Stop Setting Goals Until You Do This… 

 May 23, 2019

By  Stephen Hnilica

This is an excerpt from something I’m calling my “Action Journal”. It’s something I’ve been creating for myself and a few friends. It’s the process I’ve used for basically every major project or life change… Well, any that I’ve been successful with.

If I don’t go through this process, I lose motivation quickly, procrastinate, spin my wheels, and then projects eventually stagnate and fail or changes don’t stick.

This is the first section called “Define Your Starting Point”.

“Before we can change the world, we must first change ourselves” – Gandhi inspired, probably Biggie Smalls

When I began on my journey to create the change I wanted to see in the world and in my life, I was always goal focused. I looked at the outcomes I wanted. “What’s my goal?” is only useful if you already know how to determine if goals are worth pursuing.

When we begin with the goal in mind, we make assumptions about ourselves, and about the world, or worse, we use the assumptions others have made for us.

Things like “money is the most important thing”, or “I hate hard work”. This leads us to chasing dreams that aren’t really our own.

In life, where we end up is the result of small, incremental changes to our journey. Change is the only constant in our lives. We can either direct that change, or we can let the world direct it for us.

To begin to direct it, we must first know where we are, how fast we are moving, and in what direction.

If we don’t know where we’re starting, or how fast we are already traveling, and where we are already headed, we could set a goal, then miss it by a mile.

I didn’t truly find my path to fulfillment and lasting change until I stopped asking “What do I want to accomplish?” as my first question.

When ever I begin with the questions of “Who do I want to be? What qualities do I wish to embody? Who do I want in my life?”, it’s easy to decide what goals to pursue and how to do so.

These qualities will inform your journey. They will inform who you seek to come with you on your journey. They will inform what destinations you decide to journey to.

If you wish to embody peace, your goal will likely not to build a nightclub. As you progress and grow as a person, the qualities you’re focused on developing may change, and that’s all right. Change is the only constant in our lives.

So, let’s start with “What qualities do you wish to embody or develop in the next 3 months?”

Would love your feedback and to know your answers 🙂

Stephen Hnilica

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