When setting goals, we usually focus on the outcome instead of the process, but healthy goal setting is all about the process! Get started on setting healthy goals today!
We need to cultivate a healthier, more sane relationship to productivity and creativity. Often, we focus on the outcome, rather than the process. You know how this goes:
- “Oh, I’ll be happy when my book is a New York Times bestseller!”
- “I’ll be stoked when I get 10,000 followers on Instagram!”
- “Life will be SOOOO GOOOD when I finally get a million subscribers on YouTube!”
It’s a slippery slope because you make your happiness, your contentment, your positive state of Being dependent on an outcome you cannot control. You are giving your power away.
As producers of life—as creative beings—it behooves us to focus on who we are becoming in the process of production and creation.
For example, if you create a new book, video, blog post, or human and you’re in a state of panic, anxiety, worry, and fear, what kind of energy do you think will be infused into this new thing you’ve created? Not sparkly, sunshiney, Unicorn laser beams of magical mojo, I can tell you that.
These desires of success are natural and intrinsic to the psychological needs of most human beings.
But CHASING those things, making those things the bedrock of WHY you do what you do, will result in the dependency on specific outcomes to make you happy. And they bring you a whole world of hurt when things don’t turn out the way you want them to.
In the words of Admiral Ackbar from Star Wars, “IT’S A TRAP!”
For goals to be healthy, we need to set ourselves up for success in more sustainable ways.
Here’s what I mean: you can set a goal of making $5,000,000 in the next six months. I’ve seen plenty of people set this kind of goal. Heck, I set a goal to make $100,000,000 in one year! Now, here’s the deal for most people: if you’re currently making $30,000 a year, that’s a really hard sell for your consciousness to believe and actualize.
Two reasons for that: you likely don’t really believe that it’s possible for you to accomplish (although you’re doing your best to convince yourself that you can), AND - you haven’t practiced a mindset or habits of abundance, action, and alignment that can invite that level of prosperity into your life.
In other words, you’re trying to “fake it until you make it.”
But you can’t fake positivity, prosperity, or a peaceful, connected state of Being. When you set yourself up for success with attainable goals - that still allow you to stretch your limits and get really uncomfortable - you’ve got a better chance of hitting them.
This actually builds a TON of confidence and motivation moving forward with your next endeavor or creative project.
You get the life lessons and building blocks to get to the next level of the game. To use the example above, perhaps you could set a goal to double your income or scale up to six figures. Then, when you learn how to do that, you can aim even higher.
This aspect of productivity is about managing your expectations and setting yourself up for scalable, sustainable, long-term success. We’re not going for the snatch and grab here; we’re setting you up for the long haul.
And remember this: life’s not a race. It’s a journey. So, enjoy the ride, and take it easy on yourself.
It is okay that the outcome is completely out of your control. The only thing you have control over is your state of Being while the thing is being created or produced.
So, when we focus on enjoying the process, learning whilst doing, growing, and evolving through our projects, the outcome becomes inconsequential. Not to say that we don’t all want attention, approval, acknowledgment, and adoration. We just need to find the healthy ways to attain our goals.
Superhero Action Step!
- Start using a Pomodoro timer today and make daily to-do lists that are prioritized.
- Build in rest and recovery into your workday by taking intentional breaks.
- Set attainable goals for yourself that stretch you past your current limits and make you feel uncomfortable (meaning you’re going to have to work for them and open up to new possibilities!)
- Ask yourself if you’re actually enjoying the process of producing and creating your work or if you’re slaving away for some imaginary outcome that may or may not happen to validate your sense of Self.
- And, please, be kind to yourself when you fall short of your own lofty goals. You’re human and allowed to get knocked on your ass sometimes.
Keep creating. Create again. Create some more. Repeat.
You rock! Don’t forget it.