Achieve a Major Goal in 8 Weeks
Join the New Year Launch (12/31/2021 – 2/28/2022)
The beginning of the year is a great time to make a resolution, start a new project, or just shift into high gear after the holidays. Jump start 2022 by joining me for the New Year Launch. By participating in this program, you will:
- Set a goal or resolution that makes a material difference to your health, wealth, or relationships, which you will achieve in 8 weeks
- Troubleshoot and overcome any practical difficulties that stand in your way
- Build measurable emotional resilience to draw on as you pursue other challenging goals in the coming year
SPECIAL OFFER: Join now and get an early start, including extra group coaching in November.
If you join now, two months early, you get immediate access to the Launch program materials and other resources in the Thinking Lab, so you can start listening to recordings and working out your goal for the new year. In addition, you will get two bonus group-coaching calls:
- 8:00 – 9:00 p.m. Eastern, Tuesday, November 16, 2021
- 3:00 – 4:00 p.m. Eastern, Tuesday, November 30, 2021
Give yourself time to get some of the tools under your belt before you even start the 8-week Launch.
How exactly will the Launch work?
This program addresses all of the problems that come up when you start a self-study course or join a structured program.
I don’t want you to be overwhelmed by all of the material available to you. A special page for Launch participants will show you the exact coursework I recommend you go through. Then, starting with the Thinking Day, December 31, you will get daily support for 8 weeks. To give you an idea of how this will go, day by day, let me spell it out:
Launch has been an amazing experience, the best thing that has ever “happened” to me in the realm of productivity and “managing myself.” I implemented a new productivity system, I was able to stick to it, and I achieved my specific work goals. I have foundational universal skills for productivity and emotional resilience.
Registration (Prior to Kickoff Dec 31): Recommended early preparation for setting your goal
When you register, you will get access to my goal-setting process, which will help you set your goal for January and February. I will explain a specific process that ensures your goal will be both important to you and achievable in 8 weeks. Is your goal a yearlong goal? No problem. You’ll figure out the meaningful subgoal to complete by that time. Is your goal to change some behavior, such as diet or exercise? No problem. You’ll identify a resolution that you can get up and running smoothly by the end of 8 weeks.
If you have trouble choosing a goal, you can use the Decision Cards technique taught in one of the early recordings available to you.
Friday, December 31: Set your goal with help from me on Thinking Day
Friday, December 31 is Day 1 of the program. You will get an email reminder to choose your goal. I will also encourage you to check in during Thinking Day to get feedback on your goal and/or answers to your questions about the program. I will be on the Zoom bridge from 10-12 Eastern, 2-3 Eastern, and 5-6 Eastern.
Saturday, January 1: Start tracking your emotional resilience
The key to achieving any challenging goal is to deal with your own emotions around the failures and setbacks that are inevitable. I have developed a very simple measure of emotional resilience. On Day 2, I will send you an email explaining how to use this tracking tool, and you will fill out your tracking sheet for the previous day. This is something that will take you less than a minute each day, but which will give you objective evidence of both challenges and successes in your life.
Sunday, January 2: Reflect on what you’ve learned so far
Sunday is a great day for reflection. Every Sunday I’ll ask you to review what you’ve accomplished as a way to look forward to the next week.
Regular review has many benefits. First, it is critical to identifying problems early. Second, it enables you to get help in a timely manner. Third, it’s a great time to send feedback to me. Email me your observations; that will help me keep the program focused on real needs. I promise at least a short response, and sometimes your feedback will hit jackpot. Feedback from clients has led to new articles for my newsletter, new classes in the Thinking Lab, and new self-study courses on the Thinking Lab site.
Monday, January 3: Begin the Week 1 Thought Work
On Monday, we’ll start the regular weekly routine. I’ll send you an email explaining the theme for the week and giving you a specific 15-minute assignment. I will explain the theme in Monday’s email and then elaborate on it in the emails on Tuesday through Friday.
The theme each week is designed to address the issues I’ve seen in myself and others when working toward challenging goals. Generally speaking, we will focus on troubleshooting practical difficulties in the first month and motivational issues in the second.
The thought work will all be done as “thinking on paper,” which is taught in one of the recordings. To do the work, you will need to dedicate a notebook (if you use handwriting) or a document (if you think on paper on a computer) for all of your thought work for the program. Make sure you date each entry!
Your focus on teaching how to lead a value-led life has implications for almost everything I do. I am more actively looking for values, more actively acknowledging them when I see them. It’s WONDERFUL to discover that my subconscious is trying to take good care of me!
Wait a minute, this sounds like a lot of time. How much work is this going to be?
On average, budget 3-4 hours/week for this program, over and above the time you need to do the work to achieve your goal. Most days you will spend 15 minutes “thinking on paper.” Most weeks you will take an hour either to attend a coaching session or to do more in-depth thinking on some issue. For example, unless your goal is already clear, you will probably need a little extra time right at the beginning to clarify your goal.
The rest of the time spent will be listening to recorded classes, which are typically 75 minutes. I recommend you go through 8 classes, in order, as part of the program. If you join early, you can get ahead by listening to these in advance. During the program, I’ll keep you posted as to what recording I recommend you listen to each week.
