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Blind Ambition


UNDERSTANDING BLIND AMBITION

In their lives and careers, people do not know what challenges they might encounter. They do not know when critics will appear to plant seeds of doubt. It is the people with blind ambition, those who feel an unwavering desire to overcome all the obstacles, who reach their fullest potential. These people also make up their own minds about what they will accomplish and continually ignore their discouragers as they repeatedly achieve their goals. These people are serving Indian Army, Indian Navy and Indian Airforce. Prism Training & facilitating people serving nation and now ready to take up second inning in corporate world and now ready to embark new journey with Blind Ambition....... having FUEL, FIRE, BLAZE


FUEL, FIRE, BLAZE People with blind ambition know that they can realize their ambitions, and they understand that setting goals is the powerful catalyst that can get them there. They also realize that only goals with the following three characteristics can their boost performances:

1. Specific. Precisely defined goals result in significantly higher levels of performance than vaguely defined goals.

2. Difficult. The best goals are stretch goals, which require people to deliver higher levels of performance to achieve them.

3. Group-centric. When people work in groups, they should set goals that maximize the individual contributions of each group member. Once people understand that specific, difficult, and group-centric goals must be set, they can develop fuel, fire, blaze goal hierarchies that have the following three levels:

  1. At the bottom of the hierarchy are fuel goals, which provide the foundation for higher-level goals. Fuel goals consist of the day-to-day tasks that people will need to engage in and finish to get the rest of the hierarchy in motion.

  2. In the middle of the hierarchy are fire goals, which are the milestones required to make the highest-level goals come true. Fire goals must be essential to supporting the highest-level goals and they must be things that the goal setters feel strongly about.

  3. Blaze goals are the highest-level goals. Blaze goals allow people to structure their lives around things they feel truly passionate about. Blaze goals must transcend external validation and must not be measured against other people’s standards.

DEFINE YOUR LIMITS : Establishing a fuel, fire, blaze goal hierarchy is an excellent first step toward goal achievement, but barriers do exist. People create their own beliefs about the world around them and about their places within it. These perceived limitations serve to protect people from the pain of failure, but they also stop people from making attempts to achieve their goals. Fortunately, perceived limitations can be removed. One way for people to remove perceived limitations is to identify the limitations they place on themselves and then ignore or abandon them altogether. For limitations that are harder to eliminate, people must adopt new habits. New habits can be formed by studying what needs to be learned and then practicing new skills repeatedly. By creating habits that support the goals they hope to achieve, people can remove the perceived limitations that deter them from success and move on to becoming true Iron Men and Iron Women.

BE AN IRON MAN OR IRON WOMAN : It takes the characteristics of Iron Men and Iron Women–mental toughness, persistence, and perseverance–to achieve the highest-level personal and business blaze goals. It also takes grit and self-control. Grit is the tendency to sustain interest in and effort toward long-term goals. Self-control is the voluntary regulation of behavioral, emotional, and attentional impulses. People who wish to improve their grit while also developing their self-control can focus on improving in the following five areas:

1. Courage. People cannot allow the fear of failure to keep them from taking risks.

2. Conscientiousness. Conscientiousness is most closely related to grit, and people must tap into the conscientiousness that gets them to step outside of their baseline routines.

3. Follow-through. People must make long-term commitments and work hard to follow through on them.

4. Resilience. People must remain optimistic and confident. They must also be creative in finding new paths to achieving their goals when other paths do not lead where they want to go.

5. Excellence. People must realize that they do not have to be perfect. Instead of perfection, they must strive for excellence in all they do. Iron Men and Iron Women not only work hard to cultivate the grit and self-control required to achieve blaze goals–they also understand that they must stay current in the fast-paced work environment and prepare for future challenges. People must follow this lead and embrace lifelong learning and self-education.

ABIDE THE ROOT LINE : The root line is the shortest possible distance that a course can be run. By not running the shortest possible distance, people expend unnecessary time and energy to achieve the same result. When people run the root line, they focus their efforts on the goal at hand and make every action have a high impact. Abiding the root line requires focus, but focus can be difficult for people to achieve in a world where many things are competing for their attention. Fortunately, focus can be learned. For example, people can improve their focus by dividing their days or weeks into individual blocks of time that have clear objectives. Or, when people are juggling multiple tasks they can dedicate 20 minutes to a single task before moving on to the next one. Keeping on the shortest course to goal achievement also requires that people do research. People must research which data points will inform their goals. This data must be specific to each goal setter, focusing on his or her personal history, experience level, available time, and access to information. Using specific data along with focus and willpower will propel people along the root line and across the finish line.

