This is the time of year when we begin to think of goals for 2016. Not New Year resolutions but goals that set a direction for the upcoming year. I encourage you to set goals that are meaningful and challenge you to grow.
My wife Anne and I have created space in our schedules every year to talk and set goals ever since our first year of marriage. Without a doubt it’s been one of the most unifying practices for our family. However, there are times when we struggle with an overemphasis on getting things done. Sometimes this is at the expense of enjoying the beauty of everyday or including play into our schedules.
According to my Strengths Finder Profile, one of my top five strengths is the Achiever theme. It helps explain my drive. I have an internal burning desire in me that pushes me to do more, to achieve more. I’ve learned to accept that this relentless need for achievement will always be with me. It’s who I am. However, I’m learning to allow my achiever tendency to be refined and not get out of balance.
This past year I studied and tried to execute the key principles Greg McKeown’s excellent book Essentialism with my fellow travelor Greg. The book’s “Less but Better” axiom has profoundly effected my approach to work and life. Here are a couple of questions McKeown challenges the reader with:
What if society stopped telling us to buy more stuff and instead allowed us to create more space to breathe and think?
What if we stopped being oversold the value of having more and being undersold the value of having less?
What if we stopped celebrating being busy as a measurement of importance?
What if the whole world shifted from the undisciplined pursuit of more to the disciplined pursuit of less…only better?
In 2016 one of my mantras is “Not more but better”. Working hard and achieving results is important. But more effort doesn’t necessarily yield more results. This year I hope to have the courage to live a life that is true to my calling instead of a life that tries to prove my worth to others. I have a desire to live out better what I’ve been put on this earth to do. I’m thankful for my accomplishments of last year but I’m not going to rest on them.
My focus for 2016 is “Not more but better”. I seek to have more genuine conversations that lead to better relationships. I’m going to try to not work more but work on the vital few. Life is short so I’ve made a commitment to enjoy the truly important with the little time I have left.
2016 looks like it’s going to be quite a journey. Thanks for for being along for the ride.
I’m a big fan of Jeff Goins. His writing is out of this world. I hope you enjoy his end of the year post as much as I did.
This post originally appeared on Jeff Goin’s blog Goins,Writer
In 2015, I made more money than I’ve ever made before, grew my blog email list to over 100,000 people and published a best-selling book. So why at the end of the year did I still feel like I was missing something?
This is the time of year when many a self-help guru would like to sell you some dream of “getting what you want” or “creating your best life now.” And don’t get me wrong. Those sound like great things. I want them for myself. But as someone who wrote down a bunch of goals last New Year’s and basically accomplished them all, I can tell you: it’s not as thrilling as you might think.
Why is this? I think there are a few reasons.
We humans are notoriously bad at understanding what will actually satisfy us.
That’s what the present is. It’s a little unsatisfying, because life is a little unsatisfying.
—Gil, Midnight in Paris
Nobody believes that becoming rich will make you happy, but as Zig Ziglar once remarked, we all want to find out for ourselves.
Something I’ve found to be very important is understanding that happiness is a byproduct of purpose. So if you chase happiness, you won’t find it. But if you chase purpose, you’ll find happiness.
The work of Viktor Frankl illustrates this in his best-selling book Man’s Search for Meaning in which he shares that what human beings need more than pleasure is meaning. But how do we go about this? Find a project, Frankl says, something to work on. It doesn’t have to be your passion, just something that requires your dedication and is a challenge you must overcome.
Having some kind of ability to meet the challenge is important, but it can’t be too easy. When we embrace this tension between competency and challenge we find ourselves in what’s called a state of “flow”, which, according to another notable psychologist named Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, is the secret to happiness.
So after reaching the same goals again doing more of the same things I’ve done for the past four years, what I realized is I’m bored. It’s time for a new challenge, time to try something that might not work.
The journey is the destination.
Roads? Where were going we won’t need roads.
—Doc, Back to the Future
The thrill of a goal is setting it, not accomplishing it. The satisfaction of running a marathon is the training, not the race. The enjoyment of starting a business is building it, not selling it.
