Yes, you have all of your goals written down, for the year, in your notebook. You have even gone as far as to make them S.M.A.R.T. But you are stuck.
You are perpetually updating your goals and making little to no progress on those goals. So you sit there at your desk staring at the monitor waiting for the perfect moment to be inspired. I totally get it. I was in that situation not too long ago. I was stuck in the planning stages. I would tell myself that before I began attacking my goals, they had to be perfect.
Unfortunately, perfect is nothing more than fear dressed in designer clothing. Perfect is the story that you have fabricated to keep yourself from committing to the work that needs to be done. They are excuses for delaying your journey until… “the perfect moment or the perfect place or the perfect situation.“
The “experts” will tell you that setting goals and making them S.M.A.R.T. is the surest path to achieving your dreams. While there is truth to that statement, it’s incomplete. In all honesty, that is backwards. You write down your goals and then spend the next 365 days checking off what you have accomplished.
First example: By the end of Q3 2015 I will have written 18 blog posts on my site, that will be focused on leadership and making ideas happen. This content will showcase me as an authority. Yes, there is the accomplishment but so what, you wrote a few articles to demonstrate your authority. But now what? Do you rinse and repeat for Q4? If the answer is yes, then your strategy is not only boring, it’s short-sighted. Why? Because as entrepreneurs part of our job is to dream – unrealistically.
Second example: I want to build a multimillion-dollar online information business that: 1. can continue to generate revenue without my repeated involvement and 2. focuses on teaching hundreds of thousands of entrepreneurs how to make ideas happen through various mediums, such as – podcasts, books, speaking, videos, online training, monthly workshops and yearly conferences.
This dream is huge. It’s scary. And this unrealistic dream will now inspire the how of making this vision come true. You just don’t start formulating some perfectly crafted plan that will bring you to your dream. It’s a journey peppered with chaotic experiences.
Your dream is a trek where how you respond matters more than what happens to you.
But more importantly you should map out the tools necessary to obtain your dream. You will need to master new skills for this journey, perhaps:
- Content Marketing
- Public speaking
- Personal Finance
- Learning Spanish
So by creating your dream you are developing an ecosystem of goals that are exciting and motivational.
“We are here to put a dent in the universe.” – Steve Jobs
Brendon Burchard, the author of The Millionaire Messenger, explains that the S.M.A.R.T. goal will not get you to your dream. Burchard recommends that if you want to achieve your dream then your goals must be D.U.M.B:
Let’s start with building a big dream. It’s when you get to tap into what most adults have forgotten to use, their imagination. So be a child and dream without fear of self-oppression and doubt.
Your goals should have a prerequisite of being positive. Your goals should inspire you to not simply accomplish them, but they should produce an abundance of joy, as the goals are being worked on.
In pursuing your goals, you need to build methods of obtaining them. Your focus should be on building habits or micro-habits that move you move closer to achieving your goals.
Behavior is one of the most important tools in achieving your goals. When you set a goal, you need to create triggers that remind you to keep chasing them.
In essence, by implementing D.U.M.B goals you are focusing on the dream first, and the goal second.
“You start with the dream. The how will come later.” – Brendon Burchard
I love the story of Scott Harrison, founder, and CEO, of Charity: Water.
Harrison was an NYC club promoter who made a good living promoting nightclub and fashion events. But Harrison soon came to realize that he was desperately unhappy and was facing “spiritual bankruptcy.” So Scott left NYC and become a photojournalist for Mercy Ships and headed to West Africa. Harrison was devastated by the degree of poverty, human suffering and diseases born from poor water supply sanitation. ”I wanted to reinvent charity. I thought it had become stigmatized. The word means ‘love,’ and I truly believe that giving time, talent, money is wholly redemptive.” – Scott Harrison
Scott became emotionally invested and decided to help fix the poor water supply issue. But he didn’t just create a few goals, Scott had a dream of helping the 2.5 billion people with poor water sanitation – get access to clean water.
Harrison had no clue how he was going to accomplish this unrealistic dream. But Scott never let the how define his vision. Today Charity: Water has funded more than 16,722 water projects in 24 countries.
You will never know what you are capable of until you remove fear and allow yourself to dream recklessly. You have a calling, someone that you are meant to be and something you are supposed to do for others, it will not be easy, but the journey will be amazing.