I asked, “What is so special about taking out a sheet of paper and writing out your goals? How could such a simple act make such a difference?”
Julian was delighted. “Your obvious interest inspires me, John. Enthusiasm is one of the key ingredients for a lifetime of successful living and I am glad to see that you still have every ounce of yours. Earlier I taught you that we each think about 60,000 thoughts on an average day. By writing out your desires and goals on a piece of paper, you send a red flag to your subconscious mind that these thoughts are far more important than the remaining 59,999 other ones. Your mind will then start to seek out all opportunities to realise your destiny like a guided missile. It is really a very scientific process. Most of us are simply not aware of it.”
“A few of my partners are big on goal-setting. Come to think of it, they are the most financially successful people I know. But I don’t think they are the most balanced,” I observed.
“Perhaps they are not setting the right goals. You see, John, life pretty much gives you what you ask from it. Most people want to feel better, have more energy or live with greater satisfaction. Yet, when you ask them to tell you precisely what it is they want, they have no answer. You change your life the moment you set your goals and start to seek out your Dharma,” Julian said, his eyes sparkling with the truth of his words.
“Have you ever met someone with a strange name and then started to notice that name appearing everywhere: in newspapers, on the television or at the office? Or have you ever become interested in a new subject, let’s say fly fishing, and then noticed that you couldn’t go anywhere without hearing about the wonders of fly fishing? This is but one illustration of the ageless principle Yogi Raman called joriki, which I have since learned means ‘concentrated mind.’ Concentrate every ounce of your mental energy on self-discovery. Learn what you excel at and what makes
you happy. Maybe you are practicing law but are really meant to be a school teacher, given your patience and love of teaching. Perhaps you are a frustrated painter or sculptor. Whatever it is, find your passion and then follow it.”
“Now that I really think about it, it would be sad to reach the end of my life without realizing that I had some special genius that would have unlocked my potential and helped others — even in a small way.”
“That’s right. So from this moment onwards, be acutely aware of your aim in life. Awaken your mind to the abundance of possibility around you. Start to live with more zest. The human mind is the world’s largest filtering device. When used properly it filters out what you perceive as unimportant and gives you only the information you are looking for at that time. At this very moment, as we sit here in your living room, there are hundreds if not thousands of things going on that we are not paying any attention to. There is the sound of the lovers giggling as they stroll along the boardwalk, the goldfish in the tank behind you, the cool air being blown from the air conditioner and even the beat of my own heart. The moment I decide to concentrate on my heartbeat, I start to notice its rhythm and its qualities. Similarly, when you decide to start concentrating your mind on your life’s main aims, our mind starts to filter out the unimportant and focus only on the important.”