260: Tools for Sticking with Your Biggest Goals with Dean Lindsay

By February 9, 2018Podcasts

 

 

Dean Lindsay shows how to achieve “PHAT” (Pretty, Hot And Tempting) goals by committing to them, strengthening reasons, and building true conviction.

You’ll Learn:

  1. Why it’s better to have real commitment rather than a good plan
  2. What it mean to be truly convicted of a goal’s value
  3. Dean’s six P’s of Progress

About Dean 

Dean Lindsay is hailed as an ‘Outstanding Thought Leader on Building Priceless Business Relationships’ by Sales and Marketing Executives International as well as a ‘Sales-and-Networking Guru’ by the Dallas Business Journal. His books, How to Achieve Big PHAT Goals, THE PROGRESS CHALLENGE: Working & Winning in a World of Change, and CRACKING THE NETWORKING CODE: 4 Steps to Priceless Business Relationships have sold over 100,000 copies worldwide and have been translated into Chinese, Hindi, Polish, Korean, Spanish and Greek.

Items Mentioned in this Show:

Dean Lindsay Interview Transcript

Pete Mockaitis
Dean, thanks so much for joining us here on the How To Be Awesome At Your Job podcast.

Dean Lindsay
Rock and roll. Thanks for having me, Pete.

Pete Mockaitis
We just discussed rock and roll and all of its implications. And so, well, I want to hear about you rocking and rolling, first of all. And how is it you ended up getting a role in the movie Twister? What’s the backstory? And how did that go for you?

Dean Lindsay
You know what’s funny? No one has ever asked me that.

Pete Mockaitis
That’s what we aspire to as podcasters. It’s awesome.

Dean Lindsay
That’s right. there’s actually not only about it, about being in it, but Bill Paxton had actually a great deal to do as a catalyst. I was in that for Big PHAT Goals being created. Yes, so Twister is a long, long time ago. So, back in the ‘90s, ’97 when Twister was, I was in an acting endeavor trying to become an actor, had a little bit of success in Walker, Texas Ranger in a couple of movies of the week.

Pete Mockaitis
Is that Chuck Norris? Oh, nice.

Dean Lindsay
Huh? Yeah, yeah, that’s right. Yes. Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Pete Mockaitis
Is it true the legends?

Dean Lindsay
He’s a cool kid. Yeah, that was a real fun experience. But the movie was being shot in Oklahoma, and I live in Texas, and they decided to have a casting possibility for Texas actors, and me and a buddy of mine drove up to Oklahoma City to audition, and I got the part. It was a really, really great experience. I was one of the bad guys driving the black vans, so I was there the entire time.

What I was going to say about Bill Paxton, two things. I write about Bill Paxton in my first book Cracking the Networking CODE because Bill Paxton was an amazing leader, an amazing happy gregarious man. And I wrote about him in Cracking the Networking CODE as just somebody who you just wanted to be around that guy. He was always there to help, he was always there to lift everybody up.

When we were making Twister the director of photography and the director had a falling out to the degree where the director of photography quit. And when he quit he took a third of the crew with him, and so we didn’t know if they were going to finish the movie, and a lot of the big stars actually went home. They went back to California or they went to New York City.

Bill Paxton did not. He stayed in Ponca City, Oklahoma at the Holiday Inn and he rallied the troops, and he would be out there playing touch football during the day, and he’d be leading conversations, and to evening, encouraging everybody to, “Stay, stay, stay. We’re going to get this movie made. We’re going to get this movie made.” And, sure enough, it did. It happened.

And then, in reference to Big PHAT Goals, I was working on Big PHAT Goals, How to Achieve Big PHAT Goals, off and on for about a year and a half and I had a cover design, and it was kind of slowly moving into existence. But on February 26 of 2017 Bill Paxton died. And when he died it was on my daughter’s birthday.

When he died and she came in and told me, I was like, “Man, Bill Paxton, a man who so full of life, who has no health scare, nothing that I had heard about or whatever, is just gone and it’s just over.” It just spurred me into action, and said, “You don’t get to throw or something that you’re going to do later down the road.” And so, I moved Big PHAT up to the very top of my list and got it out into the world.

