I love achieving goals in life.
I think it’s one of the most beautiful sensations a human being can feel.
Whenever we accomplish a goal, we have that sense of satisfaction that takes us up to the sky. We feel proud. We know how hard it has been.
The journey from thinking to achieving is “THE JOURNEY”.
Nothing is more satisfactory in life than thinking about an idea and bringing it to reality. Something that suddenly pops up in our mind, something we started thinking and thinking about it, feeling that hesitation, that uncertainty, that dilemma that takes us closer and further from it.
We discuss it with friends, with family, with anyone who gets closer to us. Even with that old lady sitting next to us on the bus, we don’t even know her.
It’s the movement from abstract to concrete. From dream to reality.
Nothing can stop us now. We’re going for it!
I’ve done this journey many times. Most of them were failures, but some others (the lesser ones) were successes.
I can’t remember how many failures I’ve committed, but I perfectly remember the lessons I learned. That’s the only outcome you have to extract from failures. Forget about complaining, sharing it with others, bothering them.
Life is a succession of failures until success knocks on your door. It’s just a matter of time and a learning process.
Focusing my life on goal achievement, I learned there’s an essential tool I ignored in my early years.
I’ve always believed in pragmatism. I don’t like to waste my time because it’s the only asset we really have. It’s the only thing you own. That’s why you have to take good care of it.
The tool I’m talking about is semantics.
Being focused on pragmatism, semantics seems to be a “stupid” thing. Something you shouldn’t take care of. Something for those awkward individuals who dedicate their life to language, grammar, and those “nonsense” items.
Once again, I was wrong (didn’t I tell you I made and kept making lots of mistakes in my life?).
Day by day, I dedicate time to learn how our brain works. It’s an important piece in our body, no matter that many of us don’t use it very often. Studying it, we can better understand how we can make it works towards our goals.
Semantics is the linguistic’s subfield that studies meaning. Meaning is what we are looking at all times in our lives.
That’s why it is crucial the words we use.
Language is a way to understand our thoughts, to convert those “neural electric pulses” into something we comprehend.
Language is how we take our abstract thoughts to the rational part of our brains.
Rationality will take us to define our goals, think a strategy, and move us to action. Action is the only way to achieve our goals.
That’s why language is so important.
Depending on the language we use, we’ll determine how our brain understands where we want to go and how we can get there.
So, pay attention to your language.
When we begin our thinking process to start our way to fulfillment, there are two stages:
- Defining goals
We’ll navigate a little deeper into both of them.
Stage 1: Defining goals (“I WANT”)
This is the time for dreaming.
It’s when we think of all the things we want:
- I want to feel better.
- I want a big house.
- I want better friends.
- I want to create a business.
- I want to love and be loved.
We have no limits.
Later on, coherence will bring our feet to earth.
It’s important to say out loud “I WANT” to make your brain start believing. Don’t feel embarrassed. You’re just talking to yourself.
Nobody’s listening… but your brain.
As soon as you say this type of statement, visualization starts to work. That’s why you should even go further.
Write it down on paper.
Look for a photo that symbolizes that “wanting”.
Put it in front of you every day.
See it. Watch it. Feel it.
Repeat it as many times as you can. This is not an obsession. This is telling your brain you do really WANT that.
Stage 2: Action (“I HAVE TO”)
Using “I WANT” is right when you are at the first stage.
But we are not “wanters”. We are “achievers”.
Many people stay all their lives in the “I want” stage. They look for culprits. They complain. They feel frustrated. They think they don’t deserve what they have or what they are. It’s impossible to have a life of fulfillment going that way.
“Wanting” never means “achieving”.
That’s why we have to move forward into this second stage.
It’s the moment to start saying out loud “I HAVE TO”.
The most important thing in life is action, doing. That’s what really will take you to the place you “WANT” to.
That’s why, in this second stage, when you are executing things, using “WANT” is not appropriate.
- what a film director says out loud to start recording that unforgettable scene.
- the shot that starts a race.
- defining a strategy and implementing it through action items.
I’d just like to add a subtle add-on that’s been pretty useful to me talking about this stage.
Through the years, I’ve learned being “loving” to myself takes me further. Tenderness, when talking about oneself, is a fascinating tool. I used to be rougher, but that only increases the pressure, and it’s very easy to fall into a very high-pressure scenario in which performance goes down.
That’s why I use “I SHOULD” instead of “I HAVE TO”.
This is how you take advantage of semantics, paying attention to those subtle details. As Winston Churchill said,
“Luck is taking care of the details”. —
When focusing on your goal achievement process, remember these simple concepts:
- “WANT” is just a desire, an abstract concept very easy to say, but won’t take you to the place you really “WANT” to be. Use it only to define your goals.
- “HAVE TO / SHOULD” will take you into action. Action equals goal achievement.
- Use semantics to let your brain know where to focus its energy.
Be careful what you wish (WANT) for; you may receive (ACHIEVE) it.