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DR EDDIE MURPHY: Find your Big Hairy Audacious Goal in life

DR EDDIE MURPHY: Find your Big Hairy Audacious Goal in life

DR EDDIE MURPHY: Find your Big Hairy Audacious Goal in life

Ireland needs to think big. Our population is increasing and I welcome the diversity. However it’s time to get planning.

Some business leaders and politicians like to have a BHAG- Big Hairy Audacious Goal. The phrase was coined by James Collins and Jerry Porras in their book, Built to Last: Successful Habits of Visionary Companies.

It involves setting a clear, definable target and going for it. It needs to be a stretch out of your comfort zone, out of reach but not out of sight. BHAG encourages businesses to define visionary goals that are more strategic and emotionally compelling.

They are in effect long term goals. John F Kennedy vowed to land a man on the moon and return him safely. Bill Gates' was to have a computer in every office and home.

Vision and leadership create optimism and positivity. Our political leaders could take note.

This notion of BHAG is not just the preserve of big business or government, this brilliant concept can be adapted for our personal lives. We all need a Big Hairy Audacious Goal. It can achieved by consistently working outside of our comfort zone and displaying commitment and confidence.

If you cannot picture or imagine achieving your vision, no matter how hard you try, it is likely that its ‘out of sight’ or that it doesn’t fit your passions, purpose, values and beliefs.

On the other hand, a vision that is easily achieved and can be grasped in the next month or year, is not really a vision. It needs to be a future goal that is exciting and challenges you to achieve more and to push yourself.

Your BHAG needs to be rooted in your core values or your core purpose as a person.

Examples may be:Having a positive relationship with your children for life; To be happy and authentic; complete a marathon or Ironman ; to live by the sea or elsewhere; to be debt free; to finance your retirement; add to your educational qualifications; have grandchildren; become self-employed and be a leader; learn a new language and live in that country; start a charity that accords your core values.

One BHAG that I like is to become your real self. The person you always wanted to be: positive and confident, unconcerned about the opinions of others, comfortable in your skin, at peace.

Ok time for some work, think now of a big, hairy, audacious goal that you might want to pursue now or later. Write it here:


Question if your big hairy audacious goal is worth it: 

1. How important is it to you?

2. Does it fit with your passions?

3. How beneficial would its achievement be to your self, family, friends, and society?

4. How likely are you to achieve it, at least in substantial measure?

5. If you fail, how big a price would you pay? What’s the worst outcome that realistically? Is there a way to reduce the risk while still allowing for the benefits?

Now you have identified your BHAG and challenged it, your next move is to list five milestones to your goal. These may be five intermediate goals to reach your goal, or just to achieve in the first year. Baby steps make goals achievable.

Basing your BHAG on your strengths is a great start to personal growth. Your strengths are a mix of talents, skills and knowledge.

Achievers spend most of their time using their strengths and managing weaknesses.

You too can achieve your BHAG, fire up your creativity and passion. The journey needs to be as enjoyable as the arrival. Dream big!

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