7 Steps to Mindfully Manifest Your Goals
From the Author of the Book "Wise mind, Open mind"
Step #1: Getting Started -- Creating a Realistic Vision
As much as I like to encourage people to dream, and I believe the can-do spirit can carry them a long way, we all must accept certain realities. Creating a realistic goal based on your vision requires learning more about what it typically takes for someone to reach that goal and being honest with yourself about how devoted you are to reaching it. Even a goal that's as simple as achieving balance in your life requires self-inquiry and self-honesty. You have to explore what would constitute balance for you, what skills you'd need to create that balance, and how you might acquire those skills. Ask yourself, "Do I really have the commitment and resources to follow through, or will I easily give up and slip back into the old ways?"
Step #2: Design, Research and Self-Inquiry Stage
Any plan or vision requires research if you want to make it a reality. We've all known people who made a major move too quickly, without thinking through the details, because they were so eager to meet their goals. It's easier now than ever to gather information, yet with so many facts and opinions available, it can be very difficult to sort through it all without going into information overload. You might choose to check a specific, limited number of resources, for instance, reading three books on a topic you know you need to learn more about, or interviewing five people who've successfully made the transition you seek to make. When you recognize the same themes coming up repeatedly, you'll know you have a handle on the basics and can scale back your research.
Step #3: What Financial and Other Resources Do You Need?
Quite often, my clients begin the process of envisioning their goals by insisting that they need more money. If you feel this way, explore this idea mindfully. What does "more money" represent to you? Is money the resource you most need, or do you have an even greater need for creativity, flexibility, knowledge, courage, passion, or something else? Instead of assuming that money is your golden ticket to a fulfilling life, think about how you can increase the number and range of opportunities available to you. Too often, I've seen people direct their efforts into making more money, only to be disillusioned when it doesn't make them feel any happier.
Step #4: Learning by Example
Learning about how people have overcome obstacles and achieved success can help you identify the elements in their winning formulas, but then you must apply their insights and advice to your own life. By remaining creatively toned and in touch with the passions of your core self, you'll find it much easier to see the possibilities for using what they've learned to construct your own winning formula.
Step #5: Tolerating the Learning Curve
Overall, I believe that most people are lulled into thinking that they have more expertise, more mastery, than they actually possess, because they want to avoid the pain of having to face the unknown and start at the beginning of a learning curve. When we open ourselves up to the possibility that we have to go back to beginner's mind, we open ourselves up to a personal transformation that may take great effort and be very frustrating, but ultimately turns out to be very rewarding, because it can lead to the most brilliant breakthroughs.
Step #6: Working With a Vision Board or Visual Reminders
Once you know what to do, and what your steps should be, visual reminders may help keep you on track. You might want to work with a vision board you create on your computer with the drawing function in your word-processing program or with specialized visual-thinking software such as Inspiration Software. You might want to work with a dry-erase board, doodling and writing on it, and altering its content at will. It may also help to place visual reminders anyplace where you might stop in the course of your day and meditate for a minute on what this note or symbol means for you.
Step #7: Assessing Your Progress and Assistance from Your Council of Support
Figuring out how long it should take to reach your goals can be difficult and can generate anxiety or worry. When you look at your goals and your checklist for manifesting your vision, you may find that your progress isn't as steady or as spectacular as you'd hoped. Instead mindfully focus on the progress you've made not on how far you have to go. In my book,Wise Mind, Open Mind I have a chapter titled the Council of Support. In moving our vision forward we all hit hidden resistance and hindrances and with a council of support we can seek out expert advice and wise council to assist us in moving our action plan forward to create our vision.
Your journey to manifesting your goals can be one of self discovery and embracing new ideas that can transform your life in ways you never dreamed possible. What are you waiting for? There has never been a better time to take that first step.