A great thinker and plastic surgeon, Dr. Maxwell Maltz, wrote a book solely focused on the topic of setting and achieving stretch goals, called, “Psycho Cybernetics,” which I have read 69 times in the last 35 years. Fascinated with the concept of self image, Dr. Maltz believed that the self image is what controls the boundaries of our achievements. As he studied the self image, he came to understand that all of us have a goal-seeking mechanism, which can propel us to achieve what we feel and believe that we are capable of.
Throughout my career, I have studied goal-setting from three of the Greats in the field: Dr. Maltz, Ron Willingham, and Brian Tracey. From that time of study, I came to my own conclusion that there are 5 rules for setting and achieving extraordinary things. These rules are broken when it comes to one phrase in particular, which can be found in my friend, Tony Capullo’s, excellent (and short) book, called “I’m Not With the Band.” In this book, he wrote a sentence made up of 7 words – words that keep so many people from their own extraordinary achievements.
The words that could hinder achievement are:
“I don’t know how I’ll get there.”
Far too many people never get on the path to success, because of the inability to see the whole picture. This violates 2 of the 5 rules for setting and achieving stretch goals. The first rule it violates is Rule #3: Don’t let others talk you out of your goal.
Too often we fail to extend ourselves, dream big, or plan to achieve something extraordinary, simply because our current paradigm won’t allow us to think that big. So what do we do? We talk ourselves out of it, and we let others do it too. When we can’t see the entire path, we conclude that it’s impossible. Sometimes even our parents, friends, siblings, and co-workers, who can’t envision that magnitude of achievement, tell us that we can’t do it. Often, this is because they do not have the expansive thinking needed to achieve extraordinary things, so they project their own fear of failure on you.
If you think you can, you can. If you think you can’t, you can’t.
If you genuinely believe that you can achieve something extraordinary, and that you are worthy of it, then make sure not to let anyone talk you out of your goal. Get on the path, and know that the path may be crooked and long, but if you advance confidently down that path, it will unfold before your eyes in ways that you never imagined. In time, you will stand atop the mountain of extraordinary success that others said was out of your reach.
The Goal-Seeking Mechanism
Those 7 trifling words also violate Rule #5: Let your goal-seeking mechanism do the work. We do have a goal-seeking mechanism, which is much like a heat-seeking missile, and if you activate it with the right belief and visualization, it will do all of the work. So, get exquisite goal clarity, and stop worrying about whether you will succeed or not.
The most negative energy you can apply to the achievement of a goal is the pressure you put on yourself to achieve said goal. So, remember:
- You do not need to see the path to get on the path.
- Never think or say, “I don’t know how I’ll get there.”
- You can know how to get there if you learn and apply the rules for setting and achieving stretch goals.