The journey counts: Not just the destination
In the context of driving, if I said “Paying attention to the road means you will most likely get to your destination” you would probably reply “well, of course”. With driving we know this. But with habit change we focus on the goal, but often neglect the process.
If you want to change your habits it’s important to have clear goals. Most people understand this. Most people, however, underestimate the importance of paying attention to just how they will get there. Lets look at an example.
Gerry, the determined project manager
Gerry was serious about whatever he put his mind to. After becoming aware just how and how much his smartphone habits affected him, he decided to do something about it. He set out some ambitious goals because he was serious about changing.
His first goal was leave his phone in the kitchen after dinner, and only check it in the morning. Given his past behaviour this was very ambitious. Nevertheless Gerry tried. After failing to do so for five nights out of seven he felt like giving up. Being the fighter that he is, he was not ready to give up.
His intuition told him it wasn’t about pushing harder to get to his goals, he needed to adapt his approach. He reached out for help. He was quick to point out he wanted assistance, not because he believed the goal was unachievable, but because he felt stuck.
When we started looking at the process of how he approached his goal, Gerry realised he needed to build in more steps. It was too ambitious to jump to this goal. He also undertook to record his progress (he is a project manager by profession so knows all about the benefits of tracking progress). Doing this, coupled with our conversations, meant he could try out steps, review them, adapt if necessary, and ultimately work towards his goal.
In aha moment, and with a good dose of his humour he said “I became so busy focusing on the process I almost didn’t see the goal creeping up on me”. After this he became better at balancing his focus between the goal and the process.
Changing your habits is not a “process vs goals question”, it’s a “both and” answer. Paying attention to the process actually helps you get to your goal. Just like with driving, you also need to watch the road, while remembering where you are heading to.
In our online course we guide you through this process, helping you achieve your goals.