I used science to conquer every personal goal easily and here’s how you can too

Photo by Yosef Futsum on Unsplash

“WOOP” your way to success, the fastest and easiest method to accomplish your deepest desires.

Trouble with setting goals, and then never getting around to it? Or that when you actually get working on it, but something distracts you? Don’t worry, friend, I’ve been there too many times. Sleeping through the 10 alarms I had set for 6 AM (someone please help me with waking up early), missing guitar practice three days out of a week and opting to splurge on some less-than-ideal-for-a-diet snacks were some of the things I did before I watched a free course and discovered these two methods, which I will tell you about, of actually realizing your ambition and making it so that you follow the path of least resistance to achieving them.

1) “WOOP”

I learnt about this technique in the Science of Well-being course, where it was discussed as a way to achieve that what we really want in life. Going back to the notes I had made during watching the videos, I see that I have completely broken it down into four parts, which I will tell you now.

What is “WOOP’? might be your first question. It’s a pretty strange sounding acronym which I too was confused about, but what it actually stands for is-

1) Wish

2) Outcome

3) Obstacle

4) Plan

Let’s tackle this one by one, shall we?

i) Wish; choose your goal

There’s something called a creative mechanism in your subconscious mind that is built for success(read this awesome book if you want to know more). It works only when you give it a goal to achieve. Let’s use this secret technique to help you achieve success.

What you want to do is select a particular goal that you want to accomplish, and set it down somewhere so that you remember. Keep in mind that it should be realistic and somewhat challenging. The time it might take to achieve it will not matter.

Example:- “I want a thousand followers on Medium.”

ii) Outcome; visualize the outcome

Recent studies have found that the practice of visualization is very powerful. Many successful athletes have revealed that they have visualized their success before they actually win, how cool is that?

Here comes the good part. Imagine how it would feel to finally tick that goal off your to do list. I want you to feel how it would impact your well-being, how ecstatic you would feel at the moment and I want you to savor it.

Example:- “I feel like I’m a great writer and many people enjoy reading my articles, finding value in the words I type.”

iii) Obstacle; note the distractions

When you’re dreaming about hitting your goal, it can be easy to forget what can also prevent you from doing that. If we focus some time to think about the obstacles, I guarantee you the success rate of you achieving your goal will be above 80%.

Some questions you might want to ask yourself are “What are the personal obstacles that prevent me from achieving your goal? What’s standing in the way between me and my goal?” Visualize this obstacle in your mind.

Example:- “I feel tired after coming home from college and just don’t have the energy to write. / I feel lazy after watching YouTube for an hour.”

iv) Plan; overcome the obstacles

Now, here’s the actual brainy stuff you have to do. Make a plan to overcome the obstacles that you have thought about above. What will you do when you feel that very thing stopping you from achieving your goals?

Create a clear if/then plan and visualize it in your mind. This makes it so that your automatic system in your brain, which monitors habits, recognizes this as a response to an already familiar cue.

Example:- “If I feel myself about to watch an hour of YouTube, I will take a walk outside, and immediately come back in to resume my Medium story.”

2) Situational Report

Situational report is a rather fancy word that stands for something very simple; perceiving possible cues that can take you to the needed endpoint and placing them in a good spot.

Keep the musical instrument in your room so that you remember to practice it. The presence of that cue is what triggers your brain to do what you want it to do. Make it more visible and even more convenient so that you are reminded to do it again.

In a nutshell,

  • Wish for attaining a goal.
  • Outcome to be visualized.
  • Obstacles to be visualized.
  • Plan to overcome obstacles.

And lastly, as a side note,

  • Change your environment to make it support triggers for good habits.

Thanks for reading this article! It seems some sort of order is coming back to my life after using WOOP and situational report. I finally hit my first ever PR of waking up at 6 after two weeks of consistent trying, and I am so ever grateful for it. EXCEPT FOR THE FACT THAT I SLEPT AGAIN AFTER TURNING THE ALARM OFF.

As an additional resource, I would like to add this so that you can try out your first WOOP online.

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