Goal Setting Seminar with Julie Felsher

Julie Felsher – Crossfitter and life coach – notes from seminar at CrossFit Mercer

Benjamin Elijah Mays said:

The tragedy of life doesn’t lie in not reaching your goal. The tragedy lies in having no goal to reach. It isn’t a calamity to die with dreams unfulfilled, but it is a calamity not to dream. It is not a disaster to be unable to capture your ideal, but it is a disaster to have no ideal to capture. It is not a disgrace not to reach the stars, but it is a disgrace to have no stars to reach for. Not failure, but low aim is sin.

If you have no goals, or if you have goals that are so high, you are set up for failure.

Typical Goals a lot of people have:
I wanna lose weight. I want a new job. Make more money. Fall in love. Get a new house. Get a new car. I wanna “get things.”

But the question for everyone is: Why?

Too often, people put their lives on hold because they are chasing a goal. They are so focused on that, that everything else happening in their lives is disappearing. They are not actually enjoying themselves. They get to a place in life where they think: “It’s been ten years, and I don’t even remember raising my children.”

Julie doesn’t want this to happen to us. So we are going to look at goals in a whole new way.

Would you say to your child: “I will love you when you are skinny.” Or, “if you get straight As, I will love you more.”

Of course not. Never.   So why do you say this to yourself?

There are 5 key points that people want to change in life:

1)   Body: be skinnier, leaner, more muscle, stronger
2)   Finances – more money, better job, bigger house
3)   Relationships – new one or eliminate one
4)   Recreation – what am I doing to have fun? Have more excitement in life.
5)   Personal growth – this industry has exploded in recent years, because they know people are looking for change. All kinds of programs, podcasts, certs, etc.

But people chase these achievements, and they still feel bad.

Motivation and willpower are NOT enough. Motivation and willpower are a fight, and you get tired from fighting and fighting.

We need connection and inspiration. This is what is missing from people when they chase goals. We need to be inspired by our goal(s), and be connected to them.

Less than 46% of adults, who set a New Year’s resolution, are still chasing it in February.

Maryianne Williamson (http://www.marianne.com/ ) author said:

You must learn a new way to think before you can master a new way to be.

So to be successful in this 90 day challenge, we need to change the way we think. Julie wants to leave us with a new way of thinking.

Two things she has discovered in life:
1)   even when you achieve things, you don’t always actually feel better.
2)   people want a feeling of hope when chasing goals.

Before we can understand “Goal Setting 2.0”, we need to revisit 1.0.

Remedial Goal Setting – “1.0”
“SMART Goals” – acronym for:

  • Specific – Details are important so flesh out your goals fully.
  • Measurable – How will you know you are getting there? If your goal is specific enough, it should automatically be measurable
  • Attainable – It has to be something you can get to. If you can’t do any pull-ups now, a goal of 20 unbroken pull-ups is probably not attainable in 90 days.
  • Relevant – Is it important to you, or relevant to your life? You want to feel good about doing something you weren’t able to do before, and CrossFit is great for that because you often finish a workout that you didn’t think you could complete.
  • Timely – How long? 90 days, or 6 months or a year.

The worksheet she shared with us factors all these attributes of goals.

So, this works, 46% of the time. 🙂

Let’s take goal setting to another level.

Goal Setting “2.0”

Think about a goal on your front burner, then close your eyes and visualize how you feel after accomplishing your goal. Who else is there? What do you look like? What are you wearing? What do you hear? How do you feel?

Some adjectives, feeling words you might have thought of:

  • Relaxed
  • Satisfied
  • Proud
  • Confidant
  • Strong
  • Powerful
  • Excited

And what are some words that describe how you feel right now, or when you woke up this morning? When you first committed to doing the 90 day challenge, what were you moving away from?

  • Uninspired
  • Frustrated
  • Tired
  • Sore
  • Annoyed
  • Stagnant
  • Comfortable
  • Stuck
  • Lazy

The road from here (frustrated) to the SMART goals is tough. There are lots of obstacles (in the center).

Uninspired Lots of “stuff” lies between your current place and your target. It is in the way of you getting from the feelings on the left, to your smart goal feelings on the right. How do you break through these obstacles? Relaxed
Frustrated Satisfied
Tired Proud
Annoyed Confidant
Stagnant Strong
Lazy Powerful
Comfortable Excited
Sore Relaxed
Stuck Satisfied

Those obstacles make it really hard to get from the Left to the Right.

