Reshaping your life begins with a goal.
Sometimes we are so stuck in our life habits that it is difficult to figure out what our goals are for our lives. This guide will help lead you through a thought process for identifying current goals.
Then come back to this at least once a year, preferably more often, to change and adjust them as your life adapts.
Also? This should be fun! Turn on some music, pull in a partner or pet, and most importantly view this as an enjoyable next step towards living your best life!
Step 1: Dream Up
Answer the following questions, it helps to write them down so you can reference them later
- What are your favorite things to do right now?
- What do you see others doing and wish you had the time/energy/money/whatever to try?
- What is the most exciting and fulfilling thing you can think of doing in this life?
Now take each of your answers and answer the following:
- What would make this even more epic?
- Would combining any of them make it even more unbelievable?
- How many people would you want to do it with you? Does more or less people sound more fun?
One of my favorite things to do is play volleyball. I love the team aspect of it, the way everyone knows their role but also can step in to cover for everyone else. I dream of being able to go play 1-2 times a week. Making that more epic to me would be getting to play on an island (Hawaii? Thailand? Madeira?) in perfect weather with a group of people I enjoy, for a few weeks, focused only on being in the moment and enjoying every second.
Step 2: Drill Down
Pick the activities that made you smile the biggest for now. You can come back and do this step with the others later.
Now ask yourself: Why does this seem hard or unachievable? List all the reasons you can think of. It’s very important to write these down. The more detail the better.
Back to our example:
For me this is hard because (1) I haven’t played volleyball in a few years thanks to a combination of Mom life and COVID, (2) Therefore I don’t have a group of friends that I play with right now, (3) I don’t have a budget or free time to go on a trip like that.
Step 3: Start Small
For each of the reasons in Step 2, think of 1 small thing you can do to make that a bit easier.
Here are a few ideas:
- Take one deep breath to think clearer
- Search for a related word on the internet
- Ask for advice (a partner, a pet, a stranger)
- Write down all words/phrases related to it
- Do one squat
- Transfer $1 to savings
- Each one less french fry
- Send one thank you text
Starting small ideas (1) would be searching for volleyball courts as close to my house as possible along on the internet. (2) Asking my social media groups if any of them play or know of groups that play (3) Researching options to fund a trip like that which won’t impact my normal budget (passive income from real estate perhaps?)
Step 4: Grow Large
Ask yourself, which of these small steps can I do a few times a week? For 2-3 of them, set a recurring reminder on your phone to do it. If you miss it, do it the next time. More than 2-3 can be overwhelming at first, so give it a few weeks of trying and then add in (or change to) another.
Each time you do one, have a mini-celebration! Play a song, do a dance, hug a kid/pet/plant, or a fist pump. Each one is a step towards that big dream, and you’re training your brain to work towards your goals. That’s a big change in your life’s direction!
As you integrate these small steps towards making “unachievable” into “I can do this”, you will naturally try more than you can handle, fumble, learn, then try again. Congratulations, this means you’re working towards your goals.
I picked reason 3 (budget and time constraints) to focus on for now. Seeing the progress towards the goal in a relatively short time is what prompted me to start Club Clover so that I can empower others to find their path.
These small steps turn into larger ones, and every time you go through the exercise you get better at identifying commitment mechanisms that work for you. One key thing is to write down your goal and post it in a visible place. Look at it every day. Change it as you want. Keep updating and working the plan to overcome the obstacles, and “unachievable” turns into “hard” turns into “might happen” and finally into “I DID IT!”
Once you have your goals, Iet’s chat about if real estate investing fits into your current plan. It’s a powerful tool to overcome the common budget and time freedom obstacles often between us and our goals. I’d appreciate the opportunity to help you to achieve your goals.
If you’re looking for an interactive way to think through this, or want more data on how to set and achieve goals, try WOOP. It’s 20 yrs of science in a simple to understand way. Or if you prefer audio, try this The Happiness Lab episode to start.