Expand those Goals

Goal-setting can be a double-edged sword. On the one hand, it’s always good to be clear about what you want to create and where you want to go. On the other hand, some goals can be very limiting.

I’ll never forget Tony Robbins telling the story of a man in one of his workshops who wasn’t happy because he hadn’t yet reached his goal of $5 million net worth. He had only reached $4.5. On the one hand, he knew what he wanted to create; on the other he was limiting his enjoyment of what he had already accomplished by delaying the enjoyment of his abundance until he reached his final goal. A good goal for him might have been, “Create a net worth of $5 million and enjoy the heck out of getting there.”

We continually nod our heads when people say things like, “It’s the journey, not the destination,” or “You have to stop and smell the roses.” But how often does our behavior reinforce that? We rush around continually focused on what we haven’t accomplished instead of enjoying what we have.

The problem with doing that is the Law of Attraction which dictates that we get more of what we focus on. The more we treat the gap between where we are and where we want to be as a problem, the further away we are from reaching our goals. The gap is where all the fun is!

It’s why we so often experience a letdown when we actually achieve a goal. It was fun dreaming about it, planning how to achieve it and taking the steps to get there. Once we’ve arrived, it doesn’t feel nearly as great as we thought because the journey, not the destination, was the point.

We’re much more excited about the idea of the job we’re seeking. When we land the job, even if it’s all we thought it would be, we get used to it very quickly and begin to take it for granted.

We’re very excited about the idea of finding the love of our lives and yet, how quickly do we adjust to his/her presence?

Understanding that it’s the journey toward achieving the goal that is the point helps us to set those goals in a much more thoughtful way:

• To identify all the aspects of my dream job, enjoy the process of finding it and once I’m on the job to proactively keep it fresh and interesting.

• To run a marathon, be enthusiastic about the training, be aware of and enjoy my weekly progress and once the goal has been reached to fully appreciate what I’ve achieved and to continue to enjoy what it did for my overall health and vitality.

• To pay off my debt, enjoying the challenge, the budgeting and planning, and celebrating every milestone along the way. Once paid off, enjoying the feeling of freedom and doing everything in my power to stay debt-free

When we enjoy the progress toward achieving our goals, we reach those goals more quickly and we have fun as we do it. Because you are keeping a picture in your mind of what it will be like when you reach the goal, you are, in that moment, already there. And because your brain does not know the difference between pretend and reality, you are sending out signals that will draw to you circumstances that are a match to how you feel. That’s one of the reasons the achievement of a goal is anticlimactic—you’ve already, in your mind, arrived many times. The actual manifestation seems like old hat.

So take a look at your goals and determine whether you are limiting yourself. Do what you need to build into the goal the enjoyment of the journey.

Perhaps the best goal of all is the one I once heard my spiritual mentor Esther Hicks avow (and I’m paraphrasing here): It really doesn’t matter what goals I set because I’m busy achieving my ultimate goal of living happily ever after.

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