We’re talking about the steps to achieve goals that you actually want. And today we’re on step three: identifying the goal you want THE MOST!

The Steps to achieve goals so far

In the first post, Do You Really Want Your New Years Resolution? I asked if your goal was even yours at all? We often set goals that don’t excite us because they’re not what we want at all.

Next we tackled the process of brainstorming a new goal. In the post Goal Setting How To Brainstorm Your Goals  I walked you through an effective brainstorming technique that left us with four finalists.

Now we select the winner.

We Are Emotional Beings

As much as we try, there are very few times we make purely rational decisions. Emotion has always and will always play a part in decision making. Instead of trying in vain to subdue the emotional part of decision making, we would be wise to appropriately add emotion into the steps to achieve goals.

I’ll show you how.

Is Your Why Big Enough?

If we do not have an strong enough emotional anchor to our goals we will find ourselves too quickly abandoning them when the going gets tough. Resilience is not a rational skill. It is an emotional one. Willpower is not a rational effort. It is an emotional one.

So how do we know if your why is big enough?

Ask yourself. A few times, actually.

The Questions To Ask

Take the first of your four goals and ask:

  1. Why do you want to achieve it?
  2. What about that outcome makes you desire it?
  3. And why do you want that?
  4. Why?
  5. Why?
  6. Why?

If you ask yourself “why” enough you will find that emotional anchor. A great example comes from my last goal setting session with a client. He had some lofty goals, but the one that seemed the most humdrum, at least on the surface, ended up having the biggest emotional anchor.

Nutrition. He wanted to get a handle on his nutrition. It turned out that every time I asked him why, we got deeper and deeper into his real motivation: to not end up sick and ultimately disabled like his father so that he can enjoy more time with his daughter later in life.

Boom. THAT is an emotional anchor.

Now go through these questions with all four goals. You might not need all three “why” questions at the end. You’ll know when you get there because that moment might be accompanied by a lump in the throat.