March 07, 2011
I read an outstanding post from a DC user today titled "Why Your Goals Probably Suck". It discusses the difference between results and process in goal-setting and goal-achieving. Very thoughtful and well written. Click the link below to check out the thread, which in turn is cross-posted from the user's blog.
Here was my afterthought and contribution to the thread:
"A personal example from bowling comes to mind:
One of the things I haven't done yet as a competitive bowler is scored an 800 series (meaning a total of 800+ for three games in one night of league/tournament). Some argue that it's tougher to do than a 300 game. I once tried to set it as my "goal" that I would roll an 800 in the next two years. I jokingly referred to this in conversation with a fellow bowler, who plays in the PBA, and his response was friendly yet strong and resonant. He said: "You can't set a goal for that; it just happens. If you make it a goal, you'll never do it."
Making it a goal to bowl an 800 series is like making it a goal to get all-in six times in a row as a favorite and hold up. Similarly, it can be like wanting to win $X in a certain span of time. Some day, those things will happen. When you put the results first, you lose the process. Not only is the process what gets you there, it's the part that's the most fun."
Unfortunately, I haven't bowled an 800 series yet, because this story took place a few months ago. :P