I want to see what happens if I...

jasonleow  •  14 Jan 2022   •  

Try this goal setting exercise:

Instead of a typical goal that starts with “I will do X…”, phrase it as “I want to see what happens if I…”

I love the slightly different spin on the usual goal-setting frame. Just a change of a few words, and they invite a vastly different way to think and plan for your goals:

Instead of being definitive and specific, you leave things open.
Instead of setting hard metrics, you entertain possibilities.
Instead of setting it to be attainable, you leave room to expand as things unfold.
Instead of being realistic, you dream big and think about the future you want.
Instead of arbitrarily setting a hard deadline, your time is flexible.

So here’s a different take on the open questions I had for the year:

I want to see what happens if I…

• live with alacrity, with a cheerful readiness and optimism for all things good and bad that would come
• hit $200 MRR before the year ends
• try to hit $5k revenue this year
• make enough money off my products to support my lifestyle and family
• build more products
• start thinking about the other products I want to make
• found my next big thing
• found my next product for tech for good
• realise I still have what it takes to create something profitable and popular
• I truly embody a wealth mindset
• realise I have what it takes to get rich
• found ways to grow my savings back to what it was
• finally get over myself about investing
• nail my sleep to 90% consistently
• get back to a fitness level of my 20s or 30s
• bring familyhood to the next level
• when things go back to normal
• we can travel again
• know what’s my spiritual path like ahead
• go on retreats again
• finally feel like I’m thriving, not surviving

Loved editing the open questions into a “I want to see what happens if I…” frame!

With the open questions, there was a lingering sense of doubt and uncertainty. If I read it on low morale days, it would hinder more than help.

But with the new framing, it got me to thinking “Wow what if this happened…”. I was invited to think about that desired future and it made me anticipate and long for it than to focus on the uncertain and difficult present. My efforts feel more directed towards a destination, towards an outcome.

It gave clarity, not certainty.

And that alone is enough.