The Two Massive Benefits of Written Goals for Real Estate Investors
Each week, we post a new question to the Best Ever Show Community on Facebook. The Best Ever Show Community is a place where real estate entrepreneurs of all stripes and sizes can come together to interact with each other, me, and the guests featured on my podcast with the purpose of everyone helping each other reach the next level in their businesses and their lives.
What better way to add value than to ask you, the community, for your Best Ever advice on a variety of different real estate topics. This week, the question was “on a scale of 1 to 5, how important is it to have written goals for your real estate business?”
Step 1 of Tony Robbins’ Ultimate Success Formula is to know your outcome. He says clarity is power because where focus goes, energy flows. Once you define and write down a desired goal or outcome and make it your main point of focus, you will begin to – almost automatically – take the right action to achieve it. Therefore, writing down our goals gives us something to focus on, which allows us to narrow down the actions required to achieve our desired outcome.
I can tell that we have a lot of Tony Robbins’ fans in the Facebook community. Not only did the overwhelming majority (46 out of 51 responses) of active investors say that writing down goals is very important, but they also believe that they benefit from having written goals because it allows them to focus and take the right action that will lead them to achieving their goal.
That being said, the poll is closed and here are the results:
Written Goals = Focus
I think the quote that sums up the benefits of written goals in regards to focus is from Youseff Semaan, who said “If I don’t write my goals down, they remain thoughts in my head. By writing them down, they become tangible!”
A commonly referenced survey of Canadian media consumption by Microsoft in 2012 concluded that the average attention span fell to 8 seconds in 2012 from 12 seconds in 2000. Or to put it another way, humans have a shorter attention span than goldfish! So, focusing on our thoughts (and a goal that is only a thought) just isn’t realistic. Whereas if we’ve written our goals down, we can review them and refocus. Because, like Mark Ferguson said, “not only do [goals] need to be written down, [but] you need to have set times [when] you review those goals! It is too easy to lose track of what you really want.”
When we review our written goals, we become more and more focused. In regards to regularly reviewing our written goals, Michael Bishop quoted Napoleon Hill saying “repetition puts thoughts into your subconscious mind, and your subconscious mind has power to transmute desire into its physical equivalent.” Similarly, Nathan Nuckols said “what you [focus on] daily will eventually come to fruition.”
Even Mr. Miyagi and horse trainers understand the power of focus. Jay Helms said that goals are very important “for the same reason horses run with blinders on and the same lesson Mr. Miyagi kept trying to teach Daniel son – focus.”
There is a caveat, however, to focusing on your written goals. Curtis Danskin gave a warning, saying “if you fail to understand that goals are meant to morph and grow and change, you will surely experience disappointment. Goals are guides, a roadway with unexpected twists and turns, so keep up on them.” In other words, focus on your goals, but don’t become so focused that you pigeonhole yourself. Which leads us to the second benefit of written goal setting, which is that it allows us to take the right action steps towards achieving our desired outcome.
Written Goals = Right Action
Staring at a piece of paper with our goals written on it is a good start, but we also need to get out there and take action. Which is why Harrison Liu, who actually thinks that written goals aren’t very important, said “I have a goal that’s financial independence. After 17 years investing in real estate, I achieved that goal but never wrote it down. Taking action is a lot more important than writing on a piece of paper.” Looks like Harrison has been able to maintain his attention span while the rest of us are going the way of the goldfish!
Someone else who doesn’t right down their goals, but thinks they are very important is Eric Kottner. He said “as someone who doesn’t write down their goals, I have a lot of open time not know what to work on and [I] just wing it.” That is why we need to go a step further than just writing down our goals and regularly focusing on them. We need to also create a plan of action for how we will achieve them.
This includes determining the higher dollar tasks that make the biggest impact on our businesses. Micki McNie said “if I don’t have my goals written out along with specific action steps, I get stuck working on low dollar activities or distracted by shiny objections.”
It also means breaking own our long-term goal into smaller goals. Matthew Ryan said “without goals, you have no tasks that tell you what to execute on a quarterly, weekly and daily basis.” And Matt Anices said “I always write them down, long-term, short-term and daily.”
To tie the “focus” and “right action” together, I will end with a quote from a fortune cookie that Justin Grimes has taped to his car speedometer: “A dream is just a dream. A goal is a dream with a plan and a deadline.” So, without writing down your goals, focusing on them regularly and creating a plan of action, it is just a dream.
What do you think? Comment below: Why do you think it is important to have written goals?
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