By Sarah Alexander
The business success gurus tell us that the only way to “succeed,” is to set clearly defined goals. Having set these goals, they are achieved by focusing unwaveringly on their achievement and taking action, often daily, to achieve those chosen outcomes.
It’s true that the human mind is hugely powerful and if you consistently focus your mind on a chosen business result, there is a possibility that you will achieve a certain outcome. For a few, this approach has brought material success and financial gain, but for most it has led to disappointment, frustration and misery as intended goal after goal has not materialised.
So why is this? Why is goal setting able to ruin your life?
Goals are most often set in the hope that life will be better with the attainment of the goal — we’ll be happier and more fulfilled.
But how many times have we got the new client, the bigger house, the better car only to find that we are still no happier?
So we set an even bigger goal in the hope that this will bring the happiness we crave. In time, goal setting creates an almost never ending cycle of desire as we search for this elusive fulfilment.
When we are intent on creating a certain outcome in our business we can often miss the very thing that would make us happy - we fail to see the opportunity that is right in front of us because it is not what we have chosen to look for.
The reticular activating system of our mind helps us to notice those things that lead us to our chosen focus. It can actually prevent us from noticing other signs and coincidences along our way, signs that are trying to help and guide us.
Furthermore, our logical, rational approach to our goals leaves no room for intuition, inspiration and creativity as we forge ahead on our “chosen route.” And here lies the problem - it is our chosen route and it’s often at odds with what the Universe has mapped out for us.
With this focused approach at no time do we stop and ask what “are the consequences”? For many people that I’ve worked with as a coach, they have lost much that they hold dear as a result of this desire to be “successful”. They’ve lost marriages, relationships, children and friendships, all in the name of goal achievement and success.
So what is the solution? The good news is there’s an alternative approach to your business life and all that it can hold for you.
Within all of us is a sense of inner wisdom that can be used to guide us in our life — including business. It can guide us to achievement, to inspiration, to new ideas and options for our business that we had perhaps not considered. And it can be used to guide us in the creation of our dreams.
And by dreams I mean those ideas that inspire us. They are not goals that we set, but are ideas that well up from inside us, that just come to us and take hold of us. They feel right, they energise us and they are totally in alignment with who we are.
Often all we have to ask is “What is the Universe offering me right now?” “What things are happening naturally in my business at this moment?” It may be that right now there is no action to take - and that’s OK!
This inner wisdom or intuition comes to us as insights, information, knowledge or awareness without any conscious reasoning or logical thought. It generally appears in one of four different ways:
1)For those that are highly visual, guidance will come through visual cues which we either see in our mind’s eye while we are day dreaming or through things we notice in the outside world. For example maybe you’ve been contemplating whether you should do something or not, and then you see that Nike slogan: just do it!
2)For others who are more auditory, it may be things we hear or overhear. People who are extremely perceptive will actually hear a very still, small voice in their head, guiding them in what to do. For others we may hear something on the radio or television that guides us, or we may overhear a conversation or someone may just say something to us which we intuitively know is our guidance. Or it could be a song that is going round and round in your head. It could even be something we hear ourselves saying to others that we “know” is meant for us.
3) For many people, it’s based on their feelings: the kind of gut feeling that says, yes, that is the right thing to do. You just know that this is the action you have to take, and you have no doubts about it whatsoever. There may also be feelings of excitement or even goose pimples on your body when you think about your guidance. Likewise feelings of heaviness or contraction are guidance that we are not in the right situation or with the right people.
4)Lastly for people who are very logical thinkers, intuitive guidance can just pop into our minds and feel like a new idea that is coming to us. It will feel good and empowering and we just “know” it is the right thing to do.
Within our mind, we often have this voice that chatters away to us. That is not the voice we need to be listening to for access to our intuition. Our intuition comes to us with regularity; when we get an intuitive message, it is very, very repetitive. On the other hand, the constant chatter in our head gives us an idea to do something, and then forgets about that idea and gives us another idea. Our intuitive wisdom is always repetitive: do this, do this, do this, until you finally do take that action.
Our intuitive wisdom really does have an intelligence of its own and if we can listen to that higher intelligence, which for some is their innate Spiritual Intelligence, then life takes on an ease.
So, my advice is to stop setting business goals and stop striving to achieve those goals and let your natural instincts guide you in the right direction. You will feel happier, less stressed, and certainly more fulfilled.
About Sarah Alexander
Sarah is an expert in Spiritual Intelligence and has worked with 100s of clients worldwide helping them tap into their intuition and use it make decisions in their lives — both personally and professionally.
Sarah also runs courses and workshops for coaches entitled “Spiritual Intelligence in Coaching” that train existing and potential coaches to work with clients using the principles of Spiritual Intelligence.
Sarah has used Spiritual Intelligence successfully to build her first business which she sold in 2001 and then used it again to build her current business helping clients, including business executives , international sports competitors and entrepreneurs to bring them success.
Sarah’s book “Spiritual Intelligence in Business: the Eight Pillars of 21st Century Business Success” is available from Amazon, all good book retailers and from Sarah’s web site.
For information on Sarah’s coaching and workshops go to: www.sarah-alexander.co.uk