When I lose weight, I’ll be happy…
When I finish this project, I’ll be happy…
When I make my first million, I’ll be happy…
You’ve probably said something similar to yourself at times. I know I have. What I’ve learnt, though, is that focusing purely on an outcome is deferring your opportunity to be happy. Most of those goals will only be achieved in the distant future. Some may never be achieved at all. Does that mean you will never be happy?
Staying focused only on the goal means forfeiting the pleasures we might have along the way. We devote all our energy to one aspect of life.
Even worse; there is evidence which seems to show that focusing on the goal can undermine our chances of success.
The problem with focusing solely on the goal is that our happiness is pinned on something we can’t control.
What happens if you can’t finish the project because you run out of funds?
What happens if you only lose 80% of the weight you want to drop?
What happens if it takes you a whole lifetime to make your first million?
No matter how hard you work or how focused you are, most goals are affected by external factors. Pinning your happiness on them means putting it in the hands of someone else.
I don’t want to do that, do you?
Stop focusing on the outcome.
Let’s enjoy the journey.
When you start paying attention to what’s happening along the way, you open yourself up to a new world of happiness and satisfaction.
But it’s not all about happiness.
There are other sensible reasons to focus on the journey.
- You’ll notice when you go off track. Your best chance at reaching your goals is when you stay on course, and if you’re not paying attention to where you’re going, it’s easy to be side-tracked. It’s easy to make a mistake, and it’s easy to overlook a beautiful new opportunity when it arises. Recognising these things means you can deal with them straight away and turn everything into an advantage.
- Discovering what you can do and what you can’t. I’m not only talking here about finding skills you didn’t know you had. I’m talking about your ability to manage the process and keep it under control. You can step up and take charge and you can change direction when you need to. You run the process instead of simply letting it happen.
- You discover lots of satisfying moments along the way. As we discussed in my earlier post (link) happiness and positivity are born of small things, not the great. These moments are energising and simulate your creativity, giving you an improved chance of reaching your ultimate goal.
It’s the journey which makes us the people we are. Successful people pay attention to it and savour every moment.
How do you approach your goals? Do you enjoy the journey along the way?
Looking for some extra support for achieving your goals in 2020? Contact me here and together we can put together a plan that allows you to find happiness and cultivate positivity during the journey AND give you the best chance of success!