Featured in TISA Mar 2013 Issue
Stop Doubting and Start Achieving Your Aims!
GOALS! How to Get Everything You Want – Faster Than You Ever Thought Possible
Tata McGraw-Hill, New Delhi, 2005. pp. 291, Rs. 266 (Flipkart)
Also available as free ebook download from Brian Tracy’s website.
Before you make any assumption or have a preconceived notion about “Goals” being another run-of-the-mill average self-help book with rehashed ideas, let us clear the air. “Goals” is a remarkable book that manages to help the reader understand the importance of goal-setting and how to unleash efforts at several levels to achieve them. We have all heard or read about goal-setting at some point in our lives. How many have actually acted on it? Many of us keep on going round in circles and attain far less than what we are capable, imagined, hoped or dreamed of. The problem lies within oneself and so is the solution.
This book’s key message is – if you want to succeed at anything in life in the future, you have to unleash your fullest potential and single mindedly plough through all obstacles to achieve it. It instills faith in the readers that absolutely anything is achievable if we truly believe in it and give our undivided efforts. But with the best of faith and dedication, we all need a clear plan. And the plan needs to be executed meticulously with utmost precision.
The first part of the book discusses the fundamental parts of setting a goal. It talks about developing faith in the self, the internal conviction that we can do what we set upon to do. The faith part is important because without that our efforts will always be half-hearted and our mind riddled with doubts.
It highlights the importance of becoming accountable, to take responsibility for our actions and the consequences. People who usually succeed are those who look inwards and try to change themselves or find an alternate solution instead of blaming everything else for failure. Tracy stresses on the importance of critically understanding and analyzing our values and beliefs. He says that our goals should be in tune with them or they will become hurdles in the path of accomplishment. The most vital proposal in the book is to understand our “truest goals”. For some people monetary gain and position might be of importance while someone else might be looking for learning and intellectual satisfaction. Once we know exactly what we want, we can start working towards it.
The latter part talks about how to accomplish the goal. One of the core points is becoming an expert in the field, knowing the intricacies of the subject by going into details and becoming an authority. He is prudent in advising that readers must attain their financial goals because they set us free to explore anything else. Unlike many other self-development books, this book solemnly highlights the importance of good health, family, friends and acquaintances for support, learning and motivation. We all need our safety net and support system.
Few essential chapters are Make a Plan of Action, Measure your Progress and Remove the Roadblocks. These tangible factors are the guiding points to attaining goals. Personally, the two chapters on time management and goal review are of paramount consequence. One implores us to extract the maximum from every 24 hour cycle and the other acts as a barometer of our progress.
A resounding message of the book is to keep on persisting in the face of any adversity and not quitting at all! The goals always need not be super-sized; they can be smaller executed over a shorter time period with a specific purpose. The extension of setting personal goals in life will easily extend to business goals and the same system of achieving them can be applied with assured results. This book is timeless because the message it contains is not restricted to any geographic location, era or subject. It is rich with suggestions, plans, advice and guidance for the reader. I completely recommend this book to students, entrepreneurs and working professionals as a constant companion.
The appeal of the book lies in its structure and language. Though there are 21 chapters in this book and the book itself spans close to 300 pages (which is a bit long) but one does not need to read it from start to end. Every chapter ends with few key points which form the gist. One can read the last chapter “conclusion” and then read each chapter in isolation. This book is not a one-time read. Readers will feel the need to go back and refer to sections to refresh the ideas and reinforce them.
Brian Tracy is a world renowned management consultant, speaker and trainer and has authored many books on self-development and motivation. The brilliance of his writing is centered on his effortless use of language delivering crucial concepts and ideas for a wide range of readers in a very straightforward manner.