We all have set some goals in our lives, haven’t we? But setting goals is one thing and achieving them is another. Doesn’t it feel great when we achieve our goals as desired? Have you ever wondered why we all set goals and somehow only a few people achieve them? This is exactly what happened to Jim Carrey.

“Jim Carrey, who’s a well-known Hollywood actor and comedian, was struggling to find good roles in 1985. He wrote himself a check of $10 Million stating ‘acting services rendered’. He daydreamed about earning $10 Million and had imagined himself entertaining the world. And 10 years later, circa the Thanksgiving of 1995, he found out that his movie Dumb and Dumber was going to earn him $10 Million”.

After reading this you’ll wonder what was it that Jim Carrey did differently? And are there other successful people who have set goals and achieved them? The answer is yes.

Bruce Lee’s story is also worth mentioning as he was one of the first successful Oriental actors who made it big in Hollywood. Bruce Lee became a star in China in 1971 with his movie “The Big Boss”, which went on to become Lee’s one of the greatest Martial Art classics. Soon after that, he rose to stardom in Hollywood and the rest is history.

But what many of us do not know is that in 1969 Bruce Lee had documented on paper, his life goal of becoming the highest-paid Oriental Actor in Hollywood. The paper was titled “My Definite Chief Aim”. The letter was written by Bruce Lee to himself (Ref: Goalcast) which reads as follows:

My Definite Chief Aim

I, Bruce Lee, will be the first highest paid Oriental superstar in the United States. In return, I will give the most exciting performances and render the best of quality in the capacity of an actor. Starting 1970 I will achieve world fame and from then onward till the end of 1980, I will have in my possession $10,000,000. I will live the way I please and achieve inner harmony and happiness.

Bruce Lee

Jan. 1969

Sadly, Bruce Lee passed away in 1973, but by then he had already accomplished what he had written on that paper.”

So, what was it that Jim Carrey did differently? What made him write that check which was exactly the same amount as $10 Million that he earned for his movie Dumb & Dumber? Or what was it that Bruce Lee did differently that made him the first famous Asian star in Hollywood? What they did differently was that they worked relentlessly towards achieving their goal without losing their focus.

The ‘Key’ to setting Goals and achieving them

Goal achievement requires a lot of focus and dedication. While setting goals, it is advisable to set specific goals with a deadline to achieve them. ‘CREATE’ is a well-known method of Goal Setting.

To elaborate more, CREATE stands for:

C – Concise

R – Realistic

E – Ecological

A – As if now

T – Timing

E – End Step

Again, if we think of Jim Carrey or Bruce Lee’s story, what they did was, they set a certain goal, pictured themselves achieving it and voila, a few years later, they had indeed achieved it.  Let’s see how they actually did it:

Having Concise goals that are Realistic and Ecological is important.

Concise goals can be long term goals which can further be broken down to small achievable goals for the short term. This helps us stay focused on our goals and when we achieve our short-term goals, we find the motivation to achieve the bigger ones in the long-term.

Realistic goals are goals that are achievable with significantly high chances of success. This means goal setting should be done after considering the present circumstances and if the goal will be achievable in the near future.

Ecological goals are goals that do not affect us or anyone else negatively during the goal-setting process. One is completely aware of their surroundings during the goal-setting process.

The goals should also be measurable. Also, establishing a Timeframe for goal achievement is important. The timeframe is an important factor so that one doesn’t lose focus from the goal. Also, achieving the goal within the set time without our everyday tasks taking a priority over the long-term goals should be important.

The most important part of goal achievement is End-Step. Without the end-step, goal achievement may not be possible in most of the cases. Why? Because if one doesn’t know what they want to achieve, how will they achieve it?

This brings us to our next question, as to what is end-step?

Experts say that when we set out to achieve any goal, we should have the end picture or end-step charted out in our minds. End-step is your destination or your end-goal. 

Dr. Stephen Covey coined the term ‘Start with the end in mind’ in his bestselling book, ‘The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People’ and, since then, this term is being widely used by various life coaches, NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming) experts, and motivational speakers.

When we imagine ourselves achieving our goal, our brain captures that image and understands that a goal has been set. Following the end-step process helps us stay focused and motivated instead of straying from our goals. However, if we don’t have the end-step, our brain will not be able to create a picture of us achieving what we want and so, it will become tough for us to achieve that goal.

Experts say that the subconscious mind doesn’t differentiate between reality and imagination. Hence, if a vivid imagination of us achieving our goals is created, the brain starts working towards that goal and helps us achieve it. And that’s why end-step is really important for goal achievement.

To sum it up, having goals in our lives makes it worthwhile and gives us a purpose for our existence. Some people want to be able to do business successfully, some want to travel while some of them want to save the environment. 

All these are goals, they can be big and small but, setting goals and achieving them motivates us to move ahead and do more in our lives. So, remember to set realistic, measurable and achievable goals and CREATE ways to achieve those goals without straying from it.

To know more about personal goal setting, read our blog titled “Personal Goal Setting: How to Stay on Course and be Self-motivated”.

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