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Last Updated on April 28, 2021

3 Tips for Reprogramming the Subconscious Mind to Reach Goals

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3 Tips for Reprogramming the Subconscious Mind to Reach Goals

It has been suggested that a lack of positive thinking can be detrimental to one’s chances of achieving your goals.[1] A series of negative thoughts in your subconscious will inevitably have an impact on how often you reach your goals. Because of this, reprogramming the subconscious mind that be an essential step in the goal setting process.

Reprogramming the subconscious mind isn’t as difficult as it seems. It won’t be done overnight, but it can be accomplished if you are serious about engaging in a series of well-known exercises.

By doing this, you not only have a better chance of reaching your goals, but you’ll come to a deeper understanding of your strengths and weaknesses, identify your priorities, and grow into a more responsible, respected individual.

In this article, I will share with you three ways to reprogram your subconscious mind to reach your goals in plain English.

Why Is Reprogramming the Subconscious Mind Important?

The simple answer is because people are often afraid of not succeeding. Many times, the fear of failure may cause some to believe that failure in their lives will mean failure forever and cause them to a lead a life full of disappointment.

I have to admit that I suffered from this when I came to the United States as an ESL student back in 1998. When I came to the United States in the late 90s at age 24, I was terrified about the prospects of having to learn the English language in six months and having to attend college in a second language right after and graduate within four years.

Clearly, I had to work on reprogramming the subconscious mind and convincing myself to believe that engaging in such a daunting endeavor was possible, rewarding, and within my reach.

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It has been said that our conscious mind represents only 3% of our brain. The other 97% belongs to the subconscious mind. According to Dr. Collautt, our subconscious mind is one million times more powerful than our conscious mind, which leads me to believe that working on our subconscious mind is worthwhile.

Check out an interview with Dr. Collautt on this very topic here:

I’m not in favor of recommending anyone to engage in hypnosis, meditation, or anything new age. I’m in favor, however, of people realizing that they do have the power to work in harmony with their inner self from a scientific standpoint.

3 Ways to Start Reprogramming the Subconscious Mind

To reprogram your subconscious mind to reach your goals, do these following exercises for a year and pay attention to the changes that begin to manifest.

The following exercises are exactly what I did to conquer my fears of failure in academics, which lead me to complete a PhD in Instructional Systems from a big ten school in 2008.

1. Be Humble

Don’t assume you know everything,

and listen to your subconscious resistance.[2]

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When I was young, I assumed that I knew everything, and I definitely didn’t listen to my subconscious, which led me to having to leave a country to find my place under the sun.

I grew up playing golf in a country with no history in the sport. I was great at it, which made it very difficult to be humble. I thought I knew everything about life because I knew the intricacies of golf, but as early as 16 years old, my subconscious began to tell me, “Yes, you are a great golfer, but Brazil doesn’t have a healthy professional golf league. Shouldn’t you be studying instead of playing golf?”

Long story short, my subconscious was right. I spent way too long dreaming of being something unattainable because I “knew” what was best for me, despite the fact that my inner self was skeptical about my prospects of being a pro-golfer in Brazil. Most of my close friends agreed with my subconscious mind, but I resisted and paid the price.

When I came to Mississippi in 1998, I decided to do something different. I used to sit down for one hour or so alone a day and listen to what my subconscious was saying, which led me to have a much higher degree of humility. I embraced my subconscious resistance, which made all the difference.

Once you acknowledge that you don’t have everything figured out and that there is room for growth, goals feel more interesting and attainable.

2. Define Your Fears

It is okay to listen to your fears and define what these fears are.

When I was a student of Sports Management at Slippery Rock University, I wanted to be a sports agent. But in order to be a great sports agent, people need to go to law school. I wanted to go to law school, but the prospects of scoring high on the LSAT and reading law causes extensively made me rethink my future academic decisions.

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I remember going to the Duquesne University campus in Pittsburgh, PA for a day with a notebook in order to face my fears and define what these fears really were.

This is a great exercise all around, as facing the unknown is an important exercise that is one step toward reprogramming the subconscious mind.

I listened to my fears and defined what they were in order to help me to maneuver through life. I decided not to go to Duquesne Law School because of my fear of not speaking English well enough, along with the high cost.