Pete Mockaitis
Well, that’s inspiring. Thank you. And a good reminder. Not easy to forget. Well, now tell us, what is this book How to Achieve Big PHAT Goals all about? And why is it so important to you to have the world have this?

Dean Lindsay
That’s a great question, Pete. You know, there are a lot of goal books out there, and this book really is a companion book to any goal-setting book, to any goal-planning book, to your daily planner, to whatever that you have, and this is not to compete with smart goals or anything like that. The biggest challenge that we have to goal achievement is not goal setting; it’s goal commitment.

Big PHAT Goals is about goal commitment. Especially at the beginning of the year, we set these big, lofty goals that we get tingles about, “Whoa,” you’re telling people about, “What we’re going to do…” and then we don’t forget that we’re going to do them. What happens is we don’t stay connected to why, so that goal is big enough but it’s not phat enough, and that’s the phat in the Big PHAT Goal’s acronym is how we must remind ourselves and continually strengthen the reasons behind the action.

Shakespeare said, “Strong reasons make strong actions.” Not just reasons; strong reasons. And that goes also with the competition of what you choose to do with your time as well. If you’re not pursuing your goals, you’re still pursuing something, and you’re pursuing something for a reason. And if you’re pursuing something other than your goals that means that those other things weighed heavier or phatter in your mind at that moment.

Not at the end of the day when you later hit on the pillow, and you think, “Oh, what I should’ve done,” or not in the beginning of the day when you’re rolling out your lofty plans and what you’re going to do that day; but in the nanosecond. Commitment is a moment-by-moment decision. And you can say you’re committed to something, but it’s not about saying it; it’s about consistently doing actions that you believe are going to take closer to your goals.

Big phat goals, How to Achieve Big PHAT Goals is a goal commitment program because if you stay committed to your goals, I guarantee you, you will get a lot closer to achieving them than if you have all the plans in the world. It’s not a plan you need; it’s commitment.

Pete Mockaitis
Okay. Now, you keep saying phat, and so in text form, for the listener, you spell that out P-H-A-T. And I don’t remember what the movie trailer was but I feel like, when I was a kid, I heard repeatedly there’s a movie where a guy said that some woman was phat, and she was alarmed, like, “What?” And he said, “P-H-A-T, pretty hot and tempting.” And she said, “Oh, okay.”

Dean Lindsay
Good job.

Pete Mockaitis
What movie was that? I couldn’t find it.

Dean Lindsay
That was Money Talks, and it’s Chris Tucker.

Pete Mockaitis
Okay. Now, we know.

Dean Lindsay
Yeah, Chris Tucker, 1997. He was supposedly the first person to say it, and you’re also the very first person to ever to have that even that much information. No one else.

Pete Mockaitis
You see, Dean, I do my research.

Dean Lindsay
Yeah, way to be a kid in the ‘90s. Yes, so that basically, I had the program. Back in 2001 I wrote How to Achieve Big Fat Goals, F-A-T, and FAT was all about making your goal heavy in your mind. So, the premise was basically this aim. But then, when I found out what phat stood for, that it stands for pretty, hot and tempting, I said, “Wow, that’s exactly the same point I’m making.”

When we choose to pursue some other goal other than our goals, at that moment is prettier, hotter and more tempting to us. Now, you can say it’s not but it is at that moment. Then we go deeper into how we make something pretty, hot and tempting, I know by concept of progress versus chance, but that’s basically it. Yeah, it’s kind of cool to change the letters but if that was all I was doing in this book, was just doing a little spelling, have a little spelling fun with the word phat, I’d be really embarrassed.

This book is all about that. The whole concept of this book, the way to armor up, the way to compete and go to combat, really, with all the marketing of how you could, would, should choose to invest your time is to remember. You see is you got to remember you got to make your goals phatter. Yes, that’s a cool thing to do, right?

The only problem that we have, Pete, is that we don’t have like one great thing to do and a whole bunch of crappy things to do. We have a bunch of good things, there’s so much good choices, right? There’s so much good choices and there’s the one, of all the things that you could do that would move you closer to your goals, and they’re going to be phat.

The other options are going to be phat. I’m not saying they’re not phat. We need to be realistic, they are phat. Netflix is not making un-phat shows to watch. Every show is designed to be phat, right? Binge watching Orange is the New Black, you can’t say that is a bad use of your time, right? You can say it’s not your choice use of your time, but thousands of people do it. But is that going to move you closer to your big phat goals?

