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Goal oriented vs process oriented

personperson Don't believe everything you thinkthe void Veteran
edited January 13 in Buddhism Today

What motives you? Do you focus on a goal to be achieved to motivate you or do you focus on the process oriented steps you need to take day to day to improve your situation #bettereveryday

A couple short videos

I'm realizing I'm pretty process oriented, I don't really care if I'm meeting some vision or goal. I care if I'm making efforts each dayish to improve the situation.


  • personperson Don't believe everything you think the void Veteran
    edited January 13

    Are your eyes mainly on the horizon or on your feet? It's best if we do both, but if you err on the side of the horizon, do you ever lose your footing and stumble or get disheartened and beat yourself up by how far you have to go? If you err on the side of your feet do you ever lose your way or become lackadaisical in your pace because you're happy about all the footsteps you've taken.

  • chariramacharirama Veteran Veteran

    As a performing musician I am focused on the process (the performance). The goal is to streamline the process by removing any obstacles that may hinder the performance.

  • lobsterlobster Veteran Veteran

    Reminds me @charirama of:

    Every block of stone has a statue inside it and it is the task of the sculptor to discover it.

    and now back to the unsculpted sculpted choices ...

  • KeromeKerome Love, love is mystery The Continent Veteran

    I found it interesting that I’ve lately come across some goal oriented thinking which clarified certain things for me in the dharma. This quote in particular:

    “Will this, if I do it, contribute to my long-term welfare and happiness?”

    If you ask that regularly of yourself, it gives a great deal of insight into habits and the acts we usually do during a day.

  • DavidDavid some guy Veteran

    I'd have to say both. My goal is to adhere to the process most conducive to our wakefulness.

  • personperson Don't believe everything you think the void Veteran

    Yeah, we need to have an idea of where we're going even in a process oriented approach or we're just wandering randomly in an effective way. And we have to know how to walk effectively in a goal oriented approach or we're just helplessly stuck looking at someplace else we'd rather be and feeling miserable about it.

    @lobster said:
    "For thirty years people have been asking me how I reconcile X with Y!
    The truthful answer is that I don't.
    Everything about me is a contradiction and so is everything about everybody else.
    We are made out of oppositions;
    we live between two poles.
    There is a philistine and an aesthete in all of us, and a murderer and a saint.
    You don't reconcile the poles. You just recognize them."

    [To Kennety Tynan, 1967]

    I think that is a healthy view of our own contradictions and a good way of thinking to find peace within yourself. Also an additional, semi contradictory thought that occurs to me is Sitting Bull's two dogs.

    “Inside of me there are two dogs. One is mean and evil and the other is good and they fight each other all the time. When asked which one wins I answer, the one I feed the most.” ― Sitting Bull

  • lobsterlobster Veteran Veteran

    As we feed one dog to the other, avoiding the cats, quantum state, bull etc we find that the very temporary nature of mind is:

    • unreliable
    • variable
    • best avoided

    Like many here I am unable to avoid 'my' [hollow laugh] mind. However at times I make better use of it.

    For example I don't walk like an Egyptian but try to regularly sit like a Buddha

    Bonus off track

  • AmanakiAmanaki Explorer Norway Explorer

    Only this moment is in focus. Not dwelling in the past or worry about future.

  • lobsterlobster Veteran Veteran

    @Amanaki said:
    Only this moment is in focus. Not dwelling in the past or worry about future.

    This is the ideal state, mindfully attentive and present.
    Every direction is right. Every step is perfecting.

    ... and now back to the dancing ...

  • KeromeKerome Love, love is mystery The Continent Veteran
    edited January 21

    @Amanaki said:
    Only this moment is in focus. Not dwelling in the past or worry about future.

    That is unavoidable, the past and the future are constructs of the mind. Still the 4NT and N8FP are about process and goals.

  • ToshTosh Veteran Veteran

    Both. Identify a goal (like running a marathon). Then work out the process to enable that to happen (the training plan). Then forget about the goal and focus on the plan.

  • ToshTosh Veteran Veteran

    Goal; to be Enlightened. Plan: Live ethically. Practise compassion. Meditate.

    You Buddhists are both goal and process orientated. O.o

  • lobsterlobster Veteran Veteran
    edited January 25

    Good advice @Tosh

    Yiddish proverb
    “We plan, God laughs.”

    Thank the Buddhas we have no laughing yidams ... wait ... [failed again] ;)

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