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On the last Tiny Talk, we created our vision for life.  

If you have not done that part, you will want to go back and listen to that first before moving on to the next step, which is brainstorming your goals (Part 3) and then choosing your Big Goal (Part Four). 

In Part One, we reconnected with our values. For Part Two, we created a vision from those values, and now we want to make the goal list that will move us in the direction of that vision so that we can start 2022 living with intention. 

For Part Three, we want to download all the goals we have in our heads, big and small. List out all the things you want to achieve. Don’t filter yourself because next week, we’ll do an edit of those goals. 

Reference your vision for some ideas and just put whatever comes up on paper. Don’t worry about the how during this process. Let yourself write all the things you want to do, accomplish, and experience this year.

What goals and dreams would you be ecstatic to accomplish in 2022 and beyond? What would you do:

  • If you knew you would succeed?
  • If you were not worried about the future?
  • If money was not an issue?
  • If you didn’t care what other people thought?

You can also ask yourself what you no longer want.

Your goals could be related to health, career, lifestyle, relationships, creative pursuits. Write it all down with zero feedback from the critic in your brain. 

You are the only one who matters in this exercise. Don’t say, “Yeah, but….” That’s not allowed in this exercise. You don’t need to justify anything that comes up to anyone, not even yourself. 

I would pause this Tiny Talk and do the exercise before moving on to what I share next. 

Now that that’s done, I’m going to throw you a curveball. I’m going to share the first goal edit so that we can focus on choosing your one Big Goal next week.  

It’s essential to know the difference between a goal and a project. The reason I’m telling you this after you’ve made a big list is that I don’t want you to get hung up on the concept during the goal download exercise. 

So, would you say these are goals or projects?

  • Build a website 
  • Write a new screenplay
  • Finish my rewrite by March 30th
  • Write five treatments by March 30th
  • Learn a new skill by taking a screenwriting class 
  • Create a network of 500 people

All of these are projects. 

What about this one?

  • Write the first draft of a screenplay by July 29th. 

Still a project, albeit more specific.

Reframe it as a goal like this:

  • Write a screenplay that will be ready to market and be optioned by July 20th. 

The statement “Write a new screenplay” is now accountable to something.

The key difference is that goals are accountable to a result. 

Goals, you don’t have as much control over. They are a little more stressful than projects. A football team’s goal is to win the Superbowl. It’s accountable to the result.

Projects go underneath our goals.

With projects, you have a lot more control over the outcomes because they are focused on the resources you apply that determine their completion. I should add that if your projects don’t have a deadline, then you may want to get clear on why you’re doing them. 

Underneath the projects are the actionable processes and tasks required. You have 100% control over these via scheduling, learning a skill, evaluating, and elevating. You are in control of if you sit down to write for two hours every day, and you can control if you show up to practice for the Superbowl every day.

The projects, processes, and tasks are what gives us the confidence we need to get the result we’re after, which is the goal.  

If we only have a bunch of projects that are not accountable to a goal, we’re just doing busy work. You’ll never know where to focus. 

So, to recap: 

  1. A goal tells you why you are doing the project. Your goals are accountable to a result.
  2. Projects tell you what you’re going to be spending your time on. Your projects are accountable to a deadline. 

Goals and projects can often look the same, but remember that a goal has the why and an outcome that is usually not certain, and because of that, it needs the projects underneath it to make the outcome more likely.

Projects can make you feel busy and like you’re doing all sorts of worthwhile things, but if you’re not producing results, it’s just busy work. 

Knowing the difference between goals and projects and how they work together is a powerful concept. It might take a while to wrap your head around it all, but you can see how this approach changes the game when it comes to performance and productivity. 

So, this week, do your goals download and then go back and separate the projects from the goals, or restate some of the projects as goals if you have to. 

Hang on to both the projects and the goals because we will use those in the next step. 

If you’re having trouble with this concept, feel free to send me an email. I love talking about this stuff!