So, that’s what I’m trying to say here in this book, is people lots of times who went out to setting a goal and then trying to get a plan, but what they really need is commitment. Because when you implement a plan you’re going to run up against roadblocks and difficulties and challenges and guess your plan was not very good. And so, now, you got to have to fall back on that commitment to pull back together and try again.

Pete Mockaitis
Okay. I’m sold. Let’s talk about it. How do you amp up the commitment, I’d say, up front and then in the moment when you’re tempted with the Netflix program or whatever it may be?

Dean Lindsay
Everything. Anything. It could be anything.

Pete Mockaitis
Yeah.

Dean Lindsay
Well, I love a quote from Pat Benatar, “With the power of commitment there is no sacrifice.”

Pete Mockaitis
Okay.

Dean Lindsay
With the power of commitment. No, I’m sorry, not the power of commitment; with the power of conviction. Sorry, I knew I said it all too simply. With the power of conviction there is no sacrifice. With the power of conviction there is no sacrifice. Now, to be convicted, that means you know your New Year’s resolution or the goal you set that is, of everything you could choose to do, that is it. You are convicted.

Pete Mockaitis
Okay, let’s wait here. You know. What is it that you know?

Dean Lindsay
That the goal you have for your life is the best choice of all the other things you could choose to do with your time.

Pete Mockaitis
All right. I love it. Now, we’re getting somewhere. Now, this is a high bar that most goals don’t reach.

Dean Lindsay
They can reach but that just means we have to dig into the why. We have to continually say and think of all the different benefits that’s how you get the power of the conviction. I love this phrase from Pat Benatar because you just don’t get conviction. How do you get conviction? It’s about the pain of actually digging into it.

And in the book I lay out what I call the six P’s of progress, and it’s really kind of the big psychology. I studied Dr. Viktor Frankl’s work, local therapy, and that’s kind of what spurred me to create the six P’s of progress because local therapy is all about meaning therapy and how we derive meaning. And so, I looked at Dr. Viktor Frankl’s concept of meaning, and I kind of took it into the business acumen and tried to kind of chew on it for a while, and I came up with what I call the six P’s of progress.

And that is that everything we do, when I say we, I mean the big huge collectively; everybody listening to this, everybody who’s working, sleeping, whatever. Everybody. Everything. Everything we do, consciously or subconsciously we do because we believe the perceived consequences of those actions are that we will fill the unique right mixture of pleasure, peace of mind, profit, prestige, pain avoidance, and power.

And what that means, Pete, is that whatever goal, and let me say it this way, if somebody gives you an idea of something you could do, choose to do it with your time, listen to the way they say it because they’re going to say something, “It’ll be good for you, you’ll enjoy it, it’ll be fun.” Well, that goes right back to the six P’s of progress. It’ll bring you pleasure.

Now, I’m not saying it won’t bring pleasure. It probably will bring you pleasure. But is it bringing you more pleasure than you staying on task of what you were doing? There’s short-term pleasure and there’s long-term pleasure. But all marketing comes down to the six P’s of progress: pleasure, peace of mind, profit, prestige, pain avoidance and power.

And there are many, many people and professional organizations and associations, and commercials, everything, trying to get you to adapt a goal, trying to get you to pursue their goals.

Pete Mockaitis
Like, I kind of buy that product because that’s going to make me money, it’s going to be a lot of fun, it’s going to attract a phat lady or gentleman into life in or around you.

Dean Lindsay
Right. Right. Right. And so, if you’re going to pursue your goal then your goal has to be phatter.

Pete Mockaitis
All right.

Dean Lindsay
Or you’re going to be more susceptible to those other things. So, what I encourage people in my workshops or in the book to do is to actually go through, and don’t just – I call it goal-crafting – don’t just craft a goal but actually go through a few exercises of, “How will this goal bring me pleasure? How will this goal bring me peace of mind? How accomplishing this goal…?” You see what I’m saying? So, that when somebody else has other choices of what you could choose to do with your time, or even you, you have weighed your goal down so much that, yes, those other things are still good, just not as good.

Pete, let me tell you something you might not have heard before. You nor I can do or have it all.

Pete Mockaitis
Right.

