What's Really Stopping You From Achieving Your Goals?

by Jean-Paul Cortes

We've all set at least some goals for ourselves at some point in our lives.

I'm sure you'll find your fair share of New Year's resolutions, promises and goals that you've made throughout your life if you think back a little.

Now that we're on subject, I guess it's the right time to ask: how have you done, at achieving those goals?

Don't be ashamed if you're not quite ready to admit that the answer is not pretty. Heck, I'll admit it freely, to me it's pretty hard to achieve goals.

Thankfully, I learned something that made the process of goal achieving understandable to me. And if you're also suffering for not being able to achieve your goals, perhaps you'd better read on.

Motivation and Ability

Lets start with some basics, to get from point A to point B you're obviously going to have to do something ? expend some effort, do some planning, act.

There's going to have to be some motivation for you to do that something, otherwise why would you even try.

You're going to have to be able to do that something, otherwise you'll probably waste a lot of fruitless effort.

Lets break this down, there are two critical factors towards achieving goals, you have to understand both to successfully achieve your goals.

Motivation ? Where does your motivation come from? What is it? The more you understand what motivates you, what drives you, the easier it will be to keep on working towards your goals and not be sidetracked by the inevitable setbacks that happen.

Ability ? do you have the knowledge, tools, behaviors and skills? This is where most people fall short of the mark. Few people accept help, or look for help for that matter. They can have all the motivation in the world but if they lack the ability to do what is needed, it's very likely that they'll fail.

Without either, it's unlikely that you'll consistently hit your goals.

Learning is a process and constantly sharpening the saw ? working on your ability and motivation ? is what will allow you to consistently move towards completing your goals.

Right Vision, Right Effort

An old, wise hunter thought that there was something to learn from the experience of hunting. Every moment he could, he would teach the same lesson.

When somebody young and inexperienced came along, he liked to take them out to a field where he put ten cans on top of a fence fifty feet out. He took aim and without a moment's hesitation, fired exactly ten shots, it was so quick that you could hardly hear all ten shots, but as the cans fell to the ground you could see that he had hit them all straight through.

-I'm the best shooter in this place ? he said ? Would you like me to teach you how I did it?

- Of course I do! Teach me everything, I'll do it.

He walked back to the fence, started gathering the cans and placing them on it. He asked that he be blindfolded. Again, he took aim and fired.

- Did I hit them? He asked, taking his blindfold off.

- No! Cried out the young hunter ? You old fool, why are you wasting my time, you have to be the worst marksman in town. I would never take lessons from you!

- I just showed you the most important lesson of all, said the wise hunter.

- When you want something, you have to keep your eyes open, see your target, focus and know what you want to do. Nobody, not even the best hunters, hit a target with their eyes closed.

He then went to place the cans on the fence again.

As he turned back, the young hunter, thinking he had understood the lesson, took aim and shot...

All ten cans were on the fence. He had missed them completely.

The old hunter didn't have such luck, a bullet had hit him in the head, killing him instantly.

The shooting lesson had ended, much too soon to learn more...

This story tells us an important part of achieving our goals.

We have to see our target, before we hit it. We have to clearly define our goals before we achieve them.

The old hunter gets killed before teaching him the second part of the lesson, which is learning the abilities needed and practicing them constantly.

The young hunter had all the motivation to become a sharp-shooter, he did not have the ability.

But that's something that the impatient hunter will never learn.

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