One of the books I was recently reading was How to Fail at Almost Everything and Still Win Big Win, Kind of the Story of My Life by Scott Adams where Scott discusses Systems, not Goals. Before we jump into this topic, you might be asking who Scott Adams is? Unless you are an engineer or follow cartoons, you might not recognize Scott Adam’s name as the creator of the nationally syndicated cartoon, Dilbert. What I didn’t realize before reading this books were the struggles Scott has had in his life with his hands, necessary for a cartoonist, and with his voice, essential for a speaking career, both of which Scott was heavily involved.
Scott has an interesting view of how he operates his life. Scott doesn’t believe as much in goals. You know, those things that people set all the time like I am going to lose 20 pounds, or I am going to stop smoking. Then we set out to reach this goal, mostly fail, then try again. Scott believes more in creating systems. If you want to lose weight, don’t set a goal for how much you want to lose, create a system that enables you to lose weight and you will eventually get to where you want to be. For example, a method to lose weight might be to cut down on carbohydrates in your diet, get up and move around for at least once a day the system approach is a set of activities and/or decisions that when applied help you to achieve a particular outcome.
Live Like a Diabetic
Previous to reading Scott’s book, I hadn’t really put much thought into my goals versus systems. I had put more energy into my daily affirmations (I am… ) than I had into goals. I did think about things like my ideal weight and my ideal health, but I didn’t set numbers or goals for where I wanted to be. I simply followed the Live Like a Diabetic theme of Think, Eat and Move like a person with diabetes.
After reading Scott’s book, I realized that the Live Like a Diabetic theme IS A SYSTEM. The Think, Eat and Move ideas shared on this site are all about systems. Activities to understand your glucose curve, ways of thinking to control your subconscious I could go on and on but, at the bases for the Live Like a Diabetic movement is the system of managing your diabetes via non-prescription methods.
Now that I’ve made the correlation, I see how systems really do work over goals. I never had a goal to reverse my diabetes; I developed a system of the change in the way that I ate and thought that eventually lead me to reversal. Once I reversed my diabetes, I developed a method to get into the best health of my life and my adding moving to the already existing eat and think, I am happy to say that I have officially lost 91 pounds which makes me clinically NOT OBESE ANYMORE. I haven’t been at this weight since I got married to my wife 27 years ago. I am in the best shape of my (adult) life, and I did it all without goals because I developed the systems to make the needed changes in my life.
Have you seen systems work for you? What methods do you use?