Dean Lindsay
We cannot.

Pete Mockaitis
I’m convinced. Well, indeed, I think Paula Pant says it well in terms of you can’t afford anything, you can’t afford everything, and I’m right with it when it comes to opportunity costs and that.

Dean Lindsay
Same thing.

Pete Mockaitis
And so, then, I’m really connecting with your sentence there that you are convicted when you know the goal you’ve selected is the top best use of your time. And I think that is absolutely true, and I’ve been there before, and so, you gave us a bit of a framework for the six P’s. And so, then, how do we go about doing the hard thinking, the soul searching, the questioning, the exploration, the decision making to arrive at that place of conviction? So, the six P’s is a handy framework, but I guess I’m thinking, again, there’s a billion potential uses of your time. So, how do we zero in on the one thing?

Dean Lindsay
That’s a great question. I’m not sure, are you asking about the one goal or the one action?

Pete Mockaitis
Well, I’m thinking about the one goal. Or there are multiple goals, you tell me. You know, in your framework, are you thinking about use this for one, two, three, four, five goals or priorities of your life? Or how are you envisioning the load of phat goals a life can handle?

Dean Lindsay
Yeah. You know, I kind of purposely stayed away from that aspect because it works on any level, whatever goal you want to have, if it’s a big goal as far as, I mean, it could be as simple as choosing to eat healthy, you know. Or it could be as much as trying to get a master’s degree but the same workings go into it as far as continually selling yourself on the benefits of that goal.

I did not write Big PHAT Goals to have any kind of sway over anybody on what they should do except to say that if you want to control your mind and your choices, control your why, control your understanding of, and be a lot more realistic about other people’s perceived benefits for the actions they want you to take, “Come out with us tonight. Come out.”

“You know, I plan on getting to bed early,” because you’re going to get up and go run, or you’re going to get up and do some research for your sales call the next day, right? And so, there’s pros and cons to every activity so I don’t necessarily think that this book should guide you to a direction in life. It’s a book to help you stay committed to that direction.

Pete Mockaitis
Okay. So, you’re saying that what I’m really pressing on is not what you have created. Yours is more about maintaining commitment as opposed to arriving at an optimal upfront decision.

Dean Lindsay
I do have some stuff in the book, yeah, I guess you could definitely say that. I wouldn’t know, I mean, I don’t know how you could even start in the book like that. I mean, then you go open a Pandora’s box of everything people could do and that includes the Peace Corps. What are you going to do? I say I don’t know your deck of cards. I don’t know the influence you’ve gotten from other people.

The only exercise I do in the book to help kind of spur this kind of conversation because it’s a framework that then people can go back and use over and over and over again. I do have an exercise in the book that has you kind of vison board the next 15 years of your life, everything you want to have accomplished and done, and big stuff and little stuff, and the food you want to have eaten, and people you want to have met, and bands you want to have seen in concerts, and learning to play a guitar, and you run through everything you want to have accomplished in 15 years.

And then that exercise takes a couple of deep kind of turns to where you do start to see some certain things bubble to the top as far as the ones that are the biggest ones that you kind of going after. But, even then, it’s a very general thing. In some of the workshops, when I do in small groups or webinars, we’ll go through the classic wheel of life type thing where you’re looking at your life and spiritual and financial and family and health and all those things. You kind of get a gauge of where things are but that’s also, and as it should be, very subjective.

Pete Mockaitis
Right. And so, I think that you’ve surfaced up one or two kind of tools where it comes to imagining up the course of 15 years, what really are the long-term dream that this thing is connected to, thinking about the extent to which there is alignment within some goals versus others. I know we’re both fans of Jay Papasan with The ONE Thing. That’s one thing that would make everything else easier or unnecessary. I think it’s an awesome question and book there.

So, yeah, so thanks for playing ball as I really put you on the spot here, but I think that that is some of the really hard work upfront in terms of arriving there. But you got me really fired up and inspired about how when you arrive at that point of conviction, you know the goal you’ve selected is the top best use of your time. I think you really are unstoppable.

And so, you’re saying then, once you got that in play you keep it fresh by making it phatter, digging into the six P’s. And any other pro tips for renewing and refreshing that commitment as the temptations arise?

