Friday, August 21, 2015

The Assessment Workout

Assess how you tend to achieve your goals.  Warning!  This is a spiritual workout so proceed with caution.  Workout at your own level.  Don't overdo it but try to be completely honest with yourself for the best results.  Read through the statements and give yourself a point for every one that is similar to the way you think, talk, or act.  Add up the points you have for each section, divide them by the total number of questions for that section to get your percentage, then follow the directions at the end.

Most of you know what I mean when I use the word Cause.
When I use the words Child or Children, I'm not only referring to biological children but also anyone who has weaknesses in the same areas we have strengths.  That means we have the ability to help them on their Goal Achievement Journey (GAJ)...if they have the desire and if they will let us.
An additional way to think about Children when this word  comes up in any of the assessment statements below is seeing our past-self as a Child.  Since we grow in our understanding and abilities over time, we basically become a different person than what we used to be.  How we look at that person influences how we look at our Children now. So be kind to your past-self.

Section A
  1. I feel like I’ve done enough to obtain my goal but I still don’t have it.
  2. It is very difficult to think about anything else but achieving my goal.
  3. I'm pretty extreme about my goal.
  4. I hyper-analyze the goal I want to obtain.
  5. I don’t have time to listen to my heart to identify my core desire.  I don’t hear anything even when I try to slow myself down to listen.
  6. I will only be happy when I obtain my overall goal.  Until then it’s nose to the grindstone.
  7. I think praying for what I want is a waste of my time.
  8. I think praying for what I want is good but in reality it is through my own efforts that my goal is going to be achieved.
  9. It is my right to obtain this goal.  It doesn’t matter if I don’t obey the inherent law to obtain it.  If I work hard enough, put enough sweat and blood into it, it rightfully belongs to me.
  10. I’m willing to carry all the burdens in my Goal Achievement Journey (GAJ).  Since this is my goal, I don’t think it’s fair to expect others’ to share in bearing the burdens.
  11. I don’t want to have to work like this forever.  I just want to get the GAJ over with so I can sit back in an easy chair and enjoy my privileges.
  12. After I achieve this goal, I’ll be on the look out for the next thing I want.
  13. I don't take enough time for self-reflection and self-improvement.
  14. I expect everyone involved in my GAJ to have the same level of commitment as I do (even my Children).
  15. I determine my own destiny and I can rewrite that any time without affecting anyone else.
  16. I receive too little peace for how much I sacrifice.
  17. I spend very little time preparing before I start on a project or a journey.
  18. I spend too little time searching for answers before I plunge forward with a choice.
  19. I listen too little for confirmation that I’m on the right path for how much effort I’m putting into my GAJ.
  20. I’m not able to sense the clues that signal to me early on that I’m on the right path.  I usually wait for the results to know whether I made the right choice or not.
  21. I don’t mind making the same mistakes over and over again.  That’s life.
  22. I have a hard time believing anyone has ever been where I’m at so I usually think I’m on my own.
  23. I carry heavier burdens than I can handle because there’s no one around to help me.
  24. I don’t think it’s my place to ask for others’ commitment even though the difficulty level of my GAJ is high.
  25. I don’t like accepting help from others.
  26. I rarely spend time actually pondering how my Cause’s words and actions apply to my GAJ.  I just go for it.
  27. I think it’s a waste of time reading the directions.  I prefer to figure it out as I go.
  28. I don’t slow down for anyone.  If they want to be apart of my GAJ, they have to catch up with me. (Break My Stride by Matthew Wilder)
  29. I like forging my own pathway through thick jungle. 
  30. I see my own strengths but have difficulty identifying the strengths of others. 
  31. I remember my own successes more than I remember those of others.
  32. I like to hear stories about my achievements but lose interest in hearing those of others. 
  33. I am aware when others give signs that they admire me but keep it to myself when I admire someone else. 
  34. I don't compliment others on their talents but it makes me feel really good about myself when others compliment me. 
  35. I hide my weaknesses and failures as much as possible but clearly see those of others. 
  36. I share stories of my successes but not of my failures even though I've had them. When others fail I act like its never happened to me. 
  37. When others fail to keep their commitments to me I give them hell. 
  38. I like to talk above people’s heads who don't have the same abilities as I have. Reminds me of my successes. 
  39. The more my successes are applauded, the better I feel...yet I seriously have a hard time applauding others'.
  40. I like to remember the sacrifices I’ve made to accomplish my goals but don’t often evaluate the sacrifices others made to help me.
Your score/40 = _____ %
Example:  10/40 = 25%