So, what we are really after when we are chasing a goal, is a feeling. We want a feeling. We don’t really want to lose 20 pounds or do 20 pullups. We want to feel strong, or proud. We want to feel confident or sexy. We are really chasing a feeling.

But once we work our tails off trying to get there, pushing and fighting, and finally get there, we discover the feeling is not there. This is because we weren’t attached to it along the way. These are false positives.

Talking about goals is just enough to feel like you are doing something, without actually doing something. You share your goals with people, feeling really good, then go on your merry way and eat pizza, or peanut butter, or drink diet coke.

So, that feeling that you want is not something outside. It’s not something six months from now. That feeling you are chasing is in you NOW, since you can visualize it now.

Go through this exercise on your own.
Write down the top 3 feelings you want to feel. Here is one example:

  1. Confident
  2. Accomplished
  3. Happy

Have you felt these feelings before in your life? Next to each feeling, brainstorm and write down all the tiny, tiny things that you do that make you feel that way right now. For instance, maybe you feel confident replying to an email and you know you have the answers for the other person. Or you feel happy every time you leave the gym after a good workout. Or every time you eat a good, healthy meal.

Pay attention to when you feel these feelings, and remember them. They happen every day, so focus on them.

Focusing on these feelings will help clear the path so you can get from the left side of the chart above, to the right. Focus on the positives.

On the goal worksheet, set the goal for a year from now, then pull back and detach from it. We often feel like our goal is this pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. But actually, the goal is the accumulation of single coins you collect along the way. You need to pay attention to these.

Your mind desperately wants you to reach your goal. But if you tell yourself you feel crappy, you will focus on that instead of the positives. People will definitely bug you, and you will definitely feel tired. But if you focus on feeling relaxed, confident, and happy, your mind will focus on noticing more of those things, breaking through all the obstacles to help you reach your goal.

Let’s take a new look at Goal Setting 2.0:

This is GOAL SETTING 2.0. Add the following attributes (+) to the original list:

  • Specific
  • + Sensory – You have to feel this – how do you feel setting a PR, or dropping body fat? You need to practice feeling this more.
  • Measurable
  • + Meaningful – What does it mean to achieve that goal; to feel satisfied, confident, etc? Who else does it affect? Does it affect your children, spouse, friends, your productivity at work? Of course it does.
  • Attainable
  • + Actionable & Attitude – Actionable: You need to know what the steps are. What do you need to do to reach the goal? If you don’t know what to do, find someone to help you. The attitude has to be positive. State your goals in the positive. Not what you want to LOSE – what you want to GAIN.
  • Relevant
  • + Resourceful – You need to find the resources to accomplish your goals. If something is not working then there is a resource missing. You have a gym, a kitchen, and people to talk to. Find an accountability partner.
  • Timely
  • + True – It is easy to get wrapped up in other people’s goals. Make it YOUR goal, not someone else’s. Make it truly important to you.

Motivation and willpower are what push you away from the initial pain, the initial discomfort.  For example, you’re motivated to fix your weight because you are uncomfortable right now. But that only gets you so far. The Connection, Emotion and Inspiration pull you toward your goal.

Find the deep reasons for your goals.


Go to facebook and like http://www.facebook.com/HealthHappy. You can post questions there and Julie will answer them.

Website: sign up for the newsletter at http://www.healthhappy.com. There is a group program starting in first week of April: waking up energetically, waking up to your life.

Gratitude journal – Check in, be present every day.

Notice when you are falling back to your negative feelings. “I’m so sore”, “I’m so tired”, “I’m so frustrated.”  Catch yourself there and notice that, then you’ll be able to move away from it.

Make sure to remember what makes you happy.  Stay “tapped-into” those activities and feelings.

Use a dry-erase marker to write things on your bathroom mirror. But first make sure the dry-erase marker erases from your mirror 🙂

Often you choose to feel bad. You can choose to feel good instead.

Wrap up:

Do the work of writing down your three goal feelings, then recognize when you feel them. Remember them.

Last quote about “Weightlessness” by Astronaut Robert Crippen:

The real pleasure was having the chance to enjoy being weightless, and the other was to spend some time looking out at this beautiful Earth that we’re all lucky to inhabit.

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