If you are reading this, you probably have high aspirations.  There is a fire burning inside of you.  You wish to unlock your potential, you want to make an impact but you don’t know where to start.

A sense of urgency goes a long way, however, do not let urgency become impatience.  Depending on the goals you will set, some might take years.

Your goals will vary depending upon your motivation.  People are motivated by a variety of things.  For the purpose of this blog post, I have summarized them into the following:

  • Security – the destination our goals can take us can be powerfully motivated by security.  A friend of mine is pursuing a Degree in Computer Science.  While he has no passion for Software Engineering, he is motivated knowing coding is a booming industry.  The security a technical skill set provides has motivated him to do very well in his studies.
  • Money – this is a deciding factor for many people.  No, you do not have to feel bad about it.  After all, money is how we provide.  For many, money is a stepping stone to fulfilling a passion.  Regardless of how you perceive it, one cannot deny how powerful a motivator money is.
  • Image – as human beings, whether or not we are honest about it, we long for acceptance. We might seek the prestige of being seen as a successful individual.  Image includes reputation.  Reputation can lend authority and power to a person’s name because of their accomplishments.
  • Passion – while passion lends great power to the other motivators, passion can itself be the motivator.  A friend of mine is a Chef, in a conversation I wrongly assumed he cooked to enjoy the reactions of his customers.  “I don’t cook for them,” he said, “I cook because I love to cook.”  His passion for cooking has made him quite successful, but it was never the money, image, or challenge that motivated him.  It was pure passion.
  • Curiosity – if passion is the key ingredient to effectiveness, curiosity is the fuel to learning.  Individuals motivated by curiosity have an insatiable hunger to acquire knowledge and explore the end result.  Often, curiosity should be paired with another motivator to ensure the individual does not burn out or get bored once they feel they have a general understanding of a topic.
  • Challenge – I had the opportunity to speak with a 74 year old who had run a marathon the week before I met him.  I marveled that someone at his age could perform such a feat.  He proceeded to tell me his story.  His family had gathered together for family dinner one Sunday evening.  His son was discussing a marathon he wanted to run in the near future.  Joking, his grandson bet him that “he could not run a marathon.”  He began training, motivated by the challenge.  He had never ran a marathon before.  The challenge fueled his motivation to seeing his goal to completion.
  • Achievement – many people are fueled by results.  The results fill us with a sense of accomplishment.  If you are motivated by achievement, chances are you never sit still for very long.  Constantly seeking to progress and check the next item off of their to-do list, these individuals are not to be underestimated.  Many fly under the radar but will astound you with their productivity and dedication.

Why is it important to understand how you are motivated?  Regardless of which type of motivation you adhere to, it is a strength.  You have many strengths.  Many of them have been won by years of practice and tuning.  Others come naturally to you.  We want to use your strengths and preferences to define how you will accomplish your goals.

What is your goal?

Is it writing a book?

Creating an online business?

Getting promoted?

Earning your MBA?

Write it down.  Write it down three times.  Place one on the mirror you use to get ready in the morning.  If you don’t use a mirror, place it where you will see if every morning when you wake up.  Place the second in your car.  Put it in a place you can see it.  Mine is on a sticky note on my tachometer.  If you do not have a car, place it in your wallet.  Place the third in a place you can see it at work.

Why is this important?  Reminding ourselves when we wake up, when we are traveling, and when we are working of our goals fuels the fire of our motivation and pushes us towards our goals.

How do you use your type of motivation?

  • Security – write down what achieving your goal will provide you and your family.
  • Money – write down what you estimate the Return on Investment (ROI) of your goal to be?  As achieving the goal requires time, what is the payout?
  • Image – write down and visualize what accomplishing your goal will do for your image.  What do you look like once you have accomplished the goal?
  • Passion – record what you will obtain by following your passion.  As passion is tied to the emotional, will pursuing your passion increase happiness? Lower stress?
  • Curiosity – write down what questions you will have answered when you accomplish your goal.
  • Challenge – write down what you will have become when you accomplish your goal.  A marathon runner?  A business owner?  An author?
  • Achievement – after checking this goal off of your to-do list, what have you achieved?

Goals of Greatness are not simply fueled by “what” you wish to accomplish.  Rather, Goals of Greatness shape “who” we are going to be when fueled by a sufficient “why.”

Setting the goal is the first step of the transaction in the acquisition to greatness.

What is your goal?

Why you want to accomplish it?

Who will you be when you achieve it?