Tips from Masters: Jonathan Mead from IlluminatedMind on creating clear intentions and setting priorities
Friday, January 29th, 2010 at 3:58
This is one in a series of interviews of self help experts and bloggers in the Tips from Masters series.
Jonathan Mead writes about personal growth and effectiveness at Illunimated Mind. He’s also a regular guest writer at Zenhabits and the autor of Reclaim Your Dreams. In this interview Jonathan reveals some tips about creating clear intentions and setting priorities. Enjoy!
1. How did you find your passion? What do you think is the best way to find it?
I found my passion by simply following my natural curiosity. I listened to what I was drawn to learn and hungry to know more about. I found that I was drawn to certain things, and not drawn to others, I just followed what I was naturally drawn to. For those that don’t feel this pull so strongly in their lives, I suggest just trying lots of things. Be willing to give up what you don’t like, and do more of what you do like. Don’t get too attached in the beginning and feel like you have to follow through with everything you try. Just try lots of stuff and see what sticks.
2. How do you go from goal setting to implementation? How do you make sure that you take constant action toward your goals?
I’m not too big on goal setting, but I am big on creating clear intentions and defining a direction. To ensure that I am constantly moving in the direction I want to, I’ve found that a couple of things have helped me a lot. One is creating an intention board. I have a cork board in my office where I print out my most important intentions (or goals, if you’d like to use that word) and put them up on the board. I try to stick to no more than eight intentions at a time. Some of mine might be “I’m launching my next best-selling product” or “I am extremely focused.” Whatever is most important to me, I put it up. I’ll review and change these every three months or so.
The other thing that has worked well for me is creating accountability by surrounding myself with other passionate people. This has worked extremely well for me with fitness and martial arts. I meet up with fellow martial artists three times a week and practice. I meet up with a few of the same people a few times each week to go hiking, trail-running and do strength training. Being surrounded by a group of people that are interested in the same things as you is a great way to inspire each other and keep each other accountable.
3. How do you stay focused? How do you keep distractions at bay?
In order to stay focus, I think it’s important to realize that you are going to always seem “unbalanced” in some way. To focus on a certain area of your life that you want to improve, it may be necessary to neglect other areas for a period of time. I’m not saying that you should let you relationships go to waste and let your health deteriorate. But you will need to set priorities and decide what you are willing to give up. There’s a great quote that I like to remember when I’m trying to stay focused: “You can have everything you want, you just can’t have it all at the same time.”
If you want to learn more from Jonathan, visit his blog, www.illuminatedmind.net, or follow him on Twitter @jonathanmead.
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