Section B
  1. I often find myself viewing my goal as a wish, a dream, a pie in the sky.
  2. I wonder if I’ll ever really obtain what I want.
  3. My thoughts wander all the time.
  4. I can’t seem to focus on any specific goal.
  5. I kind of just do whatever I feel like doing in the moment.
  6. I would describe myself as whimsical.
  7. I just focus on little daily goals but don’t see how they connect to my overall goals. 
  8. What I do on a daily basis doesn’t necessarily have to do with my core values and beliefs.
  9. I pray for what I want but don’t actually commit to doing anything to obtain it.
  10. Grace is all that is needed.  I can do nothing to obtain my goal.
  11. I don’t really need anything specific.  Anything will do.  Whatever comes to me, comes to me.  I'm good.
  12. I believe that what I need will be given to me without having to engage in a GAJ.
  13. I believe my Cause (and others) will carry all the burdens that need to be carried in my GAJ. 
  14. My contribution to carrying burdens does not contribute to my happiness or create bonds of love in my relationships with others.
  15. I don’t believe in commitments.  I just live and let live.
  16. I’m always looking for the loopholes, shortcuts, and ways around actually having to obey the established laws to obtain my goal.
  17. I don’t believe laws and order assist me to be happy.
  18. I’m attracted to the latest trends, share them with as many people as I can, then I get sick of them.
  19. I believe destiny is fate.  Things just happen to me and I have no control over that whatsoever.  I have never had any say in my destiny.
  20. I receive too much peace for how little opportunity I'm given to sacrifice for others.
  21. I spend tons of time preparing before I can actually start on a project or a journey.
  22. I spend disproportionately large amounts of time searching for answers before I’m willing to make an actual choice (Focus & Priorities by Elder Dalin H. Oaks).
  23. I’m very hesitant to even progress in my journey unless I am sure it’s the right thing to do (Matthew 14:31).
  24. I don’t like to experiment with different choices. 
  25. I don’t like to make mistakes.
  26. I rely heavily on my Cause to tell me what to do even for the choices I already know are right.
  27. I don’t like taking risks.
  28. I carry lighter burdens than I can handle because there are others around to do it.
  29. It’s uncomfortable to commit myself to people and GAJs. 
  30. I don't think I'm capable of taking on responsibilities like others are.
  31. I spend large amounts of time pondering my Cause’s words and actions but don’t give much thought to their application to my own GAJ.
  32. I read all the directions through several times and make sure I know exactly what I’m doing before I’ll even start on a project or a journey.
  33. I get very frustrated when things don’t go as the directions say they were supposed to go especially when I’m following them with exactness.
  34. I don't notice the difference I'm making with my life in other people's lives.  I usually just go with the flow and try not to make any waves.
  35. I feel most comfortable taking the same pathways that the majority of my family and friends are taking.
  36. I remember the successes of others more than I remember my own. 
  37. I see the strengths of others but have difficulty identifying mine. 
  38. I like to hear stories about the achievements of others but lose interest in trying to tell my own. 
  39. I feel so much admiration for the strengths in others but am clueless that there are others who admire my strengths.
  40. I compliment others on their talents but can’t accept compliments from others. 
  41. I talk about my weaknesses and failures excessively but don’t see them in others.
  42. I share stories of my failures but not my successes even though I've had them. When others succeed I act like its never happened to me. 
  43. When I fail to keep my commitments to others (#Mistakes) or can't seem to get my GAJ right, I feel like I’m going to hell. 
  44. I sometimes feel like I don’t know anything when I’m with people who act like they know it all.  Reminds me of my failures.
  45. The more I talk about about my failures and just get them all out on the table, the less judged I feel.  But later, I worry that they are judging me.
  46. I need a lot of empathy just to get through my days.
  47. I rarely remember the sacrifices I’ve made to contribute to team goals but am highly conscious of the sacrifices others made.
Your score/47 = _____ %
Example:  10/47 = 22%
Section C
  1. I desire to obtain a goal.
  2. I have hope that I can obtain my goal.
  3. I give my goal serious thought.
  4. I visualize my goal.
  5. I listen to my heart to identify my core desire in this goal.
  6. I sense the smaller goals I need to achieve in order to obtain my overall goal.
  7. I pray for what I want.
  8. I acknowledge that I need this goal.
  9. I am willing to share in the burdens that will need to be carried to obtain this goal.
  10. I am willing to enter into long-term commitments to obtain this goal.
  11. I hunger to achieve this goal.
  12. I am willing to submit to any conditions (laws that have to be obeyed--Inherent Process) to obtain this goal.
  13. I desire to make a difference in the lives of my Children by obtaining this goal.
