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Business Unplugged™
This blog features Carol Roth's tough love on business and entrepreneurship, as well as insights from Carol's community of contributors.

Where Are You Going and Why?

Written By: Ben Baker | Comments Off on Where Are You Going and Why?

Dr. Henry Kissinger said, “If you do not know where you are going, every road will get you nowhere.”

My hope is you have one eye on the future, and you have plans, goals, and aspirations. Each one of us needs to have a vision of our future, but the problem is most people do not have a solid plan for how they are going to get there – or why they want to get there.

There are as many goals out there as there are people.

Some people want to be recognized as part of the 30 under 30 lists, make millions of dollars, be captains of industry, or be famous. Others have much simpler goals.

However, no matter what your goals are, very few of us have a step-by-step plan of how we are going to achieve them, or truly understand why those goals are individually important in the first place.

Let’s start with the why before we move onto the what and how.

Too many of us see the accomplishments, or perceived accomplishments, of others and feel our lives pale in comparison because we have not achieved the visible highlight reel of someone else’s life.

We see their achievements, but rarely the hard work, failure, rebirth, and motivations that go along with it.

Every person needs to reach for their own goals and not the goals of someone else. We need to understand not only what we want, but why we want it.

Having millions of dollars means nothing unless you have a goal for what you will do with the money. Having a fancy house or car merely so that others can be jealous of your accomplishments might feel pretty hollow after a while.

There is nothing wrong with having money, nice houses, cars, and other things; the question is: what do those things mean to you? Is it the reward for years of sacrifice? Is it the appreciation of beautiful things? Is it wanting to have money to change other people’s lives?

Maybe yes, maybe no, the decision is yours. However, without the right motivation, the chance of achieving your goals diminishes dramatically.

Once you understand what your goals are and why you want this, you need to know how you will accomplish them.

There is no better place to start than understanding where you are today. How can you ever fully understand if you have achieved your goals if you do not have a relative “line in the sand” to mark your progress against?

Remember, this progress will sometimes be slow, arduous, and painful, and being able to see progress from your starting point, no matter how small, can be the motivation you need to continue moving forward.

Beyond that, knowing where you are today enables you to understand where the gaps are between today and the accomplishment of your goal.

  • What is the chasm you need to cross?
  • What are the skills, knowledge, and beliefs you need to augment or change to get from here to there?
  • Who are the people you need to align yourself with as teachers, mentors, and coaches to provide you with the opportunity and ability to move forward?
  • What do you need to be willing to sacrifice to achieve your goals?
  • Who are the essential people in your life, who you cannot live without on the other side, and need to make sure they are with you in the end?

Dr. Henry Kissinger was correct, without a plan to get there, you will never arrive.

However, without a real sense of self, understanding what is important to you and why, and developing goals that are relevant to you, you may be sorely disappointed with where you end up.

Start by asking the question, “What is important to me and why?”

The answers may take you in a completely different and better direction than you are currently heading.

Here is wishing everyone health, safety, and long-term success.

Connect with Ben HERE to discuss how to provide your people with the skills and mindset they need to lead teams effectively into the new normal.

Article written by
Ben Baker is a communications strategist, the storyteller of your brand and the author of “Powerful Personal Brands.” He believes that every brand needs to stop acting like a commodity and instead be a brand worth loving. You can contact him at www.yourbrandmarketing.com.