U – Unclear

Hey John. Hey! What do you want to do with your life? Um… Eat Doritos for sure. Beyond that.. am I a millionaire in this fantasy or…  I guess ultimately I want to make a difference and inspire people. Nice! How will you do that? What do you mean? I’ll Just Do It. That’s a Nike slogan John. And a damn good one. So.. that’s all you got?

I wish the above was some funny fiction but I can’t tell you how many times in my life I’ve used the, “make a difference and inspire people,” line to articulate my life goals with little follow through. It turns out, it’s pretty easy to do this kind of thing when asked.

Today we are continuing our series on STUPID goals. How do you know if your goal is stupid? It’s Superficial. It’s Trending. And today… It’s Unclear.

How about you? What do you want to do with your life?

  • Make good money.
  • See the world.
  • Create art.
  • Start a business.
  • Revolutionize my industry
  • Be successful.
  • Raise a family.

These are all great things!! Inspiring things!! Just a few follow up questions. Who? What? When? Where? Why? How? Once you’ve answered all of these, you’re probably ready to begin making some SMARTER goals based on those answers.

Just to be nice, I’m going to take you through this process. Don’t mention it. Let’s say you want to.. Start a Business. Here are some basic questions you should be asking before spending a dime. Your answers will naturally lead to even more questions.

Who?  Are you starting this business? You and someone else? Are you married in this scenario? Who are your clients? (People with money is not an answer.) Who is funding this startup? You? Your Parents? Bank? Investors?

What?  What do you need to start this business? Equipment? Office space? Money?  What do you need to launch? What is your product? What are you selling?

When?  When will you launch? 6 months from now? 1 year from now? Next week? When will you be ready to launch?

Where?  Where will you find the time and money for this? Where will you run this business? Home? Office? Neighbourhood coffee shop? Where’s the geographical area your business serves?

Why?  Why do you want to start this business? Personal fulfillment? Increased wealth? Promote your values? Provide a need? All the above?

How?  How will you know you have been successful? Revenues? Profit? Number of clients? Increased growth? Media coverage? Awards? Online engagement and reviews? Personal fulfillment? How will you get the message out about your product? Newspaper ads? Online advertising? Radio? TV? Word of Mouth? Osmosis?

Once you’ve taken the time to go through this lengthy process (there are no short cuts to reaching your goals) you’ll likely discover some important things about yourself.

  1. You didn’t go through this process because you realized you don’t actually want to do this particular thing with your life.
  2. That thing you thought you always wanted to do was actually something others expected you to do.
  3. You still know what you want to do AND now you know it’s doable. Woo!

So… now kinda know what you want to do with your life and you’re confident it is doable. Awesome! It’s time you began making some SMART goals to turn your dreams into reality and start living the life you want! While making your smart goals, you’ll likely discover you need more info, more help and more expertise. It’s all part of the process. But at least now you have clarity.



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