Dean Lindsay
Yeah, one of the things that people talk about writing down goals, and I really believe in writing a goal but also it’s also how you write the goal. I don’t encourage people to write a goal just as kind of a reminder of the goal but actually write it in such a way that it becomes a self-fulfilling affirmation. You know what I’m saying? What you do want, not what you don’t want. Not using future tense. Making sure that you’re saying things in such a way that it actually gives your mind momentum, that you’re crafting it so it propels you into action.

Pete Mockaitis
Cool. All right. Well, any final thoughts before we shift gears and talk about some of your favorite things?

Dean Lindsay
Well, I really like what you were throwing out there, Pete. I thank you for shaking it up because you’re right, you’re touching on something that there’s so much competition of, you know, you said it earlier, of options. We have so many options and that can get incredibly overwhelming, and that’s the reason we need to do the deep work to decide, well, what we’re supposed to be doing.

Pete Mockaitis
Certainly. Yeah, cool. Well, now, can you share with us a favorite quote, something you find inspiring?

Dean Lindsay
Very cool. Well, I told you that one. That was the one that I definitely… the quote from Pat Benatar. But my other favorite quote, I’m pulling it up right now, it comes from my man Dr. Viktor Frankl. The one that I like a lot is that, “Between stimulus and response, there’s a space, and it is in that space that we have the power to choose our response.”

Pete Mockaitis
Okay. Thank you. And how about a favorite book?

Dean Lindsay
Man’s Search for Meaning.

Pete Mockaitis
Yeah, that’s good. And a favorite tool?

Dean Lindsay
Yeah, I was wondering what that meant.

Pete Mockaitis
Oh, sure. Yeah. That means sort of like it’s an app or piece of software or something that you use frequently that helps you be awesome at your job? Some people say a hammer, a measuring tape, or Google Docs, whatever it may be.

Dean Lindsay
What do I use a bunch? I use Canva. Have you ever used Canva?

Pete Mockaitis
Oh, yeah. Yeah, I’ve heard a little bit. Explain.

Dean Lindsay
Canva is a great tool for making JPEGs and putting quotes and making social media posts then brochures and LinkedIn headlines. It’s a great tool for making JPEGs.

Pete Mockaitis
Right. And do you have a favorite habit?

Dean Lindsay
Do I have a favorite habit? Yeah, ones that I’m proud of? You know what, I do. I do actually, Pete. About two and a half years ago, my walking shoes or running shoes are right at the back door right now. I walk every morning. Talk about a five-mile loop.

Pete Mockaitis
Oh, wow.

Dean Lindsay
I recommend it. I don’t even put headphones and I just kind of greet the day and be in the open and taking a lot of deep breaths, so that’s definitely a habit I’m very happy about.

Pete Mockaitis
Awesome. And is there a particular nugget you share in your speeches or writing that really seems to connect and resonate with folks, they retweet it, they quote it back to you? What would that be?

Dean Lindsay
It’s a two-word phrase.

Pete Mockaitis
All right.

Dean Lindsay
Be progress. People must view you as – for them to want to be in a relationship with you – they need to view you as the unique right mixture of pleasure, peace of mind, profit, prestige, pain avoidance, and power, the six P’s of progress. You must be progress.

Pete Mockaitis
Excellent. Thank you. And if folks want to learn more or get in touch, where would you point them?

Dean Lindsay
DeanLindsay.com, D-E-A-N-L-I-N-D-S-A-Y.com.

Pete Mockaitis
And do you have a favorite challenge or call to action you’d issue to folks seeking to be awesome at their jobs?

Dean Lindsay
Compliment somebody. Thank them, compliment them, tell them they did good.

Pete Mockaitis
Awesome. Well, Dean, thank you so much for sharing your expertise and wisdom and time. You have planted a tantalizing question deep inside me; how does one know the goal you’ve selected is the top best use of your time. And you’ve give us a great starting point there. I have a feeling I’ll be chewing on this for years to come. So, much, much appreciated, and good luck in all you’re up to with Big PHAT Goals, and more.

Dean Lindsay
Thank you, Pete.

Leave a Reply

The Gold Nugget

The Gold Nugget

After each episode I send out the top performance-boosting takeaways I glean from each podcast guest. Register now! it's totally FREE. And short. And fun.

You have Successfully Subscribed!