On the recommendation of a trusted resource, I have been reading and working though Danielle LaPorte’s The Desire Map: A Guide to Creating Goals with Soul. She is funny and bold with an irreverent sense of humor. She combines many of the spiritual concepts I have been studying the last 20 years and uses them to help you develop a map for creating the life you want to live. Even though none of the information is new, I have had quite a few “ah-ha’s” from how she has presented it. Her approach to goal setting really resonates with me.
In the last few years, I have had a lot of heart burn with traditional goal setting, especially the way that many of the motivational, self improvement gurus are teaching it. It is all about creating the big vision for your business and your life, breaking it down in to measurable, time specific goals and then doing whatever it takes to make it happen not matter what the cost of the sacrifice may be. Don’t get me wrong, I have taught my clients to set goals this way in the past.
In the last few years, this process has lost its shine and now just feels soul-sucking and shame-inducing. When you set a big goal and you don’t make it . . . you don’t even come close, it shakes your confidence. When you set several big goals at once and don’t come close to most of them, you can begin to wonder why you even get out of bed in the morning. It really puts a damper on what you think you can accomplish. And don’t get me started on the shaming you can feel if your goal isn’t “big enough” and you are accused of playing small . . . but I digress.
I love the question Danielle starts and ends with. It’s the question I asked every single one of my therapy clients as the beginning of their goal setting. It is a very powerful question that most people never ask themselves.
How do you want to feel?
I’m not sure why I never asked my coaching clients that question. I think because I was a business coach and business goals aren’t based on feelings and emotions. Ummm . . . except that people drive business and emotions drive people. And if you own your own business, your goals are tied up with your identity and are very emotionally driven. I know better, really I do. I just drank the Kool Aid and started doing what everyone else was doing in the business coaching world.
I’d like a mulligan, please. I’d like to start over with the questions that will really help you get where you want to go in business and in life. Take some time and really sit with these questions and let the answers unfold. Grab a cup of tea, a pencil and some paper. Go ahead, I’ll wait . . . .
- How do you want to feel?
- How do you really want to feel?
- Why do you want to feel that way? Is your desire for that feeling driven by love or fear?
- In what areas of your life do you already feel that way (even if it is just slightly or in a specific situation)?
- In what areas of your life are you really lacking those desired feelings?
- How will you know that you are feeling those feelings? What will you be doing, saying and thinking differently when you are feeling them that you are not doing, saying and thinking now?
- What things do you want to do, be or have that will allow you to feel those feelings as often as possible?
- What is one thing you can do today to feel how you really want to feel?
Whatever that “thing” is that will allow you to feel how you want to feel, do it as soon as you are through reading this post. When it comes to creating a life that you love, feeling good is key. Having fun is essential. The better you feel and the more fun you are having, the more opportunities show up for you to do, be or have the things that allow you to feel how you want to feel.
As 2014 comes to a close and you are looking ahead to 2015, I highly recommend you check out Danielle’s book. If you are interested in having someone walk through it with you to discuss the concepts and help you be accountable to doing the exercises, contact me.
I’d love to hear what you discover about how you want to feel. Please take the time to post your discoveries below.