Chapter 8 | The Art of Setting Goals

(Part 1 out of 4)

In this chapter I'll discuss:

* The basics of goal setting

* What you do in regard to your dreams

* Do you have enough reasons to succeed?

* What are your plans?

* The process of writing your goals

* Do you know how to ask?

* The correlation between your brain and a farmer's field...

The Art of Goal Setting:

Goals are the basis to real success in life.

Clear and evident goals reflect your future vision, and provide the inspiration you need to move toward that vision.

In his book “Think and Grow Rich” Napoleon Hill wrote: "Anyone can aspire wealth and most people do, but only a few know that a defined plan along with a burning desire for wealth, is the only tool you can count on to get rich.

He also wrote: "Wealth responds only to precise plans based on specific ambitions by way of devotion”.

Think how profound the quote above is.

You can’t become rich, successful, healthy or any other aspiration without a plan.

Think about this image, for example:

A man stands in front of the fireplace at winter time, wanting to warm himself…

He tells the hearth: "First you generate the heat, then I’ll set the logs on fire"!

Does it seem reasonable to you?

How many people do you estimate (or personally know perhaps) live by this approach?

I'll tell you – millions.

Learning how to set goals was more than anything, one of the things that soon changed Rohn’s life for the better. Once you turn the process of setting goals to a skill, it will make a great impact on your life.

Regarding the episode I talked about in a previous chapter "the principles of inter-personal communication", Rohn talks about what happened before he wrote his list of goals:

One morning after breakfast, Mr. Shoaff asked Rohn if he could see his list of goals:

Mr. Shoaff: "Let me see your list of goals, so we can go over them and discuss them.

It's the best way I can help you now".

Rohn: "I don’t have a list here..."

Mr. Shoaff: "Where is it? Did you leave it at home or in your car?"

Rohn: "No sir, I have no such list anywhere”.

Mr. Shoaff: "If so young man, now is the time to start”. Shoaff added: "If you don’t have a list of goals, I'm guessing you have only a few hundred dollars in your bank account..."

Obviously his guess was correct, which caught Rohn’s attention.

Rohn continued: "You mean, if I had a list of goals it would have changed my current account balance?"

Mr. Shoaff: "Drastically!"

That day Rohn became a student at the "how to set goals” faculty.

Since that day, his life has undoubtedly changed - his income, his bank account, his personality, his lifestyle and his successes.

Before I discuss in further detail about setting goals, it’s important to understand the five factors influencing your life: the environment, events, knowledge, consequence and last but not least which is often ignored and has great influence on your life, looking to the future, your dreams.

I won’t dwell upon the first four right now, but will focus only on the fifth – the dreams.

Of all the five factors above, make sure your dreams are the ones to influence you when making a decision and in your everyday activities.

Make certain the motivating force that drives you, is the future.

In order for your dreams to influence you and the future to drive you - your future must be planned.

Donald Trump rightly said: "If your reality starts with your dreams, your dreams will become your reality".

There are two options to welcome the future: one - with apprehension, the second – with anticipation.

Now guess how many people fear their future...


Because their future isn’t properly planned and sometimes without being aware of it, they "bought" someone else’s point of view on "how to live".

You’ll look to the future with anticipation only if you have a plan that excites you, only when you planned in advance your future desirable results.

In order to shape your future, you must have goals – properly defined goals will attract you in their direction.

The better you define them, the more you detail them, the more effort you put in them - the harder they’ll pull you.

They’ll also pull you in times of crisis.

Without goals, it’s very easy to let your life deteriorate to a state of "just living".

You have a choice: either simply exist or design yourself a successful life.

Regarding the conversation above, between Rohn and Mr. Shoaff, the latter said:

"I don’t think your current account balance reflects your level of intelligence" - this of course, was good news for Rohn and therefore he asked: "If so, why don’t I have more money in my bank account?"

Mr. Shoaff replied: "That's because you don’t have enough reasons to do great things.

If you’ll have enough reasons, you'll be able to do amazing things... You have the adequate

intelligence, but you don’t have the adequate reasons."

Keep the above expression in mind: if you’ll have enough reasons.

You can’t give a solution if you have no reason, right?

Life has a funny way in which solutions are hidden, and are revealed only to those who were inspired to look for them, to those who have reasons to look for them.

In other words, when you know you want something and you want it hard enough, you'll find ways to get it.

For example, you want to become rich - are there books, articles and websites on the issue?

The answer is yes.

There are some really good books, articles, and sites... But if you don’t feel a burning desire to become rich, you probably won’t read anything.

What motivates you to find the answer is - desire.

Therefore, deal previously with the reasons and needs and then with the solutions.

What are your reasons?

People have different reasons to why they should succeed in life.

I suppose you could create a list with enough reasons why you want a healthy, luxurious and

happy life.

There are the personal reasons: some seek honor and acknowledgement, some want it for the feeling of being successful - a winner.

This might explain why many millionaires are still working ten hours a day...

It's not because they need the money – it’s the satisfaction and exhilaration they constantly feel, of being successful. It’s not the money that motivates them, but the journey.

Family is another reason that motivates people to succeed in life.

Some people become very successful thanks to others - and that’s an excellent reason.

Many times we do things for someone else, which we probably wouldn’t have done for ourselves.

Here’s a goal you often hear: "I'll do anything to give my children a proper education".

Can someone's family influence him in such a way? The answer is definitely yes, and what a privilege it is to be influenced like that by someone else.

Generosity can be a great reason for motivation to succeed in life.

Some people accumulate a lot of money, so they can later contribute back to society.

When Andrew Carnegie (a well known steel magnate who lived in the U.S) died, his desk drawer was open and an old piece of paper was in it.

On this piece of paper Mr. Carnegie wrote his goals in life, and he wrote them when he was in his twenties – the paper read:

I'm going to spend the first half of my life accumulating great wealth.

I'm going to spend the second half of my life giving it all back to society.

I think that's just amazing!

This goal was so inspiring and motivating, he made $ 450,000,000 (!) in the first half of his life and gave everything back during the second half of his life.

What motivates you?

What makes you get up early in the morning, work hard and stay up late at night?

What inspires you?

What turns you off?

Find out what turns you off and get rid of it. Make a list of things that will motivate you.

Once you start achieving your goals, you'll never want to stop taking action.

You may bump into some difficulties along the way, but you'll never stop taking action.


Continue to Chapter 8 | The Art of Setting Goals - Part 2


* Chapter 7 | Interpersonal Communication - Part 2

* Chapter 7 | Interpersonal Communication - Part 1

* The Magazine