Soft-Set Goals for the Hard-Pressed Achiever

If the idea of sitting down to write out a structured plan of action that demands you perform x number of actions according to a timetable of deadlines sounds like Stress City for you, you’re not alone. Springing from an industrial-age, assembly-line mode of thought, traditional goal-setting doesn’t capture the organic flow of the way we actually live.

The reason why goal-setting programs persist in popularity is that they promise to help you find the time and means to achieve the things you want to achieve. But the truth is that, while they look good on paper, in real life few of us are geared to follow the rigid, mechanically structured paths they describe.

Sadly, what often happens is that because people can’t fit their lives into the rigors of the programs, they give up on the goals themselves. But it doesn’t have to be that way. The key is to entertain your goals in a more fluid, natural manner.

If you analyze goal-setting programs, you find the primary benefits they provide are threefold: 1) They lead you to define what you want to achieve; 2) They give you some means of keeping your goal in the forefront of your mind; and 3) They stimulate consistent action in the direction of your goal.

You can take advantage of these benefits in a way that fits your schedule and lifestyle with one little easily remembered technique. Begin by deciding what you want to achieve and then identifying as clearly as you can why you want it. Once you have done that, all you need to do is learn to ask yourself several times throughout your day, “What do I want? Why do I want it? What can I do right now?”

Repeat those three questions as a little chant to yourself and you will discover they hold a surprising power. Your mind cannot help but come up with answers; it’s just the way minds work.

Try repeating them as you do mundane tasks that don’t require any concentration, such as routine housework, shaving, walking, or driving. Because you have already answered the first two questions in the phrase—what you want and why you want it—your mind will simply remember your goal and motivation, strengthening your awareness of them. Then it will go on an expedition to come up with answers for the final question in the set and ideas about what you can do will begin flowing into your awareness.

As soon as you can, implement those ideas. Not only is action towards your desired outcome the whole point, but putting the ideas to work reinforces your subconscious to seek more responses for you. It will even take note of which ideas you choose to act on and increasingly generate ones that are in harmony with your purpose and style.

Instead of struggling to fit your life and dreams into a rigid, mechanized system, let this flexible, self-paced technique work for you. What is it you really want, after all, if not a workable way to move toward your dreams? Why? Because you deserve to live the life of your choosing! And how can you do that in a way that fits your personal set of circumstances?

You can do it by putting the soft-set technique into play in your life today. All it takes is asking three questions: What do I want? Why do I want it? What can I do right now?

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