Study Habits - Go Through The Process To Quickly Achieve Your Goal

By Lachlan Haynes

     Simple question: Do you know what you are trying to achieve (in your education or just in life in general) - and why? Really think about that question. It's more important that anything. If you don't understand what you're trying to achieve or why you're trying to achieve it then you have absolutely no hope of getting there. Why? Well where are you trying to get to anyway? You haven't even defined it remember! So step one is to create a goal want to achieve and a goal you actually understand.

     Once you have established the "what" and the "why", you can move to the next step - the "who". As in, who do you need to be to make sure that goal happens? What sort of actions do you need to take? How will you know if you are really on track or if you are just kidding yourself? Are you becoming the person you need to become to achieve the goal? Or are you just hoping that you can be exactly as you are now and still achieve the goal?

     In other words, do you improve yourself each day in order to become the person you need to be in order to achieve the goal you want to achieve - or do you change nothing and do nothing and just hope everything will somehow work out for the best? Remember, be honest!

     As people, we love to focus on events - not the process. What do I mean by that? Well, we love to step on the scales and see that we are four pounds lighter than we were last week - we don't love the training and the dieting! Do we? We love to watch and experience the Super Bowl, we don't love to watch the hours of practise and drills the players go through to perfect their on-field systems which allows them to make it to the big game. We love events - not processes.

     The same goes for our education. We all want to be smart and learned (I hope!) But going through each grade and passing each test and handing in each assignment and doing all our homework and getting good grades is really hard work.

     Passing school is hard and getting good grades is even harder. But the rewards (i.e. events) along the way, such as getting a positive report card, serve to reinforce the desire and attitude required to go through the process to see the ultimate event happen. It's survival of the fittest. When events don't happen, or the event seems too far away and out of each, the process becomes too much to handle.

     This is a significant distinction in terms of goal setting and goal achievement. Keeping in mind that because we love events and not processes, it stands to reason that we will struggle to achieve the goals we set for ourselves. Why? Well we don't want to go through the hard yards to make it happen. We just want the event - the goal being achieved! Make sense doesn't it?

     So, if you are going to set a goal, you really need to understand what process you are going to have to go through to achieve it and make sure you are committed to it. The event is secondary; the process is what you are really committing yourself to. You must ask yourself, "What actions will I have to take every day to go through the process? Who will I need to be to go through the process?" If you can't answer that, you won't be able to achieve the goal you have set.

     Goals don't just happen. They are clearly defined and then deliberately worked towards. You create an event (an A+ in Maths) and then you have to go through the process to get there. Focus on the process and the event will happen. Focus on the event (like everyone wants to) and nothing will happen. The choice is yours!

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