Team Tony cultivates, curates and shares Tony Robbins’ stories and core principles, to help others achieve an extraordinary life.
If Your Goal Doesn’t Scare You, Find a New Goal
Set Life Goals That Scare You
What is your life goal? Is it big enough? And what are you doing to make it a reality? For many people, the answer is “nothing.” They’re too scared to take the first step because the next one hasn’t appeared yet. More than anything else, achieving your goals in life is about starting and taking that first step.
“Larger than life goals are about taking a deeper calling inside of us and having so much resolve in their purpose that we see them through, no matter what.”
Tony is about to hit his goal of providing 1 billion meals through his 1 Billion Meals Challenge in partnership with Feeding America – two years ahead of schedule.
At one point, hitting that goal seemed unimaginable.
At age 11, a stranger showed up at Tony’s house on Thanksgiving with a basket of food. This event inspired him to make a decision – if strangers cared, he would too, and he’d find a way to give back. Giving back became his REASON.
At the time, he had no idea how to make this happen. Upon turning 17, he took what little money he had and made food baskets for two families in need in his neighborhood. Their gratitude and joy ignited something in him, inspiring him to achieve big goals in an effort to keep that feeling alive. Over the next year, he fed four families, then ten, which grew to 4 million meals, 100 million meals and then finally to 1 billion.
Your goals must scare you a little. If they don’t, you’re not dreaming big enough.
So how do you set BIG goals? Or what Peter H. Diamandis calls a moonshot goal? Something BIG, world-changing and a little bit crazy. A moonshot is going 10X bigger, while the rest of the world is only going 10% bigger. These are the goals that scare you. They are the best examples of life goals.
Living with passion is about setting big goals
Humans have a deep need for growth; we all need these moonshot goals, which is why effort is the reward for the most successful people. Putting in the effort isn’t about the goal – it’s about growth. The purpose of big goals is to grow and to give. It’s a game you play. It’s a journey you take. It’s about living passionately.
Once Tony plans for a goal, he thinks even bigger for the next one. When he was young, he wanted to be a rock star (who doesn’t?). Then a baseball player. Then a famous sportscaster. Finally, he found his calling. Now he’s focused on giving back in big ways.
Regarding his current moonshot goals: he and his team are exploring a long-term solution for worldwide hunger while filling the hole for the projected 345 million humans currently facing food insecurity. An estimated 2 billion people on this planet lack safe drinking water, so the team is also providing clean water to 250,000 people in India – with the goal of making that 1 million people.
He’s helping to save thousands of children from slavery through organizations that provide rescue and rehabilitation services, with 29,000 rescued so far. And he recently helped produce the powerful new film “Sound of Freedom,” which stars Jim Caviezel in the true-life role of Tim Ballard, who fights against this global epidemic.
Each July, the Tony Robbins Foundation’s Global Youth Leadership Summitempowers thousands of young people by teaching them the skills to identify their core leadership strengths.
He’s also provided funding to send ground-breaking portable baby incubators to Ukrainian healthcare facilities to help with labor and delivery services. He’s supported the distribution of 100 life-saving incubators to help thousands of newborns.
These problems can seem insurmountable, but when you deeply care about your goal – something outside yourself that you’ll go to the ends of the earth to achieve –that’s a moonshot goal within reach.
Tony has learned a lot about life goals in his lifetime. And whether you want to change the world, support your family or impact total strangers in a BIG way, three keys are invaluable.
Achieving big goals is about finding leverage
The first step is leverage: You must uncover what is most important to you. The thing that will make you commit to change. The thing that will turn your goal into a MUST, not a should: A “should” you will do when life is easy – a “must” you will make happen no matter what.
What’s the difference between a should and a must? REASONS. Reasons come first; answers come second. If you have a strong enough “why,” you can do anything. That’s your leverage. Tony’s “why” came to him through the kindness of a stranger, but it isn’t always obvious. You might have to dig deeper.
Ask yourself: “What can I do to add value to the world? What do I have to offer? If I wasn’t afraid to fail – if I couldn’t fail – what would I want most in life?” That’s your big life goal.
The difference between must and should is the life you want and the life you have. We all get what we tolerate: in our careers, relationships and daily lives. But we can DECIDE that we have a higher purpose in life. When we relate everything we do back to that purpose, achieving our goals in life isn’t a CHOICE anymore; it’s something we HAVE to do, or we’ll regret it forever.
“The tyranny of how” will only hold you back
What keeps people from making moonshot goals a reality? Limiting beliefs. And what is a belief? It’s nothing but a feeling of certainty about something – and we can be absolutely sure of things that aren’t true. Our beliefs have nothing to do with reality but make us uncertain. They fill us with doubt and fear and stop us from taking massive action. They make us ask how when we need to be asking why.
How is the wrong place to start with your big goals in life. If the goal is big enough, you’ve never done anything like it, so your mind will subconsciously trick you into thinking you can’t do it. You don’t know how, which breeds more uncertainty. The most successful people don’t start with how because no one knows how. Plenty of successful people have no idea what they’re doing!
When your what and why are strong enough, a level of certainty in your nervous system will help you achieve your goal and inspire others to participate. Individuals do not do moonshot life goals. Individuals can stimulate these goals, but seeing it through takes a team – an army of people. So watch out for the tyranny of how. Get your what and why so strong that it creates certainty in your body.
And if you don’t know how to start, just start!
Success breeds momentum
Have you ever heard the phrase, “The rich get richer and the poor get poorer?” It isn’t necessarily about finances. Think of happy people; they tend to get happier. And the same goes for sad people. There’s a cycle to it: the “Success Cycle.”
Achieving your life goals starts with potential. You have unlimited potential. Yet most people’s results don’t reflect that because they don’t believe in themselves. If you don’t have certainty that something will work, you don’t take action because you don’t think you’ll get results. Then you justify that you’ve done enough. But this isn’t tapping into your full potential. As your belief in your idea or goal becomes poorer, you get poor results, reiterating your original belief that it won’t work. This limits your potential, action and results in an endless cycle.
But it works the other way as well…
When you create certainty, not a fake optimism, but a true certainty in your core, you tap into massive potential and massive action, which = massive results. This process affirms your own belief and creates an upward spiral.
You may wonder how you can change your certainty about something you’ve never done before.
Take athletes, for example. Have you ever watched a player shoot a free throw or a kicker go to make a field goal, and you know they’ll miss? It’s because you sensed the uncertainty in their physiology. So how can you create certainty?
You produce a vivid, clear and emotionally associated result in your mind first.
Your brain doesn’t know the difference. You’ll see athletes do this all the time in practice. They’ll make the shot repeatedly in their mind. Give yourself the experience over and over again so vividly and certainty will follow.
What extraordinary achievements can you make happen for yourself and our world by thinking big? What goal can you bring more certainty to? Where can you start today, my friend?
Here’s to making the impossible possible.