In our last +1, we continued our discussion about what to do when you’re going 0 for 12 in life and discussed the importance of doing that ONE thing that is most important RIGHT NOW.
Then, because I can’t go longer than a few +1s without referencing my tattoo that serves as the one-word summation of my entire philosophy, we brought my right forearm into the discussion and celebrated the ancient word ARETE.
(Cue Maui from Moana’s “You’re welcome!” for the incessant repetition. 🤣 )
Today I want to chat about YET ANOTHER way to win that ultimate game of life—closing the gap between who you’re CAPABLE of being and who you’re ACTUALLY being RIGHT.THIS.SECOND!
It’s time to chat about Targeted Thinking. (Again.)
Since our last chat, I’ve refined my thinking on it. Here’s how I currently practice and teach it. (See Basic Training Objective 2, Lesson 5 for more!)
Step 1 of Targeted Thinking is to step out of Victimland and take a step into Heroicland by asking ourselves a simple question: WHAT DO I WANT?
Note: Victims complain about what’s not working in their lives. Creators create what they want in their lives by asking THAT question. (See The Power of TED* for more.)
Then, once you’ve gotten even an inkling of clarity on what you want in any given moment, the follow-up question is simple: NOW WHAT NEEDS TO GET DONE?
Today I want to hone our practice by adding a few more steps to the Targeted Thinking protocol.
Yes, knowing what you want is ESSENTIAL to the process of living Heroically and creating a better life. And, of course, taking action in pursuit of creating that ideal, is also essential.
Before we even get to asking ourselves what we want, I think we need to step back an inch or three and ACCEPT REALITY EXACTLY AS IT IS.
This is what Byron Katie describes as “Loving What Is.” Which, as we’ve discussed, is just a modern take on the ancient Stoic practice known as “The Art of Acquiescence.” (See the +1 on Suffering = Pain x Resistance and the +1 on Deo Volente + Thy Will Be Done for more.)
Step 0 with our updated Targeted Thinking protocol is simple: Acceptance—complete and utter acceptance of EXACTLY what is happening right now. Period.
That, of course, is much easier said than done but the wisest among us get the power of this practice.
Once we’ve stopped arguing with reality (reminding ourselves that we will ALWAYS lose when we argue with reality!) we are ready for the first step in our protocol.
Step 1. Asking ourselves: WHAT DO I WANT?
Feeling energetically sluggish? Unproductive or lacking purpose at work? Disconnected from yourself and/or your loved ones?
Perfect. Accept that.
Now… What do you want?
To feel Heroically Energized? Heroically (and Purposefully) Productive? Heroically Connected?
Awesome. Spend THREE SECONDS (!) getting a little more clarity on that.
Note: We’re not talking about a 3 months worth of 30-minute journaling sessions to get clarity.
SPEND THREE SECONDS RIGHT IN THE MOMENT YOU FEEL WOBBLY THINKING ABOUT WHAT YOU WANT.
Got it? Awesome. That’s Step 1.
Step 2. Ask yourself: What can I do RIGHT NOW that would take me one step closer to getting more of what I want?
AGAIN: We don’t need a 101-page polished strategic plan you’re going to submit to some higher authority for a grade here.
SPEND THREE SECONDS RIGHT IN THE MOMENT YOU FEEL WOBBLY THINKING ABOUT WHAT YOU CAN DO RIGHT NOW TO GET MORE OF WHAT YOU JUST DECIDED YOU WANT.
Got it? Awesome. That’s Step 2.
Now we’re ready for Step 3.
This is, unquestionably, the most important of all the steps but it’s useless unless you do the first ones.
Here it is…
Step 3. TAKE ACTION.
SPEND THREE SECONDS GETTING INTO ACTION DOING THE THING YOU DECIDED YOU NEED TO DO TO GET MORE OF WHAT YOU JUST DECIDED YOU WANT.
(Yes, that’s a lot of ALL CAPS. 🤣 )
Step 0. Accept your current reality.
Step 1. Create a Target of what you want.
Step 2. Decide what you can do RIGHT NOW to move in the direction of your desired outcome.
Step 3. Take action.
+1. REPEAT that process.
All day. Every day.
ESPECIALLY TODAY, Hero.
Day 1. All in. Let’s go!
+0. +1. +2. +3. +1.