“Those we love never truly leave us. There are things that death cannot touch.”
I am pretty sure that you are aware that setting goals is an important part of life. Goal setting guides and keeps you focused.
Having goals could actually activate new habits and actions in you.
Setting goals can be an exhilarating experience. It gives you a purpose, a clear intention and creates the impression of progress.
But goals have its downside. You might end up with too many things you want to accomplish in your life.
However, there is this ONE list that can help you create the results you desire in your life. Before I share the details of this list, allow me to tell you a little story.
This is about the one thing that stands in the way of attaining your objectives:
The dilemma of having too many options.
If you’ve too many goals, you may become overwhelmed, and your goals may be lost or abandoned after a while.
When you’re faced with too many options, you’ll experience what’s known as choice paralysis.
If this happens, you may not be able to achieve any of your objectives. Imagine standing in an ice cream aisle in a store, unable to select between 35 different types of ice cream.
Making decisions can trigger unpleasant emotions, leading to decision fatigue or a delay in making the decision.
It leads to us having unrealistic expectations, second-guessing our actions before making them, and blaming our failures completely on ourselves.
Schwartz affirms that the lesser choice you have the better it is. Because when you have more choices, you make worse decisions. And too much choice leads to ‘choice paralysis’ which impedes you from making any decision at all.
Part of the human psyche is you tend to spend time mulling about the choices you did not pick. You grieve the more options you feel you’ve “missed out on,” rather than being pleased with the ones you’ve made.
Hence, choice paralysis can exhaust you to the point where you lack the energy to carry out the action.
When it comes to choices and priorities, no one does it better than the most successful investor on the planet. Warren Buffett has an incredibly simple yet effective tool that can help you achieve tremendous results in your life.
Warren Buffett’s simple 25/5 Rule is one technique that might assist you in making the best decisions. Whether you’re creating goals, prioritizing important activities, or just trying to live a happy life.
Warren Buffett’s 25/5 Rule can be traced back to a conversation between Buffett and the pilot of his private jet.
According to his pilot, Michael Flint, he asked Buffett how he could achieve his career goals more effectively. Buffett took him through a 3-step goal-setting process:
Flint was asked to spend some time thinking about the top 25 things he wanted to accomplish. After that, he is to write it down.
Next, Flint was to review the list he wrote. He must then decide on his top 5 goals. Once he has made his selection, he is to circle them.
At this point, Flint had two lists. He labeled the list with the 5 items circled as List A. The remaining 20 items on the list became List B.
At this point Buffett asked Flint how would he approach the two lists. Flint affirmed that he would begin working on List A straightaway since those are his top 5 goals.
When Buffett asked Flint about the List B, the 20 goals that were not selected. Flint replied that he would work diligently on List A and work on List B intermittently since they’re less urgent.
To which Buffett displayed his approach of saying ‘no’ to goals that take his attention away from his main focus:
“Everything you didn’t circle just became your Avoid-At-All-Cost list. No matter what, these things get no attention from you until you’ve succeeded with your top 5.”
Buffett’s formula for success is to stick to the ONE list that will bring tremendous results in your life. This will be List A, the one where you have selected your top 5 goals. Put your whole-hearted attention and focus on this list.
Life is about making choices. Or to put it in more appropriate terms – selecting the choices that matter most to you.
Even though the second list, List B meant something to you, it is not your priority at this moment. The 25/5 Rule calls for ruthless elimination. It is a choice forced upon you but for the greater good.
In an interview with Investment News, when asked about his secret to a consistent yearly increase in profits, Buffett answered:
“I’ve said ‘No’ more than any other time in my career.”
So, knowing when to say ‘no’ is the key to assuming control of your life. Even if it means saying ‘no’ to your not-so-essential goals.
You’ve just learned about the 25/5 Rule. And now that you’ve seen how it could affect your priorities and objectives, let me tell you another story.
In a story as told to CNBC, where curiosity about the 25/5 Rule led to this question for Buffett:
“Mr. Buffett, I’ve heard that one of your ways of focusing your energy is that you write down the 25 things you want to achieve, choose the top five and then avoid the bottom 20. I’m really curious how you came up with this and what other methods you use for prioritizing your desires?”
In which Buffett responded by saying:
“Well, I’m actually more curious about how you came up with it.”
