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January 6, 2020

A new year, a new decade!

Below is a lesson from Brian Johnson’s Optimize +1 on goal setting, as well as our key learning.

The Blue Courage team is dedicated to continual learning and growth.  We have adopted a concept from Simon Sinek’s Start With Why team called “Learn, Share, Grow”.  We are constantly finding great articles, videos, and readings that have so much learning.  As we learn new and great things, this new knowledge should be shared for everyone to then grow from.


Warren Buffett on Goal Setting – 3 Steps to Clarity

Brian Johnson

Optimize +1

In Born for ThisChris Guillebeau tells us that, according to legend, Warren Buffet once gave a struggling friend a three steps process for setting goals. Here’s the quick look.

1. Start by writing down 25 things you’d like to do in your life.
2. Circle the Top 5 goals.
3. Throw away the other 20 goals and focus on tasks that relate to the Top 5.

As Chris says: “The principle is that you can’t work hard on 25 important things at once. You might think that the other 20 are still important, just not as important as the top five. But no — Buffett’s advice is to run away from the non-circled items as fast as you can. By choosing only five life goals, you’ll be far more invested in achieving them.”

If you’re feeling so inspired, bust out a piece of paper. Write down 25 things you’d like to do in your life. Then take a moment to identify the 5 that REALLY matter. Then have the courage to cross out all the other stuff and/or see how they fit into a coherent pattern over an extended period of time.

When I do the exercise, I see the different things I want to do in my life falling into different buckets (and different time frames). Of course, I orient around The Big 3: Energy + Family + Service.

So, it’s fun to see stuff like “Feel energized everyday,” “Become a world-class Spartan athlete,” and “Live to 100” neatly fall under “Energy.”

While “Be married for 50+ years,” “Be BFFs with Emerson + Eleanor,” “Help Alexandra and Emerson and Eleanor actualize their potential” fall under “Family.”

Then stuff like “Create 10,000 +1s,” “Create 1,000+ PhilosophersNotes,” and “Help 1m+ people Optimize their lives so we can change the world together” fall under “Service.”

What happens when YOU do that exercise?

Here’s to getting clarity one little self-awareness exercise at a time!

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Key Learnings:

  • 3 step process for setting goals:
    1. Start by writing down 25 things you’d like to do in your life.
    2. Circle the Top 5 goals.
    3. Throw away the other 20 goals and focus on tasks that relate to the Top 5.
  • By choosing only five life goals, you’ll be far more invested in achieving them.
  • Have the courage to cross out all the other stuff and/or see how they fit into a coherent pattern over an extended period of time.