Gaining Mastery in Life


Having Life — the Way You Want It




In order to have mastery in life we must have a long term focus.

So many of the difficulties people have in life come from short term focus.  For example, a lot of people don’t take care of their physical instrument — they overeat, take drugs of one kind or another, don’t exercise — because they focus on immediate pain or pleasure.

Deciding to commit yourself to long-term results, rather than short-term fixes is as important as any decision you’ll ever make in your life.  Ever.

Decisions, not conditions, determine your destiny.

If you want mastery, develop a compelling future in the areas of loving relationships, time, money and life purpose.  The difference between knowing about something and knowing something by experience comes from the drive that only a compelling future can give your life.

An essential skill in having mastery in life is knowing about goals.  With goals and beliefs and plans the only things between now and your having what you want in any area of life is time and space.

So — have goals.  In every area of life.

As long as you and I structure our lives in a way where our happiness is dependent on something we cannot control, then we are going to experience pain.  I’ve noticed that successful persons, when they have difficulties in life, do not choose to see those things as permanent or pervasive.  Nor do they take them personally.

If you have beliefs that hold you back in some area of life, change those beliefs.  Since you can’t change something you don’t know about, it is important to take time to live reflectively.  Beliefs are absolutely arbitrary.  Create beliefs that work for you. A strong mental attitude is built in the same way physical strength is built — by repetition.

Also, have specific plans.  If you want to make a change in the way you feel about some specific goal — take action.  We don’t take action on things because we are afraid. Fear is only a feeling. Not a fact. The decision to live — rather than simply exist — is demonstrated by what we do.

Have goals, have useful beliefs, have specific plans.  A major secret to having a successful life is to write these things down.

What follows is a short course on how to set and achieve goals.

Identify the goal.  You have to have a clear idea of what you want and a commitment to that end.

By when?  Write down a date.

List the obstacles between where you are now and having that goal.  Develop plans for doing something about each obstacle.

Write down the people you need to be with to support you in your goal accomplishment.  Write down the people you will need to stay away from in order to have what you want.

What skills do you need to develop that you don’t have now to help you in reaching the desired outcome you have set for yourself?

At least twice a day, have a way and time to visualize and evaluate what it is you are going for.

Develop a time-dated action plan.

When you do get what you want, throw a party even if you are the only one you invite.

Please understand, however, that getting goals isn’t what life is about.  It is the quality of life you have along the way that matters.  So many people get caught up in making a living that they neglect making a life.  Your life is about freedom and love.  You are to live your making in the process of making your living. That’s what is most important.

Don’t go for any goal in your life in order to achieve happiness.  It won’t work.  Don’t achieve in order to be happy.  Happily achieve.  A commitment worth developing is to live each moment of your life as fully, productively, joyfully as possible.  Commit yourself to health, wealth (this has almost nothing to do with money) and happiness — not out there somewhere but right here and right now.

© Dr. William C. Kerley