That respond by Buffett brought with it a few moments of awkwardness followed by a bout of unrestrained laughter. But the fact is that even though 25/5 Rule did not originate from Buffett does not diminish its value.
The 25/5 Rule puts your top goals in perspective. It also makes you aware of where you should be focusing your efforts. But the rule in itself is just a guide.
The 25/5 Rule, in order to become a reality, requires your discipline, dedication, and extreme focus.
Buffett’s 25/5 Rule is not confined to goals alone. It’s about getting rid of distractions and putting your time and focus on the most important things in your life. And you can use this tool to many areas in your life.
You can apply this rule to maintain a healthy lifestyle by eliminating unhealthy habit. Your top 5 healthy habits could be regular exercise, eating balance meals, sleeping early, waking up early and meditation.
If you are running your own business, think about your top 25 business goals. Then, for the time being, choose the five that are most important to you.
Make it a priority to complete these 5 tasks and devote all of your attention to them.
This strategy can also be used for relationships, personal pursuits, and daily and weekly to-do lists.
By prioritizing your top 5 goals, you have eliminated unnecessary distractions and avoid spreading yourself too thin. You only have a limited time and energy.
Therefore, by doing this you have just created some extra time and energy for yourself.
In closing, here is a simple relaxation exercise to help you in concentration and focus. You can utilize this to give your subconscious mind a deeper purpose and to focus more intensely on your goals.
Use this script anywhere as long as you can find yourself a comfortable, quiet and secure spot.
Gently close your eyes and take a deep breath…with each breath you are feeling more and more comfortable and more and more relaxed…where ever you are now…you are feeling relaxed and because you are feeling so calm and at peace…
You can begin to realize…just how focused you are. Think about the lesson here today…this moment… about the list…the one that will bring amazing results in your life…and you will bring the intensity you need…to fulfill your goals…you are now the embodiment of a very focused person. . .
And whatever idea…project…goal…dream… that you take on…you are able to focus and concentrate easily…so easily that…no matter what distractions come your way…you are able to say ‘no’ to it…
You can start on any idea… project…goal…dream… you choose…and you will be able to put a 100 percent focus on it…you are able to block out other things and distractions…and just focus on that project… focus on that idea…
Focus on that dream or that goal… You are able to focus on anything you want to focus on.
As the days go by… your powers of concentration and focus grows…increasing each day…more and more… and you know that…you are a self-confident person…a winner… who accomplishes your goals…
You are very clear about…what you want out of life… and… you get what you want out of life…. your only limitation is your imagination…and…now… you now let your imagination go free…
You are becoming very focused…and you have this switch within you…that you can activate…whenever you need to be intensely focused…whenever you need to concentrate on…
And as you relax…you will allow only positive and winning thoughts to flow through your mind….and those positive and winning thoughts…will block out any distractions…anything that is unnecessary…such as…unnecessary situations…unnecessary ideas…
Your subconscious mind will block out anything that is not aligned with your goals…so that you can… just focus and concentrate on what you are doing… it can be anything at all…
That’s right… you can now imagine something you want to focus on…see yourself in the moment…in a very focused…relaxed mode… and in the midst of it all…you can see how calm and confident you are… and you are so filled with optimism… enthusiasm….and intense in the pursuit of your goals…
You can see yourself in your mind…and tell yourself that…you are a goal-oriented winner…see yourself having the self-discipline to stick with your goals until they are accomplished…
That relaxed…determined person that you are…. This…is how you will be from now on… and your life is a series of successes…
In order for you to get focused…all you need to do is…simply just say the word focus…your whole being in its entirety…will immediately become focused…
You will be able to focus on what you choose to be focus on…and concentrate for long periods of time…you have the ability to block out all unnecessary distractions… noise…people…things that don’t matter…So just relax now and realize just how powerful your ability to focus is…
From now on…you will feel an intense inner drive to reach your goals…to accomplish and to achieve… you will accomplish all of your goals…. you can literally accomplish anything…
Now…before you open your eyes…you know that with each passing day…you will become more and more confident…
And will be able to achieve your goals with ease…you will enjoy a greater feeling of wellbeing…greater self-control over your destiny…and greater control over your goals and achievements…
With all that feeling of confidence embedded within your subconscious mind…you are now ready to open your eye…so…when you are ready…you can slowly move out from this relaxation phase…and when you do…
You wake up and open your eyes…feeling safe…comfortable and secure…and full of optimism towards the future…