Goal Setting – Resources

small stones 300x214 Goal Setting   Resources

What Are Your Resources?

We’re going to deal with the fifth spoke in the wheel of goal setting (or Well-Formed Outcomes). That spoke is “resources.” These resources can be internal or external. They can be mental, physical, or material. What skills or states of mind are needed to achieve your outcome? When I began my girls’ school in India, planned for an expedition in the Arctic Circle, and decided to start my current coaching and training business I needed to do an inventory of my assets and figure out what I needed to do to acquire the missing pieces. Some of these missing pieces had to do with money, some with physical fitness, some with contacts, and some with background knowledge. I needed both internal and external parts to complete the different pictures.

Acting As If
In each of these situations, the inventory showed I was lacking in certain areas. I’ve never been one to let the perfect be the enemy of the good, so I had to act “as if” I already had these missing resources or would be able to get them in a reasonable time frame. The ability to visualize was important in imagining that a particular “mini-outcome”  had already been achieved. Positive past experiences were helpful in accessing the necessary internal resources.
If you have trouble acting “as if” you may have some limiting beliefs that need to be addressed. The skills that I talked about in an earlier post, will definitely come in handy here.

Mind and Body
We have to make sure that our mental and physical resources are aligned. The mind-body separation that exists in much of American society causes us to under- or over-estimate our ability to get something done. Our physiology can determine our emotions and vice versa. We have the ability to change our physiology and to choose our emotions. I will talk about how to do this in future posts.
If you don’t have the requisite time, knowledge, skills, health, or state of mind to achieve the ultimate outcome, then you might have to start off with some smaller goals to fill these gaps.

Sometimes we also need “Other People’s Money,” equipment, information, contacts, or emotional support. This is where the ability to develop and maintain a network pays dividends.  Honestly evaluating our available and needed resources will be the difference between “magical thinking” and a clear-eyed path to progress on our outcomes.

How have you dealt with a lack of resources?

share save 171 16 Goal Setting   Resources

Six Honest Serving Men

joefriday Six Honest Serving Men

Context and the Facts

Kipling’s “Honest Serving Men” form the basis of good news reporting, good police investigation, and good research. They are also a spoke in the wheel of Well-Formed Outcomes.

When I left my last job, I violated several of the rules for creating a Well-Formed Outcome (WFO). I knew I no longer wanted to be around people who were weak, amoral (at best) dishonest, and greedy. I knew that with the right cave, I could achieve this. But how was I going to contribute to the world? Make a living? Stuff like that. Where was the positive intention? Was this really going to be under my control if I continued to work for corporate types? Were there enough specifics for me to aim at?

Just The Facts, Ma’am
Context is provided by these Six Honest Serving Men. The who, what, why, when, where kind of questions give us an outcome that is more specific and clear. Figuring out the context now will help prepare you for the later step of identifying the impact. You fine tune the outcome and help to avoid getting something you may not want. The “when” question makes sure you have a deadline. “When” helps me figure out the steps I need to take in marketing my training/consulting business to meet our income requirements.

When my wife says she wants to take a vacation, the “where” question ensures we don’t go to one of my favorite places – the Arctic Circle (yeah, really).

“Who” may be the toughest one for me. Like Diogenes, I am looking for some honest people. Any future colleagues must also have courage. Like Aristotle, I agree that “courage is the most important quality because it guarantees all the others.” Well, I won’t let the perfect become the enemy of the good, but this Well-Formed Outcome stuff isn’t always easy!

share save 171 16 Six Honest Serving Men

Set Your Goals With Sense

five senses Set Your Goals With Sense

Actually, it’s important to set your goals with your “senses.” Another leg of the “Well-Formed Outcome” model is the use of specific language when defining your goals. During the recent training that I conducted at the Leadership School for sergeants in the Baltimore Police Department, having the participants get specific with their goals was one of my biggest challenges. I got responses on short and long term goals like: “I want to get a government job.” “I want to retire and get a different career.” “I want to have the best squad in the city.”

There are several problems with being this vague. One is that you have no guideposts or markers to let you know if you are moving closer to or further away from your goal. It’s important to aim for the bullseye and not just in the general direction of the target. Without enough specificity, there is also the danger that you will end up getting things that you don’t want.

This is the time to bring in good questions and our senses. We experience the world through our five senses. To create strong internal experiences, we also bring our senses into play. We remember things that have a strong emotional impact. Our “servo-mechanism” (as Maxwell Maltz called it) is strengthened by sensory information. So, when setting a goal, ask yourself what it will look like, feel like, and sound like when you have achieved it. Use these same sensory markers to determine if you are moving closer to your goal.

Your Story
The best writers use sensory language to make their stories or information come alive. When you are writing the story of your life, make sure that you use all of your senses so that you can hit your mark. The more you live in the world of your senses, the more the world will come to life for you.

Write to me with any questions. Please retweet this post if you found it interesting/helpful.

share save 171 16 Set Your Goals With Sense

Personal Control And Your Goals

bunny control Personal Control And Your Goals

Well-Formed Outcomes
This is a continuation of the post on Well-Formed Outcomes. The first post talked about the importance of stating the outcome in the positive. The second element….

Within Your Control
It’s an easy out to say, “I just couldn’t get it done. They kept me from doing it. Now, more than ever, the evasion of responsibility is a popular path for everyone from athletes to politicians. When you’re creating your goal, make sure that accomplishing it is within your control. A goal is more attainable when it is within your control. It also ensures a measure of self-discipline when we are forced to account for the level of agency involved in any decision.

Even though you should have a goal that is within your control, you can still have others involved in the pursuit of that goal. The issue of agency and control also means that whatever it is you are doing, make sure you are doing it for yourself.

So, state it in the positive and make sure YOU can ‘get ‘er done.

Also, check out my colleague, Yaromil Fong-Olivares’s latest post at Boomer Ronin.

share save 171 16 Personal Control And Your Goals