DON’T STOP UNTIL YOU CROSS THE FINISH LINE : Setting fuel, fire, and blaze goals is great, but without follow through, all the effort and hard work put into them will be for nothing. Most people do not achieve their goals because they procrastinate, or put off doing an important task until a later time. When people procrastinate when it comes to completing the tasks most important to them, they may never cross the finish line. If they do, it could be late or with incomplete results. Fortunately, the following seven-step approach can help people break the procrastination habit:

  1. Identify the most important priorities.

  2. Determine the first steps in working toward the completion of the most important priorities.

  3. Commit to start the effort at a defined day and time and to continue the effort for a specific period of time.

  4. Break tasks into manageable pieces that can be completed quickly and easily.

  5. Start the first steps at the exact dates and times set on the calendar.

  6. Continue working on the tasks for the period of time set on the calendar.

  7. Reassess tasks and their relative positions on the list of priorities.

Once the procrastination habit is broken, people must continue to focus their full efforts toward achieving their goals. The following four things can keep people focused on their goals until they are achieved:

1. Answer the “why” question. Success requires a direct and emotional connection to a goal. To build this connection, people must get in touch with their emotions and understand why certain things are important to them.

2. Make an attempt. Doing things that are worthwhile requires effort. It can be difficult to know where to start, so taking the first step is the hardest part. By making the first attempt and facing their discomfort, people can move forward and get closer to their end goals.

3. Visualize the result. Visualization allows people to prepare their minds for follow-through to success. People must prepare for the unexpected by mentally running through all scenarios. Then, when something does happen, the response will be trained and automatic.

4. Get moving. When people are struggling to get going, they must embrace any reason to get physically moving. Moving accomplishes several goals. It provides a mini-break from the task at hand, rejuvenates the energy system and ability to focus, and reminds people of how capable they are of achieving their goals. By cultivating the tools needed to maintain focus and avoid procrastination, people can cross the finish line and develop confidence in themselves.

BET ON YOURSELF : Fear is a part of life. Fear can protect people from things that can harm them, but it can also keep people from things that may be good for them. What people tend to fear most is the failure that might be experienced when they take on new tasks or do something that they believe will put them at risk either personally or career-wise. However, people must take on occasional risks if they want to succeed in their business and personal lives. After people decide to face failure, they should place many small bets on themselves. Small bets mean less risks, which means people can be more agile when bets do not work out the way they hoped. When fear of failure is preventing people from taking risks, they can do five things:

1. Change their attitudes. People must realize that everybody fails on their way to achieving goals, but the faster they fail, the sooner their goals will be achieved.

2. Worry less about what others think. Misplaced worry prevents people from taking risks or trying new things.

3. Do their homework. Success comes to those who put time into everything that is required to get to the finish line.

4. Do not be afraid to ask others for help and support. Enlisting help and support from others makes what a person wants to do seem less scary.

5. Start small. People must take small risks that result in incremental victories. These incremental victories can be built upon to progress into larger victories. It takes courage for people to bet on themselves. They must know all the facts, be self-confident, and be willing to fight for what they know is right. Everybody experiences fear and self-doubt, but when people bet on themselves, they grow their resilience, create opportunities, and achieve their greatest goals.

LIVE YOUR CORE VALUES : Values are the principles and standards of behavior that a person follows. Core values are those that are considered to be the most fundamental and important; these are the values that should never be ignored or violated. Core values are what serve as a foundation to refocus the heart, mind, and body toward power and ability. When people’s values are not in sync with their goals, tasks, and actions, accomplishing day-to-day goals becomes more difficult. It is important for people to practice self-reflection, live their core values every day, and be a constant example for others in their professional and personal lives. Not only can staying committed to core values inspire others, people with core values can also stay more resilient in times of trouble.

BE RESILIENT : People are constantly being pushed, so they must have the resilience to bounce back and keep moving forward. The opportunities to be resilient are boundless, and the capacity to rise to the occasion is limitless. It is up to individuals when, where, and how to meet the challenges that stand between them and their goals. Building resilience is an ongoing process that takes time and effort. People can build their resilience by following 10 steps:

1. Make connections. To build resilience, people must build strong connections with coworkers, colleagues, friends, family members, and others.

2. Avoid seeing crises as insurmountable problems. People must realize that every crisis can be addressed, dealt with, and solved with the application of brainpower, expertise, time, and money.

3. Accept that change is a part of living. Everything changes, and by accepting change and modifying their behaviors, people can take control of their environments.

4. Move toward goals. When people move toward their goals, they build small successes that create momentum.

5. Take decisive actions. Problems cannot be solved when people are not decisive, and problems do not go away when they are ignored.

