Monday, 19 May 2008

Indiana Jones - the Ultimate Goal Achiever

Indiana Jones' "Leap of Faith"

Click the link above if you cannot see the YouTube video.

The Indiana Jones films are great adventure films and I couldn't resist watching "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade" last night. However, while the films are fun to watch there are many lessons to be learnt about goal achievement as well.

1. Indiana follows his passion

Indiana is passionate about archaeology and this is what drives him. Those who have achieved great success all believe vehemently in the importance of following your passion and doing what you love. It is only by doing this that you will continue to have the motivation to persevere in spite of enormous odds.

It is only by following your passion that you will have the energy and drive to keep going even though the journey towards your goal may be an arduous one and at times you may become weak.

"The key that unlocks energy is desire. It's also the key to a long and interesting life. If we expect to create any drive, any real force within ourselves, we have to get excited."
Earl Nightingale

2. Indiana has very clear values

Indiana's values made it easy for him for him to make decisions and take action. Great goal achievers are great decision-makers and they take action. Too often people do not achieve the level of success they desire because they spend too much time deciding what to do and too little time actually doing anything.

True some things require careful deliberation but in many cases, especially when it comes to the day-to-day activities that will help you to make progress towards your goal you have to learn how to quickly weigh up a situation and make the best decision there and then on how to move forwards.

Having clear values and clearly defined goals will go a long way in helping you to make those timely decisions.

"Your only purpose in life is to make choices. Once the choice is made, the whole universe moves to bring into fruition that which you chose."

3. Indiana confronts his fears

One of the endearing qualities about Indiana is that he is very human. He too has his fears, for instance, he hates snakes. Yet he does not let his fears stand in the way of achieving his goal.

"Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the judgment that something else is more important than fear."
Ambrose Redmoon

When you set yourself challenging goals, at some point you will come up against something that you fear. The trouble is what you fear may not be tangible. It may be a limiting or negative belief such as the fear of failure or the fear of success.

However, limiting or negative beliefs can stop you dead in your tracks if you do not develop techniques and strategies to clear yourself of these limiting and negative beliefs. The good thing is that the more you practice these clearing techniques the easier it will become to overcome your fears.

"When you face your fear, most of the time you will discover that it was not really such a big threat after all. We all need some form of deeply rooted, powerful motivation - it empowers us to overcome obstacles so we can live our dreams."
Les Brown

But back to "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade" - my favourite bit in the movie is Indiana Jones' "leap of faith". There's just something about that scene. It is such a great visual representation of what we all must go through to achieve anything of significance.

Indiana has to cross a huge chasm in order to reach his goal - the Holy Grail and yet there is seemingly no way across the chasm. He murmurs to himself,

"It's impossible. Nobody can jump this."

And then the realisation dawns on him that he needs to take a "leap of faith". Earlier in the film his father thought he that his son had died as he fell over a cliff and he bemoaned that the fact that he had not told him anything. Now as he lay grievously injured it was almost as if there was a telepathic connection between father and son. He murmurs,

"You must believe, boy. You must believe."

Indiana takes a deep breath and steps into the void. Instead of falling he finds his feet firmly planted on a bridge - narrow - but a solid bridge nonetheless that spans the width of the seemingly bottomless chasm.

You have to trust and believe in the unknown and the unseen. When you set a goal it first exists only exists in your mind's eye but this is perhaps the most important step in your goal achievement process.

"Faith is to believe what you do not yet see; the reward for this faith is to see what you believe."
St Augustine

The philosopher, William James also said that there is a law in psychology that if you form a picture in your mind of what you would like to be and hold that picture there long enough, you will achieve what you are thinking. The challenge is to hold onto your vision, to keep your faith.

One of my mentors, Dr Topher Morrison, favourite sayings is to make life a magnificent adventure. I'm sure Indiana Jones would agree. So as you go about your tasks today be bold, be adventurous and remember:

"Take a chance! All life is a chance. The person who goes the furthest is generally the one who is willing to do and dare."
Dale Carnegie

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