  14. Every highway is leading me to this goal. No matter what I do, this core desire is still calling me.
  15. I receive peace in balance with how many opportunities and challenges I'm given or that I choose to take.
  16. I spend a balanced amount of time preparing before I start on a project or journey.
  17. I keep my eyes open for answers when making choices.
  18. I listen for confirmation as I think about, talk about, and then actively engage in my GAJ.
  19. I engage my spidey-senses as much as possible to determine if I’m headed in the right direction so I don’t have to end up in a place I never desired to get to.
  20. I recognize that my Cause was once  where I’m at now on my journey so I rely on him for his guidance as I do my best to move along. ("Move Along" by The All-American Rejects)
  21. I’m okay with making mistakes but my hope is that I’ll make less of the same ones over time as I grow.
  22. I take responsibility for the burdens I can incrementally carry and allow my Cause to carry the rest.
  23. I both help carry the burdens of others and accept their help in carrying mine.
  24. I ask my Cause for his commitment and give him mine in return. (#Baptism, #Covenants)
  25. When I study my Cause’s words and actions, I apply them to my GAJ.  I strive to correct my thoughts, words, and actions to match his.  I can’t move forward in my GAJ until I’ve mastered the instructions I’ve already received.
  26. I strive to understand as much of the directions as I can for a project or journey and then begin.  As I experience the reality of the journey, I re-read the directions for clarity and specific application especially when things change or don’t go exactly as planned (as is usually the case). 1 Nephi 4:15-16
  27. I work to creatively achieve my goals, especially when things don't go as planned.
  28. I prefer to take the pathway my Cause has taken but in doing that I recognize that I am required to forge some specific pathways that no one else has ever taken before.  I pay close attention to my Cause to know what to generally do when things become unclear (Matthew 14:25-31).
  29. I remember the goals I have already achieved.
  30. I have gratitude for the results I have obtained.
  31. I often ponder on the team effort that went into obtaining my past goals.
  32. I remember both the successes of others and my own and how together we achieved our goals. 
  33. I see the difference obtaining my past goals has made in my life and in the lives of others.
  34. I acknowledge that the strengths of others help me in the areas I am weak.  Likewise I observe how my strengths help others where they are weak.  I recognize this is what makes relationships sustainable.
  35. I like to hear stories about the achievements of others.  When I hear others tell stories about my part in achievements, they positively reinforce me and our relationship.
  36. I listen to music and stories that remind me of my past GAJs. 
  37. I feel so much admiration for the strengths in others and sense the Children that admire my strengths.  Those are the ones I have the opportunity to assist with their GAJ.
  38. I compliment others on their talents that have helped me or brightened my day and graciously accept compliments from others.
  39. I remember the burdens I carried in my past GAJs as well as the burdens others carried so that we could obtain our goals together. 
  40. I talk about my weaknesses and failures in order to establish humility and empathy in my relationships with others.  I so much appreciate it when others do the same.  It is such a Balm of Gilead.
  41. I share stories of both my failures and successes as needed to help others with their GAJs.  When others succeed I rejoice with them.  When they fail I cry with them.
  42. I love to tell stories of my past GAJs, the team effort that went into them, and cherish the relationships that were established and strengthened through them.
  43. I actively keep the long-term commitments I entered into to maintain the privileges I enjoy now. 
  44. When I fail to keep my commitments to others (#Mistakes) I apologize and recommit.  When others fail to keep their commitments to me, I forgive them and let it go.  Sometimes I need to talk it all out with them.  I’m thankful when they apologize and recommit.
  45. I explain what I know with others at a level that they can understand in hopes that it will help them with their GAJ.  I listen to others explaining what they know, seek for the truth in it, and then apply it to my own GAJ.  I  learn more about my story as well as others' stories through this process.
  46. I bear witness of the laws that have had to be obeyed in order to obtain and maintain my goals.
  47. Through my past GAJs, I have developed knowledge, good habits, abilities, and talents that I didn’t have before. 
  48. I consistently use my talents to help my Children obtain their goals because I know the adage:  Use it or lose it.
  49. The more my Children know about the variables that went into my successful GAJs as well as what happened in the failures, the better they will be able to progress efficiently in their GAJs.  I hope they learn from both my successes and failures (...that [they] may be more wise than we have been.)
  50. I remember the sacrifices I’ve made to contribute to team goals and am also highly conscious of the sacrifices others made.
Your score/50 = _____ %
Example:  30/50 = 60%

