Making your goals a reality
Better health, a new house, a fit body and more money in the bank? Did these number among your New Year resolutions on January 1?
If so, have you achieved any of them or are you in the process of doing so? Or, like many of us, did you stumble at the first hurdle and soon forget about your plans for the future?
Dr Mark Atkinson, one of the UK’s leading medical doctors on mind/body medicine who lectured in Galway, says he used to be a great believer in setting goals.
“I had goals for pretty much every aspect of my life - money, relationships, health, work and so on. But despite my enthusiasm and regular visualisation sessions they rarely came true. It took me a lot of time, reading and workshops to find out why. I discovered that the most important factor in being able to achieve one’s goals is the level of consciousness from which the goal was made.”
If the goal is about self glorification or ego or if it involves hurt or harm to another it does not seem to work, he says.
“However, when the goal comes from a place of self-acceptance and gratitude and is infused with emotion and absolute belief, it happens - often in more meaningful ways than expected.”
goals a reality
He offers the following insights to help you achieve your goals;-
A. The goal should be realistic and in alignment with your skills and talents. “It’s all very well having a goal of being the next X-factor winner but if you don’t have the talent so sing and perform then it’s not going to happen.”
B. It should be focused on what you really need rather than what you think you need. When you set your goal ask yourself, “Am I choosing this goal because of some underlying fear, belief or worry?”
C. It should be placed in the background of your awareness. Most people tend to think of a goal and then forget about it. One way to overcome this is to think of it as a picture frame and your day-to-day experiences as the content of the picture, explains Dr Atkinson.
“This allows you to deal with the events of the day without losing sight of your goal. You can also use this to sense whether what you are doing is in alignment with your goal. Does it feel right?”
D. It should be specific, positively stated, challenging, realistic, measurable and time specific. “I want to lose weight” for example, is not a great goal. It is focused on the negative, is non specific and provides no indicator of a time frame. A much better goal would be “I will achieve a weight of 10 stone by October 10.’”
E. The goal should be in harmony with your intuition. “Accessing your intuition - the aspect of you which holds wisdom and insight - is a very useful barometer both in formulating a goal and in helping you decide which actions will help you fulfil that goal. It takes time and practice to access intuition but breathing deeply and noticing subtle insights, thoughts and feelings is a good place to start.”
How to manifest your goals
1. Decide on the specific goal/outcome that you would like (write it down)
2. Ask yourself how desirable and challenging it is. Score between one (not challenging) and 10 (extremely challenging). Your goal should score at least five.
3. Think about your goal, breathe deeply and turn your attention to your body. Do you feel harmony or resistance/conflict? Signs of harmony include a feeling of peace, clarity and being alert, enthusiasm, motivation and being energised.
4. If you feel conflict find out which aspect of your goal is causing this. Look at each part of it and tune into the feedback from your body.
5. Modify and rewrite your goal until you feel signs of harmony (write down your new goal).
6. “Now, close your eyes, breathe deeply and create a movie of what your life would look like and how you would feel once this goal has been accomplished. Give yourself plenty of time to do this. It is important that you experience yourself as the person in the movie.
7. “Now turn your attention to the past. Try to identify a moment or experience from the past when you successfully completed a goal. Relive it and allow yourself to become energised by it. When you feel that energy running through, let go of the old memory and animate your new movie with this energy. Infuse it with life and make it as real as possible.”
8. Repeat this process three more times. You will know when it it complete because when you think of your goal you will see and feel it as an energised reality.
9. “Once you have completed this process my advice is to tune into it for at least a couple of seconds at the start of each day. This will help you refocus and keep on track. If you start to experience signs of resistance use this as an opportunity to ask yourself the question ‘What do I really need?’Life’s experiences can often lead to a change in our values and aspirations so be open to the idea that your goal may, or may not, evolve with time.”