Over the last few weeks I have been deep in refreshing my mind with goal setting books and ideas. One exercise that I performed was the writing of my obituary. I am not dead yet, as far as I know. The purpose of the exercise was to explore our goals for our lives. Ask most people about their goals and you will usually receive very general answer like; ‘I want to be rich.’; ‘I want to be successful’; or ‘I want to be happy.’ These are fine dreams but not very definite. The obituary exercise was to explore what you want people to remember about you and your impact on the world. What legacy do you want to leave behind?
It is best to set a definite goal. And even more importantly, to write the goal down. Writing it down makes the goal real. It doesn’t matter how big or small the goal might be, you need to decide that you want to reach that goal. Brian Tracy, motivational speaker and writer, in his book Goals, says that he wrote a goal on paper to earn $1000 per month (at a time when that was a lot of money), and that launched him on the road to success. I wrote down my goal. It felt good. I read it over and over again.
Now the part that makes it work. You must believe that you can reach the goal – that the goal is already yours. You need to see yourself already attaining that goal. Then, through persistence and focus, work towards the goal each and every day. Decisions must be made with your goal in mind.
Having a goal gives you purpose and direction. It allows you to live with passion. Knowing where you want to go helps you identify opportunities. And don’t limit yourself with your goals. Ignore your tendency to underestimate yourself. Set the goal as if there were no limits, no obstacles, nothing out of reach. With persistence, obstacles can be overcome.
The obituary exercise was quite enjoyable. I just hope I won’t have to use it any time soon.