I thought harder and realized that going to another smaller school to pursue a Masters degree in Communication was a much better idea. Six years later, I completed a PhD Summa Cum Laude. I was able to reprogram my subconscious in order to pursue what was the most logical.

If you don’t know specifically what fears your subconscious is facing, they will forever plague you and keep you from pursuing and reaching your goals. Take the time to sit with what you’re afraid of; by doing this, you’ll be able to develop a plan to face it head on.

Fears can lead to procrastination if they aren’t taken care of. If you find you’re having this problem, check out Lifehack’s Fast Track Class – No More Procrastination to get yourself back on track.

3. Repeat What You Believe to Your Subconscious

You need to do affirmations or the action of affirming something.

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I convinced myself that I was going to be a college professor throughout my Bachelors degree experience. At Penn State University, where I completed my doctorate, I was studying among the very best students in the world in technology.

I repeatedly told myself that I was a top student in instructional systems in the United States and visualized my career being a college professor in a teaching university. Repeating my beliefs through affirmations in graduate school have proven worthwhile, and today I’m a mid-career college professor in a teaching university on my way to senior status.

It’s amazing what you accomplish when you convince yourself that you can do something multiple times a day. Affirmations work when you take the time to develop phrases that are specific to your goals and dreams.

Conclusion

Reaching your life goals are directly related to how much you believe that you can achieve them.

It is possible to start reprogramming the subconscious mind in order to achieve your goals with distinction. It will take more than a couple of hours to change your state of mind though.

Be patient and keep course, as harnessing the power of your subconscious and overcoming the limiting beliefs found there may be the difference between you achieving your goals failing in your long-term life pursuits.

More on Working With the Subconscious

Featured photo credit: Zulmaury Saavedra via unsplash.com

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Reference

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Dr. Luis C. Almeida

Dr. Almeida is a college professor and department chair who has taught over a thousand students with questions relating to technology and leadership.

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Published on September 16, 2021

What Are Process Goals? (With Examples)

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What Are Process Goals? (With Examples)

Ready. Set. Go. For years, this was my three-step mindset when it came to goals. I would reach for the moon and hope to land among the stars without feeling the pain of the fall. This approach was all or nothing, and as a result, I experienced loads of burnout and almost zero productivity. In short, my task list was filled with high-level intentions, but I hadn’t taken the time to create a map to reach the destinations. I was lost in the planning stages because I didn’t understand process goals or have any examples to follow.

Since then, I’ve learned how to embrace the journey and break my outcome goals into smaller and more manageable process goals. This approach has improved my focus and reduced frustration because I’m now working towards a surefire strategy that will take me where I want to go––I’m creating a plan of action with achievable daily targets (a process goal).

What Is a Process Goal?

A process goal is not a destination, it’s the path you plan on taking to get there. For example, if you want to become better at writing, your process goal would be to post one blog article per week and learn from the feedback you receive. The destination is a monthly goal of 12 articles.

This distinction is important because it’s easy to lose sight of the fact that these types of goals are not all or nothing. Think about it. You’ve heard it said: it’s not about working hard but working smart.

Well, a process goal is an actionable target with what we call SMART criteria:

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  • Specific – The more detailed your goal, the better. For example, instead of “I want to be fit,” you would say, “I want to lose five pounds.” Make sure your goal is crystal clear.
  • Measurable – You need a way to measure progress and success, so it needs to be quantifiable. This is where you decide what “fit” actually means for you (more on this later).
  • Achievable – If your goal isn’t challenging, then it’s not going to be motivating. On the other hand, there must be a steeper mountain to climb if you want substantial results.
  • Realistic – “I want to run a marathon” is not practical for most people. Ensure you have the time, energy, and resources (e.g., training program) required to achieve your goal.
  • Time-Bound – Your goal needs an assigned deadline or it’s just a pipe dream. There’s nothing wrong with dreaming, but what happens when the fantasy ends?

To summarize, these are the essential components of any process goal: specific, measurable, achievable within a certain time frame, and realistic.

What Is a Destination Goal?