6. Look for opportunity for self-discovery. Adversity tends to bring out the best in people, and people should look for opportunities for personal growth that may be experienced by overcoming challenges.

7. Nurture a positive self-image. People must push out negativity and build positivity within themselves.

8. Keep things in perspective. By staying cool, calm, and collected and keeping negative events in perspective, people will find that they are not ruled by them.

9. Maintain a hopeful outlook. People who maintain positive outlooks will have a greater chance of making things better.

10. Take care of ones’ self. When people take care of themselves by getting plenty of rest, exercise, proper nutrition, and avoiding dependency on drugs and alcohol, they build resilience. Resilience is a major factor in obtaining and maintaining credibility in the workplace. Daily challenges like interruptions, social conflicts, piles of work, and conflicting priorities provide opportunities to cultivate new skills and uncover new levels of resilience. When people have stronger resilience, they can focus on building greater willpower.

BUILD WILLPOWER AND GOAL-CENTRIC HABITS : Willpower is the ability to put the requirements of long-term goals above immediate gratification. Willpower requires people to always be aware of the consequences of their decisions, both big and small. However, people are not born with willpower–it is something that they must develop. To influence positive changes in their lives, people must do three things:

1. Establish motivation. Using the fuel, fire, blaze hierarchy establishes motivation.

2. Monitor behaviors that are relative to their goals. People must choose one or two behaviors that support their blaze goals and practice them.

3. Develop willpower. Willpower can be developed by implementing positive changes, exercising conscientious decision making, and committing to making life easier. Willpower can also be strengthened by cultivating healthy habits. People can create purposeful habits by committing to a few behaviors that will help them move toward their blaze goals. Then, they must commit to doing the new behaviors until they become automatic. When people establish strong willpower, they accomplish their current goals and move confidently toward the future.

THE ROAD AHEAD When people are facing challenges in the workplace or in life, they must tap into their inner strength and sense of ability. They must also use the tools available to them, invest in their core values, and cultivate their own convictions. By moving toward achieving their goals, people will begin to feel inspired and develop an appetite for their own blind ambition.

Blind Ambition makes a compelling case for the integration of a unique fuel, fire, blaze approach to goal setting. World champion paratriathlete and award-winning engineer Patricia Walsh provides the principles that anybody can utilize to set and consistently achieve high goals. The book provides practical, hands-on advice gathered from Walsh’s numerous experiences competing as a world-champion athlete and working as a top engineer at Microsoft. Each chapter includes a checklist of key points to improve comprehension. The book would be relevant to those who are interested in achieving their goals both at work and in their personal lives. It is divided into several chapters, but because each chapter builds upon principles explained in the last, it is advisable to read the book in chapter order.

In short, In today’s rapidly changing world, people are constantly faced with negativity, uncertainty, and self-doubt. There are 10 things people can do to overcome their challenges and realize their greatest ambitions:

1. Understand blind ambition. Blind ambition is an attachment to the idea that, despite the circumstances, any ambitions can be realized. People with blind ambition know how to face their critics and insecurities to achieve their goals.

2. Establish a fuel, fire, blaze hierarchy. Only goals following this hierarchy can boost people’s performances. Fuel goals consist of the daily tasks needed to engage the hierarchy.Fire goals consist of the milestones needed to support the blaze goals. Blaze goals transcend external validation and allow people to structure their lives around the things they feel truly passionate about.

3. Define the limits. Perceived limitations can be very powerful, but people can remove them by creating healthy habits that support their goals.

4. Be an Iron Man or Iron Woman. To achieve personal and professional goals, people must have grit. This ability to sustain interest in long-term goals can be improved when people focus on building their courage, conscientiousness, follow-through, resilience, and drive for excellence.

5. Abide the root line. The root line is the shortest possible distance that a course can be run. When people learn to remove distractions and stay on course, all of their actions have high impact.

6. Cross the finish line. Procrastination causes many people to put aside the important tasks that are needed to move them forward. People must learn to overcome procrastination and keep working toward their goals until they have completed them.

7. Make bets. Facing their fears and taking risks allow people to move closer to their goals. To overcome fear, people must worry less about what other people think, ask others for help, and make bets on themselves.

8. Live the core values. People must define their values and purposes. These guide the day-to-day decisions that will help them overcome obstacles.

9. Be resilient. People are constantly being pushed, so they must be able to bounce back. To build resilience, people should make strong connections with others and accept that change is simply a part of life.

10. Build willpower and goal-centric habits. Willpower is the ability to put the requirements of long-term goals ahead of immediate gratification. When people develop willpower by implementing positive changes, they learn to make those changes repeatedly over time

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