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Accomplish Your Goals using These Five Coaching Questions

14 Sep 2015 | Posted Under Coaching

Last month two young female Army officers made history by becoming the first two women to complete the elite Army Ranger course—a two month training program that demands physical strength, mental discipline and endurance. Approximately one-quarter of the applicants for this grueling army training complete it. Of the 400 candidates (19 women) who participated in the current two-month training, 94 men and 2 woman graduated. I am in awe of these amazing women because they pushed themselves to their limit, accomplished their goal and raised the bar for other women. Brava!

Their accomplishment might inspire you to do something that places you outside of your comfort zone. Whenever you set goals that demand commitment and perseverance, you become your own hero/heroine. Going through cancer treatment, surviving a loss, getting a higher education, taking training courses, starting a business, hiking a challenging trail and so much more—these examples demonstrate that you can go the distance to accomplish what you want. You might not get a “badge” at the end, but you can celebrate the awesome and empowered person that you are.

After the lazy days of summer, you may be ready to focus your attention, time and energy as well as invest your money toward something you want to accomplish. Your objective may stretch you to be, do or have more: (be – inner peace), (do – stop drinking sweetened beverages) or (have – supportive relationships).

Below is a brief coaching process that will help you get clear about what you want, take action steps to make it happen, overcome obstacles and celebrate success often. You can use this process continually throughout your life. Ask yourself these important questions to get started:

What do I want to accomplish within the next six months to two years? What does it mean to me to have it? (When what you want has great meaning for you, you are committed to making it happen. It reflects your values and gives your life relevance.) Example: I want to complete a 12-week physical fitness challenge at the gym. I am doing something to stay healthy and look my best.

What are three actions I can take to move toward that objective? (Actions are necessary to accomplish your goal. Make them count.) Example: I) Get all of the information and sign up; 2) put a training program in place; and 3) create a healthy food plan.

What could get in my way of doing it? (You sabotage your success by not dealing with internal resistance, i.e., negative thinking, or finding a way through an external obstacle, i.e., not enough time. Both resistance and obstacles will be a part of your journey to get what you want.) Example:  negative thinking – “I am just too overweight to compete.”  external obstacle – Weekly classes are held at dinner time, and I need to feed my family.

How will I overcome it? (Once you identify what could get in your way, put an action in place that will support your goal.) Example:  positive thinking – “I can do it anyway; the weight issue is just a limiting story I am telling myself.”  overcome obstacle – I can prepare meals ahead of time and freeze them; I can ask my husband to help out for 12 weeks.

How will I acknowledge the small wins? (Short-term goals on your way to a greater goal allow you to celebrate success often. Success attracts more success.) Example: Half way through the training, I will treat myself to a new pair of sneakers.

The two women who graduated from the Ranger course accomplished their goal. The training included peer evaluations. The men had to see these women as valued members of the team, and they did. When you are committed and do your best to accomplish your goals, you also need support from others. The “right” relationships motivate you to accomplish more than you could imagine. 

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