Goals & Dreams

The Indiana Jones Guide to Achieving Your Goals

Indiana Jones

I grew up watching a lot of movies, and some of my favorites were ones with Indiana Jones, the famed archaeologist and adventurer. Indiana spent his days fighting enemies and trekking through wild and uncharted territories in pursuit of precious artifacts (or to keep them out of the wrong hands). He gave everything to his mission.

By the end of the story, Indiana is the hero. His name is synonymous with a hero overcoming (seemingly) impossible obstacles and accomplishing his goal. Think overcoming tough challenges only happens in movies? Indiana Jones’ story follows a series of steps that can help you achieve your goals if you’re willing to try. And they don’t require whips, snakes, or iconic hats, either. Just a shift in mindset and the willingness to challenge yourself to give it your all.

Is This Type of Thinking Killing Your Goals?

nothing

Several months back I interviewed a blogger named Jenny Blake who runs a successful blog called Life After College, and has actually just signed her first book deal. As I was going back through my chat with her about the process of writing a book, she said one thing that really stood out to me. She said that far too many people are victims of all or nothing thinking when it comes to the seemingly daunting task of writing a book. Most people don’t even start because they think that it has to be all or nothing: write the entire book or don’t write it all. When you think about goals in general that’s not at all how they are accomplished.

Let’s take a look at how we can overcome all or nothing thinking and actually accomplish our goals.

How to Use a Blog to Accomplish Any Goal

blog goal

A few months back I wrote a post here about why a blog is an excellent personal development tool. The other day I was watching the movie Julie and Julia (don’t ask), but because it was something that was the result of a blog, I was kind of curious about the story. I wanted to see if I could extract anything useful from watching it. What struck me about 30 minutes into the movie was the the main character set a goal, and used a blog to accomplish a goal. Sure, her goal was completely random, but it made me think that the process she followed might be a great formula for using a blog to accomplish any goal. In fact many blogs start because of an effort to accomplish some sort of goal.

Choose a goal: First you want to choose a goal. Your goal should be something that you can track or measure. It could be losing weight, learning an instrument, or whatever it is you want to do. For the sake of what I’m talking about, let’s use something like learning to play guitar. I can’t play the guitar, but I have played a musical instrument for an extended period in my life. Yep, I was a band geek.

Staying the Course: How to Keep Your Resolutions

how to keep your resolutions

How are your New Year’s resolutions? Are you still going strong or are you flagging already? When we first make a resolution or set a goal, we are naturally motivated to make progress and so we can’t wait to get out there and make things happen. But, of course, resolutions often fall by the wayside – I recently read an anecdotal statistic that 95% of New Year’s resolutions are never followed through.

So is there any point in making them? Obviously, people do succeed in achieving their goals – 5% at least! There are, essentially, two rules for becoming successful. Set goals, and take consistent action towards them. Most people don’t even do the first part, and of the minority of people that do, most will not follow through. There are many reasons for our lack of resolution. Here are some common ones, and some suggestions for overcoming them.

How to Achieve Any Goal

achieve your goals

We’re quickly heading into that brief window of time each year when far more people will casually discuss their goals with others: New Years. People at work who seem loath to accomplish much for eleven months of the year, will suddenly start talking about self development goals like seasoned veterans! And yet, the cliche is how short-lived such “resolutions” tend to be. Those who don’t proudly announce their new-found discipline will instead proclaim their defeatist cynicism: “I quit making New Year’s resolutions years ago when I realized I couldn’t keep them for more than a few weeks.”

So why are New Year’s resolutions so commonly broken? Is it that the necessary enthusiasm and intent isn’t really there? Sometimes. But I think it happens just as often that while we’re setting the types of goals that an experienced veteran may hesitate to declare, we proceed to implement them like real life rookies. This year, why not try to set and achieve goals from the seat of experience, paying particular attention to the types of obstacles that need to be avoided, and with a plan for surmounting the obstacles we can’t.

How to Realize Your Dreams

realize your dreams

We all have hopes and aspirations for our lives. Fulfilling or walking the path to fulfillment of just one of our dreams can infuse our lives with deep meaning and happiness.

The subject of this article is a strategy that is as powerful as it is simple. I call this strategy “compartmentalization” and it is something you can use daily for the achievement of your wildest dreams no matter their size or scope.

It was Thomas Carlyle who expressed the following wisdom:

Learning to Dream…. Again

learning to dream

“When my daughter was seven years old, she asked me one day what I did at work. I told her I worked at the college – my job was to teach people how to draw. She stared at me, incredulous, and said, ‘You mean they forget?'” – Howard Ikemoto (artist and art professor)

There is something wonderfully simple about the way young children see life. It is a way of seeing in which anything is possible, and this means that they see no reason why they can’t grow up to be an astronaut or a cowboy or a princess.

Daydreams: Friend or Foe?

daydream

This week I am back to full-time work after a short break. I kept myself reasonably busy during this time off, but one habit I did develop was to relax, both physically and mentally, during the mid-afternoon. On such occasions I would allow my mind to wander, or to “daydream” as this is commonly known. Daydreaming is basically a state of mind where the thoughts you experience are unrelated to what is going on in the environment around you.

Interestingly, this habit initially brought with it some guilt. I’m sure this was related to being in a “non-doing” state in a culture that increasingly values productivity. With time, however, I came to shed most of this guilt and use this period of rest in a positive way. The following are a selection of potential positives and negatives to daydreaming.

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