Reverse Goal Setting

My advice is: Stop setting goals!

Don't set another one. Don’t pick up the pen, don't write them, don't read them, don't look at them, please! ... until you watch this piece of content. Because potentially, like myself, you have probably been writing goals wrongly, the entire time. In fact, we have all been doing it for centuries.

What is reverse goal setting?

It's basically a phrase I made up recently. Reading through some content, wondering to myself, "why is it, that day in, day out, I am setting all these goals." At the start of the year, probably 30 to 40 of them. And then at the end of every single year, there are still 30 to 40 of them unachieved.

In fact, I ask myself:

• Why do I even set goals to begin with?reverse -goals-board
• Who told me to set goals?
• What is the purpose behind them?

What I found over the years is, that goal setting is kind of at odds with really having a rich and fulfilling life style.

I asked myself:

• What is it?
• Why do we do it?
• Why do we do it to ourselves?
• And certainly, why do we set goals in order to stress ourselves out?

It doesn't make any sense to me, at all.

If you want to reduce the stress in your life, my advice is:

• Start by reducing the number of goals you are setting, day in, day out.

What I found quite often is, that the goals we set are not really our goals anyway.They are friend's goals or the goals that we think other people think we should be setting. And so we set those goals and we never have any hope of getting those goals achieved.

So, what is reverse goal setting and how do we do it? Here is the system that I am now using in my life. Firstly, I significantly reduced the number of goals in my life. What I am looking for more nowadays is, in the present moment, what can I do that is actually fulfilling?

Reverse goal setting works like this:

Work out how you would like to feel today, as in what would you like to feel right now. You might write down: you would like to feel inspired; you would like to feel enthusiastic; you would like to feel confident; you would like to feel joy or peace or tranquility. Once you have got the feeling that you would like to feel, then ask yourself "What activities can I do right now that bring me that feeling?" This isn't rocket science, but you would be amazed how many times you get this wrong in life.

Step 1: Work out the feeling you would like to feel reverse -woman-thinking
Step 2: Work out an activity you can do right now that, is going to give you that feeling
Step 3: Is simply this, ask yourself "If I just did this activity on a daily or weekly or monthly basis, this activity obviously is going to compound. So, if I did this activity on a daily or weekly or monthly basis for the rest of my life what sort of result would it naturally generate?"

Here is the thing about goals. Goals will pop out of your life, whether you like it or not, if you are doing things that have momentum, that have consistency. Here is my advice, from this day forward, forget about goal setting. Ask yourself today "What do I want to feel right now?" What activity will allow me to feel that right now. And then three, six or twelve months from now, if I consistently did this over and over again, what sort of result would it create?

I'll give you an example. You might say right now, "I want to feel connected". Great! What activity allows you to do that? A fifteen minute conversation with your partner makes you feel connected. Fantastic! So, today you will want to have a fifteen minute conversation with your partner. If we did that every day for three, six or twelve months, what sort of result would that create?

Here is the funny thing, it would create a deeply connected loving relationship. So, if you want to have a deeply connected, loving relationship, my advice is to commit today to doing something that builds momentum. Some type of action that gains momentum on the last action and consistently continues to deliver a result.

You may say, "I would like to feel wealthy". Fantastic! Today, what activity makes you feel wealthy? You may say, "saving money makes me feel wealthy because every time I put $5 away I have a sense of wealth wash over my body. Fantastic! So, if you put $5 away every single day for the rest of your life, what sort of goal would that create? You and I both know the answer to that one, you will end up with a big bag full of cash, what we would like to call a cash-cushion.

My advice starting from today

Think about what you would like to feel right now, as in "Nirvana now". Why wait 40 years for that? There is no point in doing that. I guess we have been fooled all along. You don't have to wait for anything. You can feel the way you want to feel today. You don't have to postpone that. You don't have to put it off.

You certainly don't have to chase a goal every day saying:

• "Until I get the goal I'm not complete".
• "Until I get the goal I'm not happy.
• "Until I have this thing, I guess I just can't love myself".

That's completely ridiculous! You and I both know that. So today, choose the feelings you want to feel, find the activities that give you those feelings. Keep doing those activities, day in day out, so that they build momentum and before you know it, a goal will be popping out of your life that you couldn't believe.

So, that's my advice. From this day forward, start doing reverse goal setting. Tell your friends about it. Certainly share this video and free some people up. Because the fact is, for many years now, I had been using goals to stress myself out, to put myself down, to wake up in the morning feeling like I just wasn't there yet, until I got that next goal.

You will find it quite liberating. Certainly, to start doing reverse goal setting as of today. Those steps again: write down the feeling you want to feel, write down all the actions you can do today that gives you that feeling, and ask yourself " in 12 months time, if I keep doing this, what sort of result would it create?"

Read more about: Mindset

Ben is the Difference-Maker Mentor and Co-founder of Authentic Education. He is exquisite at inspiring people to share their message, make a difference in the world and live abundantly on purpose.

Ben has been featured in media such as the Today Show, Inc.com, Entrepreneur.com, Huffington Post and News.com.au.