A goal is something that I’m placing into the future because I am not yet ready or willing to make it a decision in the present.It's okay to have goals, I just need to recognize them for what they are- desires, not decisions. Click To Tweet
Goal making gurus will tell you it’s not a goal until it has a deadline and a plan of action, but even the best planned goals remain unmade decisions; they allow for the possibility of it not happening.
A decision is much stronger than a goal. A decision happens when I choose one option to the exclusion of others and don’t give any more attention to the options I excluded.
There are two basic varieties of decisions when it comes taking action in our lives: input decisions and outcome decisions.
An input decision is a decision I make on a regular basis to take an action or not take an action. When accumulated over time, these little input decisions will largely be responsible for the type of circumstances I experience in life. An input decision is something that I can answer either yes or no to on a regular basis. Did I do five minutes of yoga today? Yes/No. Did I meditate for 15 min today? Yes/No. Did I verbally express my appreciation to someone today? Yes/No. You should be able to easily keep score of your input decisions. How many days in a row have I done my 5 minutes of yoga? I’m a big fan of making and tracking input decisions. I like to call them “blissiplines” because they require daily discipline, but they create both short term and long term bliss as we accumulate the consequences of the daily inputs over time.
An outcome decision is when I decide that something will happen, one way or another. I may start with a plan of action, but if it proves insufficient, I adjust and keep acting and adjusting as required because the decision is already made. Whenever I make an outcome decision, I should immediately make one or more input decisions that will help me create the outcome I’ve decided will happen.
Outcome decisions are trickier to do right because it’s easy to get confused about what makes a good outcome decision. Most of the goals you’ve made in your life have been of the outcome variety, but have been motivated by the insecurity of the personality in an attempt to seek for greater security anywhere but the only place it can be found (the Soul).
As a result, these types of goals typically increase your sense of insecurity and insufficiency while creating unnecessary stress in your life. Your personality creates an attachment to a certain desired outcome and then when that outcome doesn’t happen in the time and in the way that your personality wanted, you become disappointed and discouraged.
But there is a right way to make outcome decisions that can be a very powerful source of focus and direction in your life. The vital ingredient in a proper outcome decision is that it must be focused exclusively on that which is in your control and it must not be dependent in any way on anything that is not in your control.
That condition effectively eliminates 99% of the outcome based goals you’ve probably made in your life so far. But the 1% that remain are the really powerful ones that matter most and the only ones worthy of your full decisive power.
Here are some examples of powerful outcome decisions:
– No matter what life brings me, I will figure out how to use it to assist me in greater Soul realization.
– No matter what decisions my children make in life, I will always love them and treat them with kindness and do whatever is in my power to contribute to their own Soul realization.
– I will treat all others with kindness regardless of how they treat me, because kindness is the very nature of my Soul.
– I will always make self-care of body, mind and Soul an important part of my life on a regular basis and never allow myself to get too out of balance before correcting and restoring balance.
Questions to Ponder:
– What goals to I habitually make, but never really accomplish? How can I convert them into an input decision that I can answer Yes/No to on a daily basis and track my inputs over time?
– What kind of outcome based goals have I been making and are they in the 99% that I really don’t control or that are really just insecure personality based desires? If so, how can I convert them to the 1% kind that are really decisions that come from my Soul?