How to Use WAYPOINTs for Success

WAYPOINTS-FOR-SUCCESSI thinK it matters how you set your goals, if you truly want a successful life. While the SMART goal system is good, to me it’s not good enough. I prefer setting WAYPOINTs for success in life. In my previous posts, I showed you the WAYPOINT goal setting system.

On the worksheet (you can see it here) you follow each letter in WAYPOINT to arrive at a good, solid WAYPOINT statement. Next, in a clockwise direction, answer the “So What?” challenge.

So What?

So what if you achieve the WAYPOINT, so what if you don’t?  This is where you write the rewards you will receive from making your WAYPOINT and the consequences of not making it.  Think deeply rather than just writing the first thing that comes into your head.  In doing so, you are making an emotional connection with your WAYPOINT.  Emotion and motivation share the same root word.  It is almost impossible to be motivated without an emotional attachment.  Motivation means literally to be moved.  What is powerful enough to move you?

Why is it important?

Ask yourself this question five times.  Don’t take your first answer as good enough.  Again, we are building an emotional bond between you and your WAYPOINT, which can be extremely powerful.  Take the time to peel the layers of your reasoning back to expose the raw emotion that is powerful enough to get you moving.

Then, work your WAYPOINT through the planning steps: Time, Treasure, Talent, Manpower, Machinery, Providence and Stupidity.


Time is a stop/start proposition.  We are all busy people, with full careers and lives.  Setting a new course is going to take time.  Understanding what your priorities are is a good start, but when it gets around to actually DOING something, you are going to have to STOP doing something so that you can START doing what you really want to do.  An example of this could be “Stop watching “Chopped” on the Food Channel.” “Start exercising!”


What are the monetary impacts?  What is it going to cost you?  It could be minimal, or have a larger impact.  If larger, what are the sources of funding?  For instance, for a fitness WAYPOINT, one action might be to join a gym.  The cost for that needs to be factored in, even if it is a relatively small share of your wallet.  If your WAYPOINT is bigger, say buying or building a mountain home, setting a budget is important, but thinking how you are going to fund that budget is even more so.


What do you need to know?  What do you need to become an expert in?  If you are setting a nutrition WAYPOINT, shouldn’t you learn something about nutrition?  Everything that is worth doing has some knowledge component to it, whether gaining tribal, book or experiential knowledge.


Who are you going to get to help you?  It may be as simple as a spouse, a friend or an accountability partner, or it may be as complex as a department of the company.  Specifically identify the human resources you will need to achieve your WAYPOINT.


What are the physical resources you will need?  A forklift and racking?  A new machine?  A new pair of running shoes?  An app?  Machinery today is often technology—there is an app for that—that you will use in the pursuit of your WAYPOINT.  For instance, I use iRunner to track my workouts and keep me on course.  What are you going to need?


What happens if you are abundantly successful?  We don’t often think in terms of abundance, we just think about “getting there”.  We often think about what is going to go wrong rather than what is going to go right.  This is the space to think differently and think about abundant success.  What if you over-shoot your WAYPOINT?


This is where you put all the things that can go wrong, the mishaps, accidents, or mistakes.  What can derail you?  What is going to get in the way of your success?  What is going to block the path to your WAYPOINT?  Could it be an injury, a recession, a labor problem?  It could be something as simple as a weight WAYPOINT being derailed by chocolate.  By thinking about these things up front, you will know how to deal with them down the line.

What do you think about setting WAYPOINTS for your life and career? I’d love to hear from you. You can reach me here and on LinkedIn.

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