How I created and achieved my goals in 2016
For as long as I can remember, I've always been a goal setter. I believe it's been a driver of growth, as it documents a path to guide us to where we want to be. It's easy to think about a few things we want to do but life has a way of getting a bit too hectic to keep up or even remember what they were.
Here's how I made progress in 2016:
I am a believer in aiming high. I do this because I know if I fall short, I still would have had to make significant progress. For instance, one of my goals in 2016 was to read 35 books. I fell short of this goal and fell right around 18 or 19.
Does this mean I failed? Technically it does until you compare how many I read the year before, which was about 4 or 5. I truly believe if my goal was to read 10, I would have landed around 7. Aiming high will stretch your mind, as well as your effort.
Another point in goal creation is to determine who you want to be. This will help you reverse engineer what your yearly goals are. I decided I want to become a business owner, an expert in finance, and an expert in Jiu-Jitsu. Just as I set out to do, I achieved getting my hand raised at purple belt, got a business off the ground (JiuJitsuFinance.com), and increased my knowledge of money through extensive self education.
Revisiting Your Goals
For the few that actually look at their goals again, it's common to revisit them only at the end of the year. This is a crucial error. As our circumstances may change day to day and month to month, so will our goals. A lot can change in twelve months, which is why I propose reviewing once a month, or at the very least every three months.
If you're only looking back in December, it's easy to think you failed or did not achieve, while the truth is that some of your goals aren't relevant anymore. One example of mine is that I was going to build a certain business with a business partner I was working with. As the year progressed, neither the business or the partner seemed viable as to where my vision was going. In considering these changes, my goals were very different in June, as compared to January.
Revisiting also keeps our desires relevant. It's helps us remember that we even have them. Ideas aren't enough, we must execute.
As the great Thomas Edison said, "Vision without execution is hallucination."
Success Through Creating a Peak State
I'd say about half of my goals were geared toward progress in my grappling training. This year's biggest lesson has proved that the principles of martial arts are applicable to all aspects of life.
As the backstory goes, I had always been an average baseball player growing up. This trend continued in my transition to adulthood as an employee. Looking back, I had always performed best under pressure. Whether it there were two outs in the ninth or a tight deadline at work, the most productive me always showed up.
I'd spent years trying to figure out why my general performance in life was average except for these outlier instances. Two things helped me get to the next level. Tony Robbins's teachings on the peak state, as well as John Waitzkin's book "The Art of Learning." It was all about the peak state.
It all clicked for me one Saturday mid year. I was rolling with a tough black belt at our academy, who I knew took each practice seriously. Many times, it felt like a real fight. This particular day, my instructor was paying close attention to our sparring session where I gave my partner a good run for his money. When he asked me why I don't do that with everybody, I replied "because I know it matters to him."
That's when I truly identified my peak state. When things really matter, I turn it on. I figured out that I needed to tap into this "peak state" every time I do anything, especially Jiu-Jitsu. I do believe this is the reason I got my hand raised for the first time. I effectively tricked myself into believing that the match had real consequences that mattered to me. Previously, my subconscious self knew a loss wouldn't particularly have any true effect. I was still going back to my normal life no matter the outcome. Though it's a work in progress, it's made each training day more effective. Needless to say, it has made a world of difference.
1. Systematically create your goals based on who you want to become
2. Revisit them OFTEN
3. Find your peak state