A Whole New Way of Thinking About Goals, part one

Today’s blog is excerpted from my newest book, a completely revised and updated 10th anniversary edition of Supercoach: 10 Secrets to Transform Anyone’s Life.

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One of the questions I will often ask my goal‐seeking clients is this:

On a scale from 0 percent to 100 percent, how much say do you think you have in how things turn out?

While the answers vary greatly, most people wind up seeing that they’re less in control than they thought, but more in control than they feared. Or as I like to put it:

It’s not up to you – but it’s not not up to you.

And that leads to an interesting question:

How do we create in a world where we are not in control?Click To Tweet

If we think we are the predominant creative force in the universe, the power of our will is the force we must harness to create what we want to see in the world. But if the predominant creative force in the universe is the universe itself, then it is in our relationship with that force that we find the power to influence creation.

In that sense, all acts of initiative and creation are actually co‐creations. And whether ‘God is our co‐pilot’ or we are the co‐pilot to the gods, understanding that it’s not up to us but it’s not not up to us is a pivotal piece of the puzzle.

In this co‐created universe, clarity of intention becomes our primary tool in the game of creation. Simply put when we’re really clear about what we’re up to, the universe has a way of moving the pieces around behind the scenes to make the impossible possible.

But what’s to stop us from attempting to use intention as a tool of volition?

Nothing but the fact that it doesn’t seem to work anywhere near as well. Telling yourself that you intend to create something you don’t really want to create is as ineffective and self‐defeating as attempting to commit to it and use discipline and willpower to follow through and make things happen. In this sense, intention is something we uncover, not something we create.

The power of intention is already at work in the daily creation of your life. It’s just that much of that intention is unconscious and often conflicting. For example, many years ago one of my coaches pointed out to me that I had an apparently unconscious intention to fly under the radar. She pointed to the years of coaching and teaching I had managed to do with thousands of people without anyone who hadn’t worked with me directly having any idea of who I was.

Attempting to assert my will over the situation, I declared my intention to fly ‘over the radar,’ not quite seeing that that would still be off the radar of the vast majority of humanity. So, not knowing what to do, I did what I know to do when I don’t know what to do: I just sat with it. All sorts of thoughts came to light, ranging from If I become known, people will see that I’m a fraud to If I become famous, I’ll wind up doing drugs and cheating on my wife.

Then one day, quite by chance, I was sitting in my car outside a friend’s apartment in Hollywood when a beautiful woman started walking down the street toward me stripping off her clothes. When my lower jaw rehinged and I was able to regain my senses, I realized I was in the midst of a guerilla‐style porno shoot, and that the woman wasn’t actually walking toward me, she was walking towards a camera crew that was standing in the middle of the street behind where I was parked.

Something about the absurdity of the situation popped me out of my habitual thinking, and I realized two things in quick succession. First, I don’t particularly enjoy drugs and I don’t ever want to cheat on my wife. Second, being at least willing to become better known was an essential part of any business growth strategy I could think of.

At that moment, my thinking clarified itself and becoming more of a public figure went from a ‘good idea/bad idea’ conundrum to a clear, clean, and simple intention. Within a week, I had received and accepted a teaching offer that put me in front of tens of thousands of people over the next few years and led directly to my first book deal.

Coincidence? Yes, but as we’ll explore in a moment, coincidences and ‘happy accidents’ are reliable occurrences on the journey to success.

Time to reflect

Have a look for yourself and see where in your life you are trying to make things happen through force of will as opposed to harnessing (or being harnessed by) the inner creative forces of innate intelligence and unlimited thought.

If your life as it is today were a product of your intentions, conscious and unconscious, what intentions would be revealed?

With all my love,

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