What distinguishes an expert from a beginner is the number and extent of accomplishments in a field. A master in a discipline no longer has any real goal per se, other than to continue to live and “breathe” his art. His deliberate practice has enabled him to render all the skills associated with his discipline unconscious. His transformation has taken place over time in such a way that his art has become second nature. To reach such a level one must enjoy the process of acquisition, which can be achieved through a kind of gamification of which goal setting is the most common manifestation.
You set goals, not because achieving them is the end goal, but rather because you are going to have to become a special person in order to achieve them.
Let’s look at three important ideas about goals:
There are two types of goals: those that have a material, tangible manifestation (visible to all) and those that are achieved in an intimate way and most often go unnoticed by inexperienced eyes
The achievement of an intimate objective is inevitably accompanied by the materialization of tangible objectives in the medium or long term (type 1 collateral effects)
The materialization of a tangible objective in a category is often accompanied by a proliferation effect (type 2 collateral effects)
Intimate and tangible objectives
These correspond to moral or spiritual objectives. They are called intimate because they are worked on in the heart and mind and do not have an immediate tangible materialization. Intimate transformations are slow because they correspond to deep things. They therefore imply work over time. The intimate objectives are more vague, they can correspond to values that one wishes to develop, ideas that one wishes to embody. Whether it is virtue or spiritual concepts, they nevertheless imply concrete actions whether they take the form of habits or punctual tasks.
These are the most popular goals because they are the most visible. They can be defined concretely or in figures. They can be a sum of money, a desired object, a trip that you want to take or a lifestyle that you want to achieve.
Type 1 collateral effects
If you cultivate values deeply, they will sooner or later have a concrete materialization. It is like the seed of a plant that is watered regularly, after a while it will sprout and take shape. Since collateral effects take time, it is not uncommon for people to give up along the way. This is why it is more than necessary to develop patience in order to reap the fruits of one’s labor like the ripe mango falls from the tree. When you have worked enough on yourself, you have developed your level of consciousness. This is necessarily accompanied in time by tangible achievements in line with your level. Essentially, there are no tangible goals in reality since they are only the consequence of an intangible goal. We use tangible objectives because we do not ask ourselves enough questions about our values and it is easier to define what we want to have than what we want to be.
The qualities you develop will accompany you wherever you go
The advantage of having intimate goals is that once they are achieved, they go with you wherever you go.
Type 2 collateral effects
Although tangible goals are only lower-level goals than intimate goals, they still give us meaning where we might see confusion at times in our lives. They can also have the perverse effect of reassuring us and evading the deeper questions of life. Thus, setting the goal of becoming famous prevents us from asking ourselves real questions about the meaning of life. As long as we have a rag waving over our heads, we continue to run like excited greyhounds chasing a decoy, forgetting the absurdity of such a race and the facticity of the prey. Since it is not easy to ask ourselves deep questions, we can be satisfied with having tangible objectives while not leaving aside the need to ask ourselves intimate questions later on.
Setting tangible goals to progress
Competition is stimulating, it allows us to progress by using narcissistic desires: it is because we want to love ourselves that we invent quests to pursue. Each challenge taken up constitutes as many reasons to love oneself. Even if these challenges can appear illusory, they rationalize our self-love.
This is another expression of the phrase “There is no love, only proof of love”.
It is therefore often because of a lack of self-esteem that we undertake audacious projects, which offer us the possibility of improving ourselves, which in itself constitutes a valid reason for self-esteem.
Nevertheless, without a deep reflection on the intimate objectives, we can be caught in the spiral of always seeking tangible objectives without ever finding serenity in a perennial way. One tangible success calling for another, in the end one leads an existence that is summed up as a flight from oneself.
A sufficient degree of maturity necessarily implies a reflection on values
To find serenity implies to resolve to resort to the development of our intimate qualities. To avoid this “short infernal pursuit”, it is welcome to ask ourselves about the meaning of life. This is a necessary step if we really want to find a life trajectory that is coherent and not a kind of permanent frenzy that poorly hides a form of absurdity or emptiness.