Sidney C. Walker
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January 2014

Tips For Reaching Your 2014 Goals...
by Sidney C. Walker


As a sales performance coach to financial advisors for over 30 years, I have focused greatly on the psychological side of what makes people successful. Goal setting is an area where the psychological side is often overlooked and advisors end up with goals they don't reach. What follows are some tips that can have a big impact on your ability to hit your goals for 2014.

A big barrier is not being able to set goals that have meaning. I hear this consistently from my coaching clients. The secret to setting goals that have meaning is to create a goal with a feeling of some kind. If there is no feeling involved, there is no meaning. I tell my coaching clients to make a list of everything you can imagine you could want or want to create. Then look at the list again for the things that have the most meaning or which ones feeling intuitively right. Examples of goals that have a feeling element would be things like: To achieve whatever it takes for me to feel successful and professional. To provide the best possible lifestyle for my family. To have clients who trust me to put their interests first and feel so strongly about me that they refer me to their friends.

Another huge obstacle is your analytical mind and analytical thinking which we have all been trained to grossly overuse. What you have experienced in the past creates a body of knowledge about what you think is possible. When you are setting goals, you have to suspend your attachment to your experience and create goals like you are just making things up that you want. One of my mentors taught me that you have to go out at least 10 years when you are setting goals. Your analytical mind can't project your current barriers out more than a few years so if feels like there is nothing in the way. Then plan backwards. Most of your ten year goals won't actually take ten years. Some of them could happen this year!

Negativity and doubt in any form is a major cause of not reaching goals. Once you have set a goal that feels right you have to protect that vision from your own negative thoughts. As soon as you feel a negative thought coming on, you have to notice it and not give it any energy. It is way better to be neutral (objective, non-judgmental) than negative.

Set a range for your goals rather than having to come up with one specific target. Rather than agonizing over trying to find the perfect income goal for example, set a range. What is the minimum you need to make everything work and what is the upside you really want to go for. Also, another fascinating fact about goal setting is that you don't have to know how you are going to reach the goal. All of our analytical training makes us think we should only set realistic goals. This is a big mistake. It is more important to ask for a lot more than you currently know how to get. Life has a way of teaching us how to get the bigger goal if we ask for it. In other words, your spirit knows how to achieve goals many times bigger than your analytical mind. Your analytical mind is an important part of the mix but it is a small thinker.

So be more outrageous with your upper end goals. When Alexander Graham Bell was working on the telephone, people would ask him, "Why would anyone want to talk on a telephone?" It's more important to ask for what you really want, what feels right to you; rather than just to ask for what you think you can get or what makes sense. Ask for that too, of course!

One last thought, I would probably not share my big, upper end goals with anyone. They might decide you are a legend in your own mind. Our ability to create is much more powerful than we realize. We have been socialized to limit ourselves to the conventional wisdom. Would Bell have put all his energy into the telephone if he had listened to the conventional wisdom of his time? Can you imagine what our lives would be like without the telephone?

Wishing you great success for 2014,

(424) 228-5575 (Los Angeles, California)



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