“Commitment is an act, not a word.”
Today, gyms will be filled with newcomers. Most of them will be gone by February.
Whenever I ask the question, “Who wants to give up goals?” I am aware that I’m stepping into, what for many of us, is sacred territory. From Confucius to Tony Robbins goals are presented as religious absolutes. And yet, why do so many people make goals on New Year’s Eve that never really come to fruition?
To establish a little credibility, here is my experience with goals:
Prior to finding my life’s work I was a staffing executive in Southern California. I managed sales teams in recruitment and temporary help. During those 12 years, I was responsible for annual, bi-annual, quarterly and monthly goals programs. I also worked on corporate, regional, branch and individual goal reporting. I recall countless of awful meetings as management sat in a room pontificating about goals with one year, three year and five year plans.
Throughout this experience, five percent of my sales people generated ninety percent of the revenue. Most were way too busy to discuss goals:
“Don’t bother me, I’m closing a deal.”
“I’m too busy, just make something up.”
“Are you kidding? I keep exceeding your goals.”
The remaining ninety-five percent of my sales people prepared fantastic goal planning sessions. They would bring in beautifully crafted spreadsheets. Others brought in pictures of expensive cars they would proudly buy before the end of the year. Except, most of them were gone by the end of the year.
In 1988 Los Angeles Times Magazine published an article about the Platinum Triangle, which, at the time, was the hottest real estate market we have ever experienced. The Triangle includes Beverly Hills, Brentwood and Malibu. Jon Douglas, Mike Glickman, Jeff Hyland and others were raking in millions each year. But, the article disclosed the average of several thousand agents flooding this most premium of markets. The annual average was $18,000. I have since met with and in some cases worked with the top brokers from that period. Bring up goals to them and they look at you as if you just don’t quite get it.
The basic problem with goal programs is they are based in the future.
If anything is based in the future, we can get away with murder and humans are capable of playing extraordinary games with the semantics of goals.
I am a perfect example.
In September, my partner and I spent two weeks in Italy, most of it at the perfectly idyllic Lake Como. We landed in Milan and planned on spending a day in the fashion district to buy clothes. After two hours walking through the Galleria and the salons of Armani and Versace we looked at each other and in unison said,
So, we made a deal to go back shopping in Milan when we’ve lost the weight, when we are as perfect as the svelte Milanese who walk ten miles a day and smoke a pack of cigarettes.
In December, my internist said,
“Well the good news is you are remaining steady with your weight.”
This was not good news.
How many cookies can get swept under the rug if we are going to be at our perfect weight when we return to Italy?
How many sales calls can be forfeited if we are going to make a $100k in six months?
Unless there is a compelling reason to change our behavior right now, especially if the behavior includes discomfort, very little happens.
Goals are often based on creative thinking and the world’s mental institutions are filled with creative thinkers.
No, unless we based our action on existing and present need, nothing really changes.
Unfilled goals create a feeling of inadequacy which is far more damaging towards the probability of our success.
What do you urgently need and want today?
Truthfully, what actions do you need to take to fulfill those needs right now?
Our participants get this distinction! Our community is filled with thousands of people who’ve landed dream jobs, launched new companies, found their life partners, become soul mates and live the lives the are meant to have.
None of that happens in the future because no matter how hard we ever try, all that we have is right now.
I hope you get the gentility of this message without having to experience a few more brushes with mortality.
You don’t have December 31st, 2015. You have January the 2nd.
What will you do to change your life today?
What is worth the discomfort?
Let’s stop playing games! Or, at the very least, perhaps we can have more fun with them.
All the best,
President & Founder
P: (310) 277-4850
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