goal setting

How to Focus

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What’s most important for you to focus on today? That’s a question I ask to start off each coaching conversation I have with clients. It’s a question I ask of myself each morning. I have many interests, and since you’re hanging out with me and reading my stuff, I’m guessing there’s a good chance that you do too. As a matter of fact, many of you lament the fact that you have “too many interests.” Hogwash.

It’s great to have interests but here’s a key to not feeling overwhelmed or ineffective. Choose at least 1 thing to do each day that will have a great impact and do at least 1 thing each day that just makes your heart sing.

What do I mean by “impact?” Well that will be personal to you, but it could be an action that will bring you recognition, or in the long run, continue to increase your income. It could change your career. Maybe it’s something that will make a difference in your community or make an important change to your personal life.

Here’s a way to figure out what to focus on. If you don’t already have an action list (to do list) quickly write out of all the things you think you should or want to do. Then look at each item and ask: How will this change my career, my work, my life? Will this have an impact a week, a month, a year from now? Does this task further a long term goal of mine…how important is this goal?

This might take a bit of time to do at first but once you practice, you can do this in just a few minutes. Don’t like this method? Try this one.

List the goals you’d like to accomplish in the next year. Then each day, choose at least one action that moves you closer to your goals.

And don’t forget to do at least one thing just because you love it. Because if you do, you’ll find yourself connecting with your “real” self…and that real self will guide you to do the things that are truly the most important things for you to do in order to live YOUR life, YOUR way.

Go ahead and share a goal with us here in the comment section. There’s great power in writing goals down and sharing them a supportive community. Want even more support and structure? Join our 30 Days to Get It Done group beginning October 6th…watch here for details on how to register or drop me an email at ann@authenticlifeinstitute.com with “30 days” in the subject line and I’ll send you the details.

A Life Without Goals?

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I’m returning from a month long August vacation.  I had plenty of time to think, to breathe, to observe my choices.  The idea of goals came up again and again in my thoughts.  Here’s what I think today.

I have a love/hate relationship to goals.  With them, I have accomplished a great deal in this lifetime and many of those accomplishments gave me great pleasure on the journey to achieve them.  These achievements enriched my life and I hope, the lives of others.

The hate part of the relationship is that when I’m focused on goals,  I’ve lost my freedom to choose moment to moment what it is I’d most like to be doing.

I think that in order to mature and grown into the magnificent being that you are meant to be you need to learn to set goals.  I wished someone had taught me this earlier in life.  I really didn’t “get it” until I was 27 years old.

When you learn how to choose and achieve goals, you begin to trust yourself.  Once you’ve had lots of practice at it, although it sounds counter intuitive, I think the next step in your growth is to begin to let go of goals and to live more and more in the present.  But I don’t think you can skip the first step -setting and achieving goals takes you inside into your inner world and “inside” is a place where most of us, Americans anyway, spend very little time.

In order to choose a goal you have to look inside and see what is stirring.  What desire is wanting to be fulfilled?  What is it you need to do at this time to be more fully expressed?  Once you name it, you need to change the shape of your days to accommodate whatever actions are needed to make that goal a reality.   Those small changes move you in a new direction that is closer to what you need to live a full and expressed life and to share who you are with others.

I’m now at a point where I’m wanting to let go of having too many goals.  I don’t think I’ll ever give them up entirely though.  Matter of fact, I have a lot of excitement as I set new ones for the year ahead.

But I’m beginning to experiment.  I’m going to leave more space in my days to follow my whims and see where they lead me.

Did reading this bring up questions for you?  Ask here and I’ll respond.  Or share your thoughts on goals… I’d love to know what you think.

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