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A majority of goals are based on desires and wishes. Desires to have more money, look good in the mirror, have better relationships, or write the great American novel are all examples of common goals that people make. However, when the work comes in or an inconvenience is faced or they get bored of eating chicken breasts for the fourth straight day, they abandon the goals because they want instant gratification. One of the reason that goals don’t go very far is that there is a constant battle between what gratifies someone versus the sacrifices that they need to make in order to reach their goals.

Instead of goal setting the traditional way, try this:

Come up with a personal mission that excites you and have benchmarks that can be accomplished systematically.

My mission in life is to have as many amazing experiences as I can despite my disability. For me, this includes professional experiences, personal experiences, family experiences, and more. This includes travel with my family and travel with my friends. Professionally, I want to work on projects or work with people that inspire me and give me spiritual fulfillment. When I write, speak, or have an interesting conversation, I am inspired. In addition, I am inspired every day. This can be playing with my kids, having dinner with my wife, or hanging out just watching a game on television.

I’m always inspired and motivated by this mission. No matter how frustrated I get with my disability, or discouraged by a project that did not go the way I want, I’m always inspired by this mission. In fact, one of the first activities that I do with any client is creating this mission statement.

Note- your mission statement should not be vague. It should inspire you every day and it should be unique to you. Statements such as becoming rich or becoming happy are too vague. They also don’t show you what to do when something goes wrong.

Next, is about having benchmarks around your mission. If a mission includes helping people, then develop action items based on that. Ask yourself, “what kind of people do I want to help,” “who do I need to involve,” or “what skills do I need to develop in order to make it happen.” This holds true whether you want to open a company, travel the world, or just leave an impact.