One of the very first things that we think about when we’re pursuing any goal is ‘What do I need to do?’ We write down our goal and then we think about all the action steps — this is when we come up with our TO-DO list.
But have you ever thought about a TO-BE list?
Rarely does anyone ever think about a TO-BE list. Actually, I think that your TO-BE list is actually more important than your TO-DO list. When it comes to achieving your goals.
You see anything and everything that you do is really driven by your identity and what you believe about yourself. A lot of this happens at the subconscious level. We’re not even really aware of some of the things that are driving us towards or away from achieving your goals. For you to be successful, you need to ask yourself, “Who do I need to be?” That’s actually just as, if not more important, than figuring out what you need to do.
What do I mean by “Who do I need to be?”
Think about somebody who has achieved the success that you want to achieve.
- How do they behave?
- What is their way of being in the world?
- What are some of the characteristics that have led to them being successful?
- What is their identity about who they are?
I want to share with you my own list of my TO-BE for this year, and hopefully, maybe it might inspire you to start to think about your own list of who you need to be.
My TO-BE List
I came up with five things that I thought were really important for me to be in order for me to achieve the goals that I am chasing for this year.
1. To be in SELF-INTEGRITY
One of the things that I am so good at is making sure that I honor my commitments to other people. If someone asks me to do something for them, I’ll literally walk over hot coals to make sure that I do the thing because I promised. And yet, I don’t apply that same level of integrity or commitment to myself. What would inevitably happen is I would make goals, but then I would help other people that would come and ask for my help, even though I knew on those days, I had planned to do something towards my goals. I wanted to be nice, so I would compromise my self-integrity to make sure that I was in integrity of honoring my commitment to somebody else.
So for this year, a big thing is for me to be in integrity with myself.
One of my favorite books is The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz. He talks about the fact that our words are powerful, that what we commit to ourselves is just as important, if not more important than what we commit to other people.
And so for this year, for me, it really was about being, as he says, ‘impeccable with my word’. Being impeccable with my word to myself, honoring the things that I promised myself, and honoring the commitments that I made to myself.
2. To be DISCIPLINED
I used to associate discipline with negative feelings, because the only time that word was ever used in my life growing up, especially as a little girl, ‘discipline’ meant you were being punished.
And yet discipline is really the ground on which your success is built on. It is similar to integrity in doing what I need to do when I need to do it, and doing what I need to do, even when I don’t feel like doing it.
I have to be disciplined in terms of what I agree to, and what I do not agree to. Because just as important my TO-DO list is, so also is my NOT-TO-DO list. I have to be disciplined in terms of figuring out what actually is important, and what will actually move me towards my goal.
3. To be FOCUSED
I am someone who has a busy mind. My husband often jokes that, “it must be exhausting being in your mind,” because my mind is everywhere. One of the things that I find difficult to do is be focused, because at any one time, I’m thinking a million thoughts.
I have recognized and realized that I need to be focused both in terms of what I’m working on right now, and also in terms of my goals. I can’t chase every goal at the same time.
I have to filter and decide on the goals that I’m working on for this year in this phase of my life, and really focus on that. Not everything is important all the time, and not everything is equally important at this moment in time.
4. To be COURAGEOUS
For a long time, I had goals and dreams that stayed on paper. They were just goals and dreams in my mind because I wasn’t courageous. I didn’t want to step into my fear to do the thing, whether it was putting myself out there and telling people what I was working on, or having the courage to step into things that were new and uncomfortable for me.
I’m not challenging myself to be fearless.
Fear is a natural part of being human. If you’re human, you’re gonna have fear. But for me, it really is about focusing on feeling the fear, but really pulling up the courage within myself to step into that fear and do it anyway.
5. To be HONORING TIME
I am someone who does not typically respect my time, in terms of honoring the fact that I only have a limited amount of time. It is one of the things that led to me being diagnosed with adrenal fatigue.
A few years ago, I was working as much as I could in a 24 hour period. I have to recognize for myself that there is so much time that can be allocated to work, and that allocating time to rest is not a waste of time. I have to be cognizant about how I am using my time.
One of the things that I love to talk about and is one of the pillars of WORTHY, is Own The Day. What I speak about in this pillar is really about being intentional with spending time, intentional about how you spend every minute, every hour every day. I’m not saying to have everything absolutely laid out and scripted, but it really is about being where your feet are as well being present in what you’re doing. When you’re present and fully focused, that allows you to really come at it giving your best.
So these are the five things that I am focusing on this year in terms of who I need to be, to be the kind of person who will achieve the goals that I have for this year.
Now for you the list might be different. Your goals and dreams are very different from mine. But I hope that this will inspire you to start thinking about the ways of being that will help you towards your goals.
So remember the question to ask yourself, in addition to asking yourself, “What do I need to do to move towards my goals?” is, “Who do I need to be?”
Sandra has a podcast episode on this topic in the WORTHY Podcast:
You can also watch it on YouTube: