Often when we visualize our future selves, we’re picturing a perfect, idealized final result. We think of the outcomes we want to achieve in areas like relationships, body image, career, and money…but we don’t think about the process of daily living in that imagined state.
What I teach in Aligned Coaching is to get in touch with your future self and be empowered to go and live as her now. The way we do this is by borrowing her thoughts and actions…but the secret sauce in all of it is the process, not the results. That’s the how behind becoming the woman you want to be, and maintaining and nurturing that growth long-term.
In the latest podcast episode, #94: Process Not Just Results, we’re digging into this recipe in-depth.
Imagine a pie chart. 1/16th of the pie are your results, while the other 94% is the process that actually gets you there. Every new thing eventually becomes old, and it’s the exact same with accomplishing any goal or reaching any end point. We automatically move on to craving new results — so the vast majority of the “pie” is actually the process and journey to get there, and that’s the hugest opportunity for daily joy.
When we’re awake to this truth, we open up a whole new way of achieving results, where we can actually bake enjoyment, connection, and presence into the process all along the way.
For example: A results-oriented approach to running a half marathon would only focus on the final achievement, and gloss over the huge amount of the “pie” that will be the actual daily work to get there. We fantasize that long training runs, cold dark mornings, and foregoing coffee will suddenly come easy to us…forgetting we’ll be the same person who can’t find her running shoes tomorrow that we were today.
But a process-oriented approach can offer a more realistic roadmap to the finish line…leaving space for potential hurdles that will come up and figuring out how to make the daily action itself frictionless — as you set yourself up for success on a consistent basis and not just at an imaginary end result.
Instead of attempting to slog through a process you don’t even like, think about adding in joy: Setting out the highlighter-pink running shoes that make your soul happy. Programming your coffee pot timer to finish brewing just as you return from your run for a little celebration. Finding the route with the absolute best sunrise views and pausing to stretch and breathe them in.
Achieving the end result still won’t be effortless, but on a day-by-day basis we can take the actions that make for the most joy-filled process…and truly savor every bite of those other 15 pieces of the pie.
Action steps for this week:
• Head to the podcast episode to discover the secrets of designing a joy-filled process. Bonus points: Text a friend about it after listening to connect and digest what you learned!
• Open up your journal and consider: What end result am I craving? If I already had this result, what would my daily actions be to maintain it? How can I infuse joy into that process, and where can I remove friction?
• Add one recurring task to your calendar that will constitute a joy-filled process…moving you toward the end result as you relish the whole delicious pie to get there.
P.S. Love the podcast?