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Soundview Executive Book SummariesThe most important quality you can develop for lifelong success is the habit of taking action on your plans, goals, ideas and insights. In Goals!, renown business strategist and motivation expert Brian Tracy provides you with the essential steps for setting and achieving goals, and for living a successful professional and personal life as a result. By practicing these rules and principles, you can accomplish more in a shorter period of time than you ever thought possible!
In Goals!,Tracy teaches you how to identify in clearest terms the things you want out of life, then how to make the plan to help you achieve those things. He covers the psychology and even the physiology at work behind the goals we set for ourselves, and teaches how to combat frustration and elongate the elation that accompany the work you must do to reach your goals. Tracy also shows how goal achievement can be a process one can use again and again, to reach ever-higher levels of success and happiness.
Success is goals; all else is commentary. All successful people are intensely goal-oriented. They possess the master skill of success — the ability to identify what they want, make a plan to attain it, and use the full scope of their personal power to achieve their dreams.
Consider this — in his book What They Don't Teach You in the Harvard Business School, Mark McCormack tells of a study conducted on students in the 1979 Harvard MBA program. In that year, the students were asked, "Have you set clear, written goals for your future and made plans to accomplish them?" Only three percent of the graduates had written goals and plans; 13 percent had goals, but they were not in writing; and a whopping 84 percent had no specific goals at all.
Ten years later, the members of the class were interviewed again, and the findings, while somewhat predictable, were nonetheless astonishing. The 13 percent of the class who had goals were earning, on average, twice as much as the 84 percent who had no goals at all. And what of the three percent who had clear, written goals? They were earning, on average, ten times as much as the other 97 percent put together.
In spite of such proof of success, most people don't have clear, measurable, time-bounded goals that they work toward. There are four reasons why people don't set goals:
- They don't realize the importance of goals. If the people with whom you spend the most time — family, friends, colleagues, and so forth — are not clear and committed to goals, chances are you will not be, either.
- They don't know how to set goals. Some set goals that are too general. These are, in actuality, fantasies common to everyone. Goals, on the other hand, are clear, written, specific, and measurable.
- They fear failure. Failure hurts, but it is often necessary to experience failure in order to achieve the greatest success. Do not unconsciously sabotage yourself by not setting any goals in which you might fail.
- They fear rejection. People are often afraid that if they are unsuccessful at achieving a goal, others will be critical of them. This is remedied by keeping your goals to yourself at the outset; let others see your results and achievements once you've accomplished your goals.
Make a habit of daily goal setting and achieving, for the rest of your life. Focus on the things you want, rather than the things you don't want. Resolve to be a goal-seeking organism, moving unerringly toward the things that are important to you.
Most people don't take charge and set clear goals for their lives because they are dragged down by negative emotions.
Negative emotions hold you back, and take away all the joy in your life. You must free yourself from such negativity — fear, self-pity, jealousy, anger, and other pessimistic, ultimately harmful emotional reactions if you are going to fulfill your full potential. Start by identifying in your life one or more of the sources of negative emotions. These sources include:
- Justification. As soon as you stop justifying and giving reasons why you're entitled to be angry, your anger and your negative emotions disappear.
- Rationalization. Stop rationalizing your negative emotions, especially the events that cause you to feel negative.
- Hypersensitivity. Remember that what other people think of you has no effect on you at all, unless you allow it to have an effect.
- The Blame Game. You are not a victim. Only when you accept full responsibility for your life can you start to set goals and move ahead rapidly.
The very core of your personality is your values; everything you do on the outside emanates from the values you have on the inside.
Think of your personality as a target with five concentric rings. The very center ring is your values-the core of your personality. Your values determine the next ring, your beliefs, about yourself and the world around you. If you have positive values, you will believe others are deserving of those values, and you will treat them accordingly.
Your beliefs, in turn, determine the next ring out — your expectations. If you have positive values, you will believe yourself to be a good person; if this is the case, you will expect good things to happen to you, resulting in a positive, cheerful outlook.
Your expectations determine the next ring, your attitude — the outward manifestation or reflection of your values, beliefs, and expectations. If you have a positive attitude, others will be drawn to you, and you will be more likely to find success.
Your attitude determines the fifth ring, your actions. You are happiest when your outside actions are congruent with your values on the inside. You always demonstrate your true values in your actions, particularly your actions under pressure. When you are forced to choose between one behavior and another, you will always act consistent with what is most important and valuable to you in that moment.
Perhaps the most important of all values is integrity. Someone once said that integrity is not so much a value in itself; it is, rather, the value that guarantees all other values. Once you have decided you are going to live consistent with a value, your level of integrity determines whether you follow through on your commitment. The higher your level of integrity, the happier and more powerful you will feel in everything you do.
Each time you move forward in the face of adversity and disappointment, you build up a habit of persistence. You become stronger, prouder, more powerful; you deepen your levels of self-discipline and personal strength. You develop the iron quality of success, the one quality that will carry you forward and over any obstacle life throws in your path. Copyright © 2003 Soundview Executive Book Summaries