To begin this article on the productive process of setting goals, dealing with game-changing events, and our responses, I'd like to share a personal experience. Last week was a busy week at work that left me tired and lacking in energy. When attempting to pull off my usual workout, I fell short of all my goals. This even remained true when I reset goals "on the fly" and retried on different days. This kind of burnout occurs from time to time. So instead of getting bent out of shape about this, I've learned to accept the outcome in the moment and simply reset my goals.
So What is the Productive Process?
The productive process is a simple step by step process that keeps us on track. Here's it is broken down into steps:
- Set a goal that is ownable, reachable, and measurable. Ownable means it's a goal you would want to do, reachable means it's a goal that you know you can accomplish, measurable means it's a goal that is specific enough that you know when you have reached it.
- When events or circumstances interfere with reaching our goal, we have the choice of acceptance or resistance. When we respond with resistance this is usually accompanied by frustration, anger, and maybe discouragement. When responding with acceptance, we may be disappointed, but we can also calmly rethink our present strategy in the moment.
- We can finally reset a new goal realizing failures can be one more step to success if we let them.
Where Did We Learn That?
Angry resistance is the result of having an unrealistic or unhealthy view of ourselves as individuals. Not recognizing intrinsic or God-given limitations is a pride that is incompatible with a healthy self-concept. As an extreme illustration to get this point across, we would not attempt to jump off a cliff and fly without outside help since we have a realistic self estimate. Intrinsic or God-given limitations need not be confused with limitations we place on ourselves.
Learned or self-imposed limitations go hand-in-hand with a low self-concept. When dealing with these kind of limitations we need to look back in time to find out where we learned these things. After this we can let go of any limiting belief systems and relearn new attitudes, perspectives, responses, and habits.
It's also worth mentioning that history bears record of many influential individuals who failed but never gave up until they achieved their dreams. Abraham Lincoln and Thomas Edison are two worth mentioning.
Summing It Up
When dealing with setbacks in life we need to first have goals set. Then when we deal with interfering events we need to choose acceptance instead of resistance followed by resenting our goals.
So how do you handle setting goals and setbacks to goals? Do you set goals that are ownable, reachable, or measurable? Do you accept setbacks and reset your goals? What aspects of the productive process of setting goals, game changing-events, and responses are you good at and what aspects do you need to improve?