’t feel this sense of excitement at some point over a week or two of reading your goals, then it may be a good indication that these goals are not where your heart is anymore. This does happen from time to time, as our views on life change and owning that Maserati with 24’s (Is that still a thing?) just doesn’t seem as important as it may have two years ago. There’s nothing wrong with tweaking goals and making changes as your temperament and focus changes. By reading them daily, you’ll get a sense of if this is a feeling that is consistent with the new you and have a much better feel for what truly is important to you at your core.
III. It help prevent you from making decisions that go against them.
Perhaps the biggest reason to do this daily is that it gives us the extra focus and discipline needed to say NO to those things that will detract us from achieving our goals. Steve Jobs once said that focus isn’t based on what you say yes to but what you can say no to that isn’t related to your end goal. In life, we are daily faced with decisions that may seem small in light of our bigger goals in life (i.e. will you have that extra milk in your coffee; will you reread that email one more time before sending it; will you leave work early to go to a happy hour with your co-workers). All of these decisions can be very hard at the time when they present themselves, as we may not have a solid frame of reference to refer to as a decision-making aid. By reading our goals daily, our ability to use our daily renewed commitment to the achievement of our long term goals will greatly increase the chance that we will have the will power to say no to anything that detracts from our overall goal rather than aids it. If we only read our goals every three to six months, there is a very good chance that we would have made a lot of bad decisions that would go against our ability to achieve them. By doing it daily, we set ourselves up to have a renewed energy and focus on achievement (very similar to when you first make your new year’s resolutions at the beginning of the year) that will help us refuse anything that isn’t helping us get closer to what we just committed to this morning. It’s much harder to enjoy that piece of chocolate cake when you just told yourself you were going to lose 10lbs only four hours earlier…regardless of how fluffy and decadent it appears.
DGR – Daily Goal Reading (I love making everything an acronym if you couldn’t already tell); While it may seem to be a little tedious, the benefits of making it a part of your daily routine greatly outweigh the extra five minutes you’ll have spend doing it each day. While there is no guarantee that by doing so, you’ll achieve every goal that you commit to, you’ll put yourself in the minority of people IN THE WORLD who commit to focus on their goals each and every day…not a bad place to be if you consider that millionaires and billionaires are one of the world’s smallest minorities. Happy DGR’ing…you think that’ll catch on?