What are your goals?

Craig: You touched on some of your goals before, so I want to circle back to talking about what your goals are.

Adam: Sure.

Craig: You are obviously an extremely busy person. Do you set objective goals for yourself? By objective I mean “I’m gonna do 437 pushups in an hour by November 3rd.” Do you set objective goals, and how do you stay motivated on longer-term projects, whether they’re personal projects, work projects, PK Gen projects, and how do you measure your progress?

Adam: The answer to that is a surprising no, [00:13:00] and as much as any person will tell you that specific goal setting, smart goals starts with specific. So you should have specific goals set out, and there is absolutely truth to those methodologies. However, you have to know yourself, and you have to know what your motivations are. I happen to know that the more specific my goals are, the less motivated I get about them because I like to deviate from goals when I see an opportunity to do something a little bit different or a little bit better.

So I set broad goals. I say “I want [00:13:30] to be better at X,” for the purpose of example. I’d say “I want to be better at breathing while I’m moving. I want to be able to control my breath better during movement and not be panting and be out of breath. That’s a goal that I want to have accomplished soon.” I’ll set a goal like that for myself, and what that does is I’ll wake up in the morning and go “Okay, how do I want to go about this exactly?” I’ll say “Well, why don’t I start by going for a run and seeing what my breathing’s like and how many breaths per step and for how long I end up doing.” I’ll pay attention [00:14:00] to that and give it my full attention and intention.

At the end of that run I’ll go “Okay, that’s where I’m at.” Maybe it’s better than I thought, maybe it’s worse than I thought. Then I go from there. I go “Okay, how can I improve this?” I’ll go out and maybe do some route training or I’ll go swimming and discipline myself to only breathe on every four or sixth stroke for as long as I can, or I’ll do some breath holding training or Google how to improve your lung capacity. Having the freedom to investigate different opportunities not only gives me more knowledge, more experience, and more fun frankly, but it also [00:14:30] gives me the tools that I can then share with other people.

So, again, my motivation isn’t necessarily just to improve myself. It’s to gather resources that I can share with the community around me. I learn a lot more by leaving myself open than I do by going “Must do X plus B divided by C equals my end result.” Either I got it or I didn’t.

Craig: Okay, and then you probably wind up with a constellation of those little goals that you’re working on. So obviously you don’t just have two, you have 57 different [00:15:00] things that you’re going in different directions. If this one calls to you today, that’s where we’re going today.

Adam: That’s exactly right.

Craig: That’s great. People that I’ve talked to have very very different ways of answering questions about goals. I’m like “I have a millimeter ruler.”

Adam: As it should be, Craig. As it should be. We’re all different people and we’re all motivated by different things. Any behavioral psychologist will tell you that motivation is one of the greatest variances of human behavior. You just have to know yourself well enough to know what motivates [00:15:30] you because setting a specific goal might be exactly what you need, or it might be exactly what tears you down.

Craig: Yeah.

Adam: So you just have to know yourself.

Craig: That’s an excellent point.