When Steve Jobs left Apple, he had $100 million to his name. He never had to work another day in his life, if he didn’t want to.
So what did he do?
He sunk half his life’s fortune into a little animation studio called Pixar. And when this big bet paid off, making him a millionaire, he didn’t stop there, either. He launched another computer company called NeXt that failed but was bought back by the company that fired him. And the rest, as they say, is history.
What do we call this? Workaholism? Maybe. But it just might mean that in spite of what we want to believe about our vocations, work is really a good thing — something we need to make sense of our lives.
And if that’s true, then one of the best things we could do is not squander how we spend our working lives, making sure we always have the next thing to work on, never growing too content with any single success, and never despairing too much of any single failure.
So much satisfaction lies in our pursuit of a thing, not the thing itself. And yet if we don’t have those small but significant “arrival” moments in life, we struggle to make sense of the rest of the journey. We need milestones and achievements to remind us we’re making progress. But we also need to remember it’s a long road we walk and that the process, not the individual success, is what make it fun.
So I will celebrate my accomplishments from the past year but not coast on them. I’m already bored with what I’ve done and want to do something else that requires more than just more of the same. For me, that means focusing on better work not just more of the same accomplishments. I want to grow in my craft.
Only you can decide when you get to be happy.
How much is enough? Just a little more than you already have.
—John D. Rockefeller
Until recently my goal every year was to double my income, increase my influence, and simply do more of the same things I’d already done. But this year I started to question why. What was the point of all this? Was I growing just for the sake of growing?
Not long ago, I had lunch with a business owner who has intentionally not grown his business in eight years.
“Why? Don’t you ever want more?” I asked over sushi.
“More? No. Not more but better. I want to do better work.”
“Not more, but better” has been a mantra ringing in my ears ever since that meeting. Just after that, I went on a personal retreat in the mountains of Colorado, and I couldn’t get that voice out of my head. As I started to ask for critical feedback from friends, family, and mentors, the same message resonated.
My goal for 2016 is not more, but better. To do better work. To have deeper relationships. To make more of an impact with the money, resources, and possessions I already have.
And maybe, just maybe, this is what you need, too. I’m not assuming it is, but I also know that if one of us is lost in the woods, looking for a way out, then there may be others who stumble along their way, as well.
This is for my fellow stumblers:
We must stop this endless search for more and realize that we already have more than we need to make the impact we want. You have enough money. You have enough influence. You have enough skill.
Now, do something with it.
And remember, the secret is not more, but better.
I’m launching a Cash Practice Pilot Course for therapists interested in starting their own private practice on January 13th 2016.
The course promises to help students build a solid business foundation that will take students from a practice idea to seeing their first patient. I’m limiting the class to 15 students because I will provide one-on-one coaching to help students do whatever it takes to launch their own practice pilot clinic.
The Pilot Course will start on January 13, 2016. There are still a few open spots for new students.
If you’re interested please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and type Pilot Signup in the subject line. I’ll arrange phone call so I can answer your questions about the pilot course.
You all are amazing people and you are doing some pretty amazing things. Keep it up. I hope to inspire, encourage and provide you quality information so that you can continue to make a difference in your part of the universe.
Get Your Own Copy of On Fire
As therapists we have tremendous opportunity to use our abilites, education and expertise to enhance client’s lives. What a privilege? If your are in the therapy business to serve people, then my new book On Fire: Ignite Your Passion with a Cash Therapy Practice might help you. The healthcare industry has undergone so many changes lately and many therapists are overwhelmed, overworked and confused on where to turn to for help in the battle.
On Fire takes a close look at innovative therapists who are using alternative ways to deliver high-value care to their patients. Cash therapy services have emerged as a viable alternative to accepting business as usual.
If you are intrigued by the attention that cash-based practices are attracting On Fire is a great primer to help you get up to speed on the key issues and how if might impact your practice. The book is available on Amazon. If you are interested in getting your own copy join my email list and I’ll keep you up to date on the special pre-order bonuses I’m giving away.
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