A destination goal is a point in time when you plan to be at a particular destination. For example, if your goal is to get to represent your country at the 2025 Summer Olympics, you right need to focus on smaller increments to attain that success. On your way to that goal, you need to focus on smaller destinations. First, make the national team. Then, compete in a few events and so forth.

If you try to make it to the Olympics from the very start without any milestones along the way, it would be too daunting. On the other hand, if you focus on each milestone as a destination goal, it will all seem possible and achievable.

Process Goal Template

Let’s say you want to become a better cook. Here is one way of writing the process goal: “I will save $100 per week by cooking all my meals at home for 12 weeks.” This would be your destination (monthly), and the steps required to achieve this goal (weekly) would be:

  1. Spend one hour on Sunday planning my meals for the week.
  2. Shop for groceries after work on Monday and Tuesday nights.
  3. Cook all meals at home on Wednesdays through Sundays.
  4. Pack my lunch for work on Mondays and Tuesdays.
  5. Save $100 per week in cash by cooking at home.

This process goal will help you become a better cook by teaching you to save money through planning, shopping, cooking, packing your own lunch, and trying new recipes. It also includes a weekly reward (saving $100 in cash) that will help you stay motivated.

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Process goals encourage you to reach your ultimate goals. When you feel like you can accomplish smaller goals along the way, you gain sustainability and confidence to move forward.

In many ways, process goals are a lot like faith. Each accomplishment brings you closer to seeing the fullness of the life that you desire––it breaks through the fog and makes things clearer.

What Questions Helped Me Find My Process Goals?

After several years of setting lofty goals and becoming increasingly frustrated when I wasn’t getting the results I wanted, I decided to take a closer look at my approach.

Now, there are many ways you can do this, but here’s how I went about it. Last year, I asked myself the following questions:

  • What am I doing right now?
  • How can I get better at this?
  • Is this process goal leading me closer to my ultimate goals?

The choices I made from the answers to these questions became my process goals. They were the driving force that kept me motivated and moving forward when I wanted to give up and throw in the towel. Since then, I’ve been able to accomplish lifelong goals that I had given up on years ago. For example, I’ve been able to obtain a publishing contract, create more digital products for my business, and enjoy the moment.

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Before I broke down my goals into smaller ones, I was struggling to just get out of bed. The thought of my endless list kept me stagnant. Now, I look forward to each morning and taking on smaller projects to reach profitable outcomes.

What Are Some Process Goals You Can Try?

So, now that you understand the importance of process goals, let’s get you started with some examples that you can utilize this week:

  • Sign up for a new class.
  • Complete one portion of your project by Thursday.
  • Start walking around the block instead of running a mile.
  • Improve your writing by spending 30 minutes everyday journaling.
  • Practice your interview skills.
  • Read at least one book from the library this week.
  • Do ten push-ups each day before you leave for work.

You get the idea. These process goals don’t have to be complicated. If anything, you want to break down your plans to the point of them feeling easy or at least doable without needing a week’s vacation. By breaking your goals down into smaller pieces, you can accomplish a lot more in a shorter period. You’ll also feel more confident that you’re able to accomplish something within the moment.

It isn’t easy to continue towards your goal if achievement feels too far away. You need to celebrate the small things and embrace the process.

What Do You Need for Process Goals?

Think about how much time and money you’ve spent on new clothes, books, technology, etc. Many of us want to keep up with the latest trends and purchase the best gadgets from Apple or Microsoft. But all of these extra investments come at a steep price.

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To find your process goals, you may have to face some difficult emotions or situations bravely and confront them head-on. You might need to forgo the new outfit or the latest Mac book to meet your overall objectives.[1] Remember, process goals not only protect you from feeling overwhelmed, but they also keep you from being distracted.

Final Thoughts

You may feel overwhelmed at first when trying to set a process goal. Sometimes, just thinking about change triggers stress hormones, which only leads to more worries and anxious feelings. However, if you keep yourself focused and take small steps in the right direction, you’ll soon realize that goals don’t have to be complicated.

You can achieve your process goals one day at a time, and you can start today by breaking down your larger goal into smaller steps. It doesn’t matter if the process takes a week or six months, what matters most is that you’re moving forward and doing something to make yourself better.

Now, go on out there and achieve one of your process goals!

Featured photo credit: Kaleidico via unsplash.com

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Reference

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