How to Set Goals That Happen – The NLP Way
Goal setting is common. In fact it is so common that people tend to not pay attention anymore. We also teach this in both our NLP and Time Line Therapy® Practitioner and Master Practitioner trainings.
Everybody has learned to set goals; either through visualization, repetition, the law of attraction, what have you. But a niggling question always remains: how come that some goals happen and some don’t? How come that some goals happen better than imagined initially?
In one of our NLP Master Practitioner trainings, a student asked me an interesting question: “How do you set goals in a multidimensional reality?”
Huh? Say that again?
That’s a little absurd. What do you need that for? Most people’s goals relate to work, personal achievement, accomplishments, success, realization and the like. This is all there is – in the normal tri-dimensional reality.
But he was stubborn in his insistence, “No, really, how do you set goals in a multidimensional reality? Physics has demonstrated clearly for a long time that the reality we see, hear, sense, smell and taste is not the only reality that exists. How do you then set goals that take into account the visible and the invisible realities?”
That got me thinking.
Well, Time Line Therapy® (click on the link to see what is this) is taught as part of our NLP Coaching Certification trainings. The process has been telling us exactly this for about thirty years now but I never thought of it in this way before.
If we don’t understand how old and new “discoveries” – which are actually not really new (they were present in old and new philosophical considerations, Hermeticism, shamanism, modern physics, and…. Time Line Therapy®), or if we choose to misunderstand them, it’s not the fault of Time Line Therapy® or the goal setting process itself. All these are but different forms of saying the same thing: reality is multidimensional. In other words what you see is not all there is.
This is also why goal setting process as in Time Line Therapy® works.
In the past people were calling the “other” realities “the astral plane”, “the invisible world”, then physicists came along and they called it “other dimensions”, “parallel universes”, “multiverses”, “multidimensional realities”, and many other names, all referring to the same thing: reality is multidimensional.
Thinking in this way my student’s question wasn’t so strange overall. It did not sound so absurd any longer. He wanted to set goals not only for the seen tri-dimensional reality but to include more than just that, just for good measure. To make sure that he gets what he wants.
And the scientists stressed in many ways that these “other multi-dimensions” were more than three (which we are accustomed to and consider them to be “all there is”), more than four (including time as the fourth dimension). Actually they told us there are more than ten, more than a hundred of these parallel universes/dimensions/unseen worlds… to which we don’t seem to have direct access.
Now, I said direct access. I did not say that we don’t have access at all, because it seems that in the process called Creating Your Future® (which is part of Time Line Therapy®), somehow we influence the seen and the unseen by inserting – in a very specific way – goals in our future Time Line. And this is exactly why it works.
If we say the world shows us four dimensions (including time and the fourth dimension), we’re really talking about our human interpretation of this world. More than that, we’re talking about our human effort to make use of this world.
And it works. Sometimes. And sometimes it doesn’t.
However, working occasionally and not working other times isn’t the end of the story. Our technological advances have allowed us to fly to the moon. They have allowed us to enjoy our electronic gadgets and to have a go at changing the DNA of everything on this planet. Gone are the days of the horse carriage and the manual plow. That’s all good. And for many people this is all there is.
However, what about our experience, over many years, of using all this technology? We got used to it, and we consider it to be “it”. How many dimensions are contained that experience? Still three.
As a matter of fact, unnoticed by most people we are already beginning to live in multidimensional realities. Where is the world wide web? Is not on your drawer cabinet, and not even on “a cloud”. It does not exist as “real” and yet we relate to it as if it is totally real. Where is your avatar? Are you that avatar? Is that avatar “real”?
Not by any means.
According to WordBook English Dictionary “real” means “being or occurring in fact or actuality; having verified existence; not illusory”. By extension the world wide web and the avatars are not real. Tell that to web enthusiasts who have a richer experience “on the web” than in relating to flesh and blood people.
So, whether life is experienced in three, four or more dimensions depends on the person experiencing it. Experience is personal, individual and subjective. When you do the Creating Your Future® process what you’re actually doing is influencing the “other realities”.
How do I know? It’s very simple. The future hasn’t happen yet! So then, how is it possible to set a goal in your future Time Line and have it happen exactly the way you want?
There is only one way I can answer this question: when doing this process you’re actually accessing a multidimensional reality, which is not only outside you, but also inside of you. Yes, inside you. Inside your consciousness. Inside your mind. Inside your capacity for imagination and creativity. And this process allows you to express it. Not as a quantifiable amount, but as life and imagination.
No, you might say. What has imagination to do with any of this? We want to be rational and logical!
But where is the contradiction? Can’t you have a rich imagination, use it constructively and be logical and rational about it at the same time?
Setting goals is often the cropped and edited, restricted and reduced to three dimensions and therefore the “flattened” version of an interior reality that is so much fuller and richer and so much more alive. Like a picture of a beautiful mountain lake surrounded by snow covered mountain peaks drawn on a piece of paper. Flattened in two dimensions.
If we do this, we short-change ourselves since we begin to believe these goals of ours are the expression of our deepest desires. Nothing wrong with material goals. You deserve them. But this is not all.
Not by far.
Goals are signs. Goals are indicators. Of what? Of clues. Of clues from you to you. They’re direction-finding pointers. They tell us where we are and where we’re going. They tell us much more than that – if we only pay attention. But how many people you know stop to ask themselves “Why am I so driven to achieve X now?” “What is the bigger picture of which this goal is only a part of?”
Those who do, recognize that they’re reminded of something much larger, much more potent and much more insightful. There is something beyond just those goals. Something that drives them further and further into … dare I make a mind read here? Maybe a personal journey of Self-development and growth?
A goal says, go here, go there, do this, reach for that. It’s a short-lived, transitory and restricted version of a purpose whose complexity and is in fact limitless but unfortunately (at least for most people) deeply unconscious.
If we want more energy, passion and enthusiasm from life, we must begin to discover that following a goal opens up many other desires and purposes previously hidden inside the unconscious self. These revelations once discovered can be then put to work for a much better and larger use. These revelations in turn make our goals much more grandiose and everything else becomes – paradoxically – much more achievable.
Of course, we can stay stuck in the three dimensions of visible reality. This is what most people do anyway. They learn to be happy in there. They really believe this is all there ever was, is and will be. They construct impenetrable walls around their minds and learn to accept happiness delivered in a packet. They learn how to restrict themselves to a flat projection. Like the beautiful mountain lake, surrounded by gorgeous snow covered peaks on paper. No matter how beautiful the paper rendition might be, it is not the real thing.
The more you pay attention, the more you free yourself from fear and anxiety, the more you allow your creativity to shine, the more you will uncover. This in turn leads to greater goals and greater successes which in turn lead to greater self-confidence and good feelings. And finally you will discover that the mountain drawn on the paper does not please you anymore. You want the real thing.
Your consciousness is crying when it is reduced to a drawing on a piece of paper. Your goals are signs that suggest action along a tree with many branches. A living, complex tree of life.
Striving for a specific goal, makes you develop new skills, new strategies, new behaviors, in fact for some goals you need to develop a completely new you. And that’s the most important part of it all.
Eventually for those with eyes to see and ears to hear, the message becomes clearer and clearer – there are no limits to the number of dimensions of your Self. Learn how to begin the journey there. Many of our students do and for them life changes forever.
You can choose to believe you are but a drawing on a piece of paper.
But in reality this is not so.
Until next time, be well.