I ask all my clients, “What do you want in order to feel happy and relaxed?” Their answers are revealing. They fall into four main categories.
- To have enough money. Then I won’t have to worry about it any more. I’ll feel safe. And I’ll be able to buy whatever I want.
- To be loved.
- To be famous.
- To be successful.
These answers have not varied over the last 20 years that I have been a Change Coach. What’s interesting about all of these stated “wants” is that none of them is attainable without first achieving something else. You do not just get to be wealthy, you have to do something to create the wealth. It’s the same with all of the other stated “wants”, they are simply by-products of other achievements. Every success story starts with a clear definition of what you want.
How To Know What You Want
You already know the answer. Yes, I know you’ve thought about this a lot and you‘ve come up with many different answers. However, there is one answer that keeps occurring to you. Maybe it seems unlikely that you will ever be able to achieve that goal. But your lack of certainty does not mean that you cannot make it work for you, if you go about it in the right way.
By “go about it in the right way” I mean that you have to become the person who will create the life you want. You cannot simply go on being the way you are and expect something different to happen for you. This may seem like such a daunting task that you have developed a habit of avoiding it. But that does not mean that it is not right for you.
The questions you have to answer are:
- ”What do I keep thinking about?”
- ”What do I dream about?”
- ”How do I see myself spending my time when I dream about this?”
- ”How do I feel when I think about this particular dream coming true?”
Come on, admit it, there is something that repeatedly occurs to you that you’d love to be doing with your life. It is the lifestyle that you can see yourself enjoying. Perhaps it is the success that you can visualise for yourself that appeals to you? Maybe you have often seen yourself doing this?
How To Get Clear About What You Want
Write down that activity you dream about. The act of writing it down will help it to become more real for you. Write it down as a description of you actually doing it. Write it down in a way that makes you feel good about doing it.
You may not get your description of your dream goal right first time. Your dream can be hidden within a shell. For instance one client had a dream of being a writer. But she hadn’t defined what she wanted to write about so she could never get started.. She needed to do more work. She asked herself, “What am I good at?” And, “What do I love doing?’ After much soul-searching she recognised that she loved exploring old historic houses. She wrote a book, Explore The Hidden Mysteries Of Historic Houses. It gave visitors to historic houses something more to look for. It became a best seller.
The point about asking, “What am I good at?“ And ”What do I love?” Is that you go on doing things that interest you and that you love doing. And because you enjoy an activity you do it a lot and you get to be good at it, provided you set yourself the standard of excellence in what you do.
It’s no good just doing it, you have to do it to the best of your ability, always.
Can you visualise yourself following your dream excellently? (Excellence is the key to prospering at any activity.) Can you see yourself putting in the back-braking work necessary to achieve the high standard that will create the income you desire? I ask because it is common for people to think that dreams come true as if by magic. Experience shows that this is very rarely the case. Most of the time it takes perspiration to achieve meaningful goals.
What’s Stopping You Now?
How do I know that you are now starting to feel a bit deflated, even a bit frustrated? You wanted me to give you a quick and easy answer, right? But this is something you have been struggling with for a long time. There is no quick and easy answer. If there was you’d have found it by now. However, you can find the answer if you just do what I am suggesting. But you have to DO IT and do it well.
Personally I found it difficult to work my way through this particular maze. The things that were holding me back were:
- I did not know enough about myself. See, Know Yourself article. I had never put in the hard miles to understand what I really wanted. I was nervous about doing this because it might mean giving up much of what I enjoyed about my present life.
- I felt nervous about making changes. See, You Must First Conquer Your Fears article. I was afraid that I would fail, that I would look stupid. And to be brutally honest, I was not prepared to commit to all the hard work required.
- I had no strategy for pursuing what I wanted.
- Even though I identified what I wanted to do quite early I could not bring myself to pursue my dream with enthusiasm, passion and excellence because I did not believe that I could succeed. There were many plausible arguments, particularly in my school achievements, that suggested that I would fail.
How I Succeeded In The End
In truth my back story was littered with clues, but I have to confess that I did it the hard way, by trial and error. I got really good at failure. I failed many times. But I managed to somehow not fail disastrously, always managing to just keep my head above water. All the time I was partially doing what I love to do and learning from my failures. I learned that I am very persistent.
The BIGGEST lesson for me was that I needed to improve the quality of my work. I needed to practice what I love doing but also to constantly up my game. In other words I needed to become a master of my craft. I learned to respect my audience.
I don’t recommend my way of getting what you want. I could have got what I wanted a lot sooner had I done three things:
- Taken the trouble to clearly define what I wanted.
- Made myself into the person who could get what I wanted. In other words devoted myself to learning about myself, about my craft and by practicing in a way that would make me a master of my craft.
- Had the courage to override my fears and commit myself completely to the route I wanted to follow.
I can help you work your way through the maze of your thoughts, but first you have to decide that you really want to do this.
The Quality That Will Get You What You Want
Everyone who succeeds in any field of endeavour possesses the quality of persistence. If you read the articles in this blog, practice with the mantras and TAKE ACTION you will get what you want.
How Mantras Will Help You
You need a way of reminding yourself of what you need to do. It has to be something that you can do constantly so that you develop a new habit of doing what you need to do. Mantras are a good way to constantly remind yourself of what you need to do in order to become who you need to become in order to get what you want.
Your first task is to define what you really want. Your mantra for this exercise is: ”I notice what I repeatedly thing about myself doing.” It will help you if, when you notice what you are thinking about yourself doing, you write it down or make a note on your Voice Memos on your phone. When you review your notes you will notice that you have repeatedly noted certain activities, these are telling you what you really want. Imagine yourself doing this really well, how does that make you feel?
Make a note of you doing what you want to do and anchor the feeling that goes along with you doing that activity.