March 14, 2009

Moving Towards vs Moving Away Goals

Goals can be broken down into two categories - those that you set to move towards something and those that you set to move away from something. Often it is just in the envisioning of the goal and then the phrasing.

Example of a moving away from goal:
I need to lose twenty pounds so that I don't have a heart attack.

This may be true but it certainly is a negative motivation. You need to lose the 20 pounds so that you don't suffer. Perhaps your doctor told you that you have to set this goal - it is deal or no deal. Can you think about what the benefits will be for achieving this goal - other than not having a heart attack?

Example of a moving towards goal:
I want to climb that hill and reach the top feeling refreshed, invigorated and ready to take photos of the amazing view. My intention is to do this on the first day of summer.

Using the GROW3 model (Goal, Reality, Options, What, When, Where) you would then explore how you would reach that goal.

G = Goal - stated above
R = Reality - Climbing that mountain at this point would be very physically challenging and I would not reach the top ready to take photos and enjoy the view.
O= Options - I could start practicing by walking every day. Then I could start making short ascents up the path. I could begin taking photos more often in preparation for the experience I have at the top.
W = When, What, Where - I am going to start this weekend by walking around the neighborhood at twilight on Sunday which is my favorite time of day. Next week I am going to do this walk twice and on the third day take my camera and get some photos of spring flowers...

How much more inspiring is the second goal? Plus, using grow allows you to break it down into manageable parts. Losing 20 pounds is daunting. Doing something inspirational is motivating!