My goals are more easily achieved when I have a plan in place that will ensure that I am moving toward accomplishing them. As the author pointed out, when you focus on systems “… systems are good for making progress. … [c]ommitting to the process is what makes the difference.” The whole idea is to take the stress away from reaching the goal and to make a commitment to the plan that will ensure that I get there. Just as an example, if I am trying to lose 20 pounds and it’s possible to get there if I lower my carb intake, the premise behind following the process is that if I focus on my total weight loss rather than what I need to do to lose it, it’s very easy to get discouraged when I keep checking my weight and haven’t seen a change. If I focus on lowering carbs and stay committed to that, I’ll reach my goal because I put minimal focus on losing 20 pounds and stayed committed to what it will take to get there.
I had to give myself a basic test to determine if what the author was saying is true. Is goal setting sabotaging my happiness? This may very well be the case for me and so many other goal-setting people. Can I truly be happy if I haven’t reached that goal? Do I really consider myself successful since I haven’t accomplished another? I think that I’d rather focus on the process than to believe that I can’t be happy until I’ve reached a particular goal. Focusing on the process allows me to recognize that, yes I may/do have more work to accomplish that goal but I can see the progress I’ve made and celebrate that.