When I think of goal setting I’m often reminded of the story of Warren Buffett’s private pilot, Mike Flint. James Clear has a great summary of the story.
Essentially Buffett encourages Flint to write down his top 25 career goals. After writing these 25 down Buffett instructs Flint to circle his top five goals.
Then comes this powerful exchange:
Flint: “Well, the top 5 are my primary focus, but the other 20 come in a close second. They are still important so I’ll work on those intermittently as I see fit. They are not as urgent, but I still plan to give them a dedicated effort.”
Buffett: “No. You’ve got it wrong, Mike. 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.”
Mike is correct.
James Clear has an excellent take on this little three-step mental workout from the Oracle of Omaha himself.
And in his post on the subject, James goes into a tiny bit more detail than most about the subject.
Trust me, it’s worth a look.