End Directions
Northwest Process
If you had the highest percentage in Section A, you tend to obtain your goals in the Northwest.  That means you’re being forced (or forcing yourself) to run faster than you have strength to obtain your desires.  It is very likely you have been reliant upon NE Provider/Teacher Causes.

You may also have been reliant upon Causes who basically tell you through their example and feedback that you have to push yourself beyond your NW Threshold to obtain your goals (NW Example/Evaluator Causes). 

Resolution Process 
Reread Section C and compare it with Section A to see the difference.  Watch out for the natural tendency to correct a NW Process with a NE Process (Section B).  Here are some past blog posts I've written and videos I've done that have helped me center up from the NW:

Northeast Process 
If you had the highest percentage in Section B, you are Northeast.  That means you’re underemployed.  You don’t realize the strengths that you have to offer and how valuable they are to others.  And it may be that you are aware of your strengths but the Cause you’re dependent upon isn’t.  See NW Provider/TeacherCauses.

It’s also possible you have been misinformed that sitting around in an easy chair watching TV or living the life of luxury is the best life (NE Exemplar/Evaluator Cause). 

Resolution Process
Reread Section C and compare it with Section B to see the difference.  Watch out for the natural tendency to correct a NE Process with a NW Process (Section A). 

Regardless of the specific imbalanced Causes who seem to be in control of whether or not you are given opportunities, there is an open door for you in our North Cause—Jesus Christ.  It doesn’t matter if people seem to be standing in your way or if they totally are undervaluing your abilities and potential.  He can circumvent it all by giving you opportunities and challenges directly.  It may not be in the way you’d expect so you have to be humble and let him show you the way, but there will come a day when you’ll look back with astonishment and declare him to be a mastermind! (...every knee shall bow and every tongue confess)

Here are some other blog posts I've written and videos I've done that have helped me center up from the NE:
I Wish... 
Do I Have Room in My Inn?
True To My Heart 
The Servant Program Videos Day 3:  Balanced vs. Imbalanced 

Northeast/Northwest Imbalanced Process
If you had a high percentage in both sections A and B, that’s pretty normal as we are all swinging like a pendulum to some degree from the Northwest to the Northeast and then back again.  When I took the assessment I found that there were specific GAJs in which I was in the NW on certain things and then other GAJs in which I was in the NE on certain things.  The name of the game is to decrease the degree to which we are swinging over time.  

Even if we have similar percentages in the NW and the NE, we most likely start out our GAJ on one side or the other.  Some of us actually go in and out of cycles where we start in the NW for several weeks or months and then start in the NE for several weeks or months. 

Sometimes I start out my GAJ in NW sprinting at the sound of the pistol and then reflexively swing to the NE after I hit the wall of muscular fatigue.  I do this because I am super-excited about my new goal!!  Yay!  When I find myself swinging like that, the key is to force myself to moderate my pace at the get-go.  Just take it slow.  Lift a smaller amount of weight.  Then as time goes by, I put that natural exhilaration into consistency and endurance.

When I’m in the time period when I prefer the laid back NE lifestyle and am not really into races and GAJs and all that (this is usually when I’m licking my wounds from some catastrophic event), I try making, keeping, and reporting on daily commitments before I allow the couch, good book, and cup of hot chocolate (or bowl of ice cream) to swallow me whole (I Love Crazy!).

Northern Process
If you had the highest percentage in Section C, you are predominantly balanced in the North!