What do You Want: A Well-Formed Outcome (Part III)

What do you Want & How will you get it? (Part III)

What will you DO?

“Be daring, be different, be impractical, be anything that will assert integrity of purpose and imaginative vision against the play-it-safers, the creatures of the commonplace, the slaves of the ordinary.” – Sir Cecil Beaton


In the last two months, you fully defined what you want and why you want it.  In this blog, I will begin discussing questions of how you will get your outcome.  It is important to note the order in which we have approached this.  It is most effective to determine what and why before asking yourself how.  In fact one of the reasons that many projects never get off the ground is because we begin to ask, “how am I going to do this?” before we are clear on what we want to do and why we want to do it.

In this blog, we will create a list of what needs to happen & what are the next steps.

What resources do you need?

One of the most powerful things that people learn through coaching is that they are completely resourceful, lacking nothing.  There is an NLP presupposition that states, “People already have all the resources they need.  What they lack is access to these resources at appropriate times and places.”  Recognizing you are completely resourceful is a first step to accessing your resources.  The job of a coach is to ask questions that allow you to access your resources.  A resource can be internal or external.  An internal resource is confidence; an external resource is money.  An internal resource may be the answer to a question you ask silently within; an external resource may be the answer to a question you ask out loud.

The question here is, what resources do you need to achieve your outcome?  List all of the resources that you will need to get your outcome, both internal and external.

Pay particular attention to resources which are dependent on others or which may not be easily attainable. For resources that are not available, find alternatives that will serve your purposes equally well in achieving your outcome.

What resources do you have?

Create a list also of resources you already have, so you can clearly see what you have now and what you need to obtain.

What are you already doing to achieve it?

You are already taking action.  Make a list of actions you have taken or are taking.  It is useful to assess what you are already doing.  It will focus you on your commitment.  And it is part of the idea that you must, as they say in yoga, “start where you are.”  Actions you have taken already if you have been doing the exercises in these blogs:

  • Thinking about it (recognizing that turning your mind toward your desires sets a whole string of consequences into motion)
  • Creating a mental plan (beginning to look at next steps)
  • Creating a well-formed outcome as you have gone through the last two blogs (things in writing are already in process)
  • What else are you already doing?  Write it down.

Step into the future and imagine having your outcome fully.  What did you do to get here?

Another way to begin to create a list of steps is to visually imagine yourself at a point in the future having achieved your result fully.  Take a moment now and close your eyes.  Imagine having your outcome fully.  Be in the picture experiencing the result as if you had it now.  What do you see, hear and feel?  When you are fully in the experience of having your outcome, then turn around and look to your past and ask “what did I do to get here?”  Write down all the steps your future self can see were taken to get to the outcome.  This will be part of a list of steps.

What is your first step?

From where you are standing now, what is the next step for you to take?  Go back to the lists you have created from the foregoing four sections – What resources do I need? What resources do I have? What am I already doing? and Stepping into the future – and decide what is your immediate next step.  There may be choices of a next step – be sure they fit within the SMART goal framework.

Using the SMART goal tool.  Identify a next step that is:




Risky in some way (a stretch for you)


 Consider your first step.

 Is it specific?  “I will make $50,000 more by the end of the year” rather than “I plan to make more money”.

 Is it measurable?  “I will exercise 5 times this week for 30 minutes each time” rather than “I will exercise more”.

 Is it attainable?  This does not mean:  Is it easy?  It means:  Can it be initiated by you?  Can it be controlled by you?  Is it possible?  This is distinct from something you know you cannot do.  But do not mistake this for “risky”.  While your goal should be attainable, it should also involve an element of stretching yourself.

Is it risky?  You will not get what you want if you do not stretch yourself.  Nothing can change when you are comfortable.  Get outside your comfort zone — make sure you are stretching!

Is it time-specific?  “I will clean the closets in my bedroom by the end Friday, November 11, 2011 at midnight PST” rather than “I will begin cleaning clutter in my home”.


 In this blog, we have created a list of resources needed and the next step to take, as a SMART goal.  After creating the first SMART goal, you will take action to achieve the result and then develop next steps as SMART goals designed to move you toward your ultimate outcome. 

“The secret of getting ahead is getting started. The secret of getting started is breaking your complex, overwhelming tasks into small,  manageable tasks, and then starting on the first one.”
-Mark Twain

About the Author

Picture of Cami McLaren

Cami McLaren

is the owner of McLaren Coaching. She has been coaching professionals and leaders since early 2008. She runs Transformative Coaching Essentials, a coach training program that produces first rate Professional Coaches and "Coach-Style Leaders." She coaches individually and works with organizations to improve communication, time management, productivity and ultimately bring greater results.

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