The Experts Up Close
Cynthia Kersey is the best-selling author of Unstoppable: 45 Powerful Stories of Perseverance and Triumph from People Just Like You , as well as a performance and productivity coach.
Q: Why set goals?
Jim Cathcart: Why set goals??? Because that’s the only way to get what you want! Seriously, the world works in
ways and one of the most powerful of those is known as the “law of attraction.” The premise is that a desire, fervently
expressed, will draw energy to it that will bring it into reality. I know this to be true, both from my personal experience
and from the experiences of hundreds of others I’ve known and worked with over the past 32 years.
You must tell the world what you want. Once you do, others will bring you opportunities and assistance you could never
have dreamed of on your own. Set your goals before you know the path and the paths will appear!
Q: What advice do you have for helping me stick with my goals throughout entire year?
Cynthia Kersey: Start every day by focusing on why you want to achieve your goal and the cost of not following through.
Remember, the “why” behind a goal is actually more important than the goal itself. Your purpose is your motivation—the
driving force behind your efforts to make a change in your life. Knowing your why intensifies our desire and commitment;
if we can create enough reasons why we want to make a change, there’s nothing that can stop us.
For example, while a goal to organize your office may not seem very compelling, keeping in mind the purpose behind the
goal—creating peace of mind, working in a clutter-free environment, and being able to focus on a new project with greater
clarity—will motivate you when your energy lags. The more compelling the purpose you can identify behind any change
you’d like to achieve, the stronger the motivation to get you through any obstacles you might experience.
Each day, spend a few minutes connecting fully with why you set your breakthrough goal and the deep satisfaction you will
experience when you have achieved it. Think about how achieving this goal will positively impact other areas of your life.
Feel the joy and excitement you’ll experience by honoring your commitments to yourself today to make that goal a reality.
Just as important, review what it will cost you if you don’t achieve your goal. What if you don’t start eating a
diet, lower your cholesterol or save money for the future? And how will those consequences make you feel? Our emotions drive
our behavior, so fully connect with the pain of failure to motivate you to take action.
Remember, you have the power to condition your mind, body and emotions to motivate and drive you to change your behavior
in ways you may not have thought possible. Keeping the “why” of your goal at the forefront of your mind will motivate
you to take on even the most tedious, difficult or frightening steps toward the achievement of your goals.
Affirmation: I start each day connecting fully with why I have set this goal and vividly imagine the great benefits
and feelings I will experience when I achieve it. Every time I take a single step, I am closer to making this important change
in my life and I will not stop until it is fully realized. I will not settle. I am unstoppable!
Q: Is there anything I should think about before sitting down to write my goals?
Jim Cathcart: Yes. Think about what you care about. Goals are the crystallization of desires. But without clear
desires the goals don’t work. You need to know what matters to you. ONLY set goals for you, even if the goal is to serve
others, it must be YOUR goal to do so, not someone else’s. This is because emotion drives goal achievement. Desire fervently
expressed will draw energy to itself. That fervent expression is “emotion.” You must feel the pull of your goals. So
some time listing what matters to you. What turns you on, turns you off, makes you mad, gets you excited, etc.? Learn where
your hot buttons are. Reflect on times in your life when you were excitedly working toward an outcome. Learn from your own
* Image courtesy of Barry Stein – BarryCreative.com