All posts

Goal orientation

NB: This post has been republished from my defunkt newsletter. Enjoy 🙏

Hey there,

When I started my career, it become obvious that I wanted to make strides towards putting myself in the position of my boss. I wanted to run my own business. I’m one of the lucky ones: I had a fixed goal and thus a clear path for what I needed to learn to give myself the best chance for success. Even with such a clear goal, it’s easy to get lost in the mirriad of opportunities that come your way. That’s the hard part.

Take my reading list as an example. No longer than two months after I started putting one together in Notion, I amassed a list of 53 books. At my current rate, it would be hard to read more than 12 books a year.

Then consider how that extrapolates out even more when it gets serious. Oh, you want to be a power lifter? Well, you best become an expert in nurtrition, physiology, weight training, and sleep management.

The hard part is picking which bits are the important bits and finding your “true north”.

This is why it’s important to have clear goals, and reoriente yourself to them every now and then. I’m writing this now, having started the hand over process with the business I’ve spent eight months building. The realisation that Byozo, despite meeting one goal, doesn’t meet it all that well. When reflecting on my true north, Byozo isn’t a match.

This isn’t a problem. The business could go onto be successful. I think it will. But me continuing to work full time on it could have been a problem. Had I continued, it may have been catastrophic.

It’s been incredibly hard for me to turn away from Byozo. Sunk cost fallacy is hard at work on this one. Being honest with myself has allowed me to find peace and own the situation.

The crux of the message is this:

Spend time figuring out your goals and be sure to bring yourself back to them frequently. They give you an anchor for progress and reflection. You can undestand when what you’re doing doesn’t fit and act accordingly. Similarly, you’ll know when you’re doing something that works so you can keep going. This is close to what I talk about in issue 6.

It’s important to spend time on “you” but it’s fine to be wrong too. At least then you’re trying.

I’d love to hear your goals and how you keep yourself pointing in the right direction, hit reply and let me know 🙏

Richard