If that sounds like a lot of time, maybe your goal isn’t important enough to warrant a two-month push. The motivation for doing this thought work is your achieving your goal. If you are sure you’ll achieve your goal without the program, then don’t sign up! If you don’t have a meaningful goal you want to achieve, then don’t sign up!
If you have a goal that you really want, but you dread putting the time in, then you need this program. The thought work is how you sort out why you don’t feel motivation to do something that is good for you. It’s also how you change your perspective so you do. Once you learn how to troubleshoot that kind of motivational disconnect, you will have a skill that you can draw on for the rest of your life.
What if I don’t know what goal to set?
If you have a vague yearning for something, but you don’t know now exactly what, you need more of the resources to get you started. In addition to the specific goal-setting work in this program, you will have access to courses in the Thinking Lab such as Developing a Central Purpose. Your goal for the eight weeks may be to identify a major direction for your life, or develop a skill, or you may take a couple of weeks at the beginning to sort out your goal. There are many, many resources available to you once you are in the program, and you can use them as much or as little as you need to get what you want.
Let me describe the rest of the details about how the program will work:
What exactly is “thought work”?
“Thought work” is the 15-minute assignment you do each day. These will always be done in writing. Essentially, I will ask you to answer some thought-provoking questions related to your goal. You will write out your answers in the form of “thinking on paper,” or sometimes follow the steps of another tactic. It is fine if you don’t know the answer to the questions at first. These are not tests. They are chances to “pick your own brain.” In the program, you will learn how to answer your own questions, even when you don’t know the answers at first. My job is to make the questions interesting and relevant to you, and to teach you how to adjust your thinking as you go, so that every one of these 15-minute sessions is helpful to you.
What does it look like? Here is a video of me doing “thinking on paper” in my journal (sped up 4x):
I used Launch to sort out my daily schedule, and decided to join up for a 2nd session to take on a new ambitious project. I appreciate the substantial interaction with you and Lin in the group calls.
Monday, January 3: (continued) Get help at the first group-coaching session
Each week there will be two group-coaching sessions. These will be on Zoom. I (or occasionally Lin Zinser) will be there to answer practical questions about the work and to coach you through obstacles.
The purpose of a coaching call is to help you see your own thinking and that you can think through any problems for yourself. You know more about your situation than I or any coach possibly could. But there is an art to being able to marshal your own resources to figure out your best next step in a timely way.
When you come to a group-coaching session, we may ask you about your most recent thought work or your emotional resilience chart. This information helps us coach you effectively. Please don’t be shy about sharing something that seems messy or not up to some ideal standard. Guaranteed, if you are having a problem, I have had a similar problem before, Lin has had a similar problem before, and someone else in the program is having the same problem right now. It is by working through real cases, and understanding how to use real tools, that you will become completely self-sufficient in solving these problems yourself.
If you want to stay anonymous on the group-coaching calls, you can arrange a pseudonym with us in advance, and call in without video. You can also send your thought work to me by email 24 hours before the coaching call. I promise at least a short response, and I could discuss your situation (anonymously) on the call.
These group-coaching calls will be recorded and made available to other members of the program. As a general policy in the Thinking Lab and this program, we ask that all participants keep whatever they hear confidential. Lin and I will of course keep it confidential. That said, if you fully prefer private, confidentiality-guaranteed coaching, it is available one-on-one with Lin Zinser for an additional fee.
Tuesday, January 4 – Friday, January 7: Daily Thought Work
On Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday, the thought work I send by email will be a variation on the theme established on Monday.
You may be thinking, why would I want to think about that same issue again? It won’t be the same issue. The situation will have changed a little or a lot since the previous day. Additionally, it is your job to find some new aspect of the situation that needs attention. If you have a challenging goal, you benefit tremendously by thinking for 15 minutes every day about how you’re going to achieve it.
Saturday, January 8: Celebrate your achievement so far
It’s the weekend. Time to celebrate. My goal with the Saturday emails is to make the thought work that day sound so delightful that you will stop and do it, even if you are taking Saturday off, and especially if you think you didn’t do enough in the past week to justify celebration.
If you’ve followed my work, you know I believe you build a happy life by focusing on gaining values, not avoiding threats. Well, you need to train your mind to see the values. For this, you need objective self-awareness. This is a skill you will be developing throughout the program. And we will focus on that especially on Saturdays.
Sunday, January 9: Review the week
As I mentioned, Sunday is a great day for review. On Sundays, I will send an email that recapitulates the goals of the previous week and encourages you to finish up and/or consolidate your gains so you are ready for the next week.
You will have finished the first full week in the program
Rinse and Repeat
You have now seen the pattern of the program. On Monday you get thought work on the theme for the week. The thought work on Tuesday through Friday will expand on that theme. On Saturday you celebrate. On Sunday you review the past week. Each week there will be two group-coaching calls you can attend to get some extra help. If you can’t attend, you can listen afterwards to see how others are dealing with the same kinds of issues you are.
You will keep getting daily emails, following this weekly pattern, for the remaining 7 weeks in the program. My goal is to keep these fresh, so you stay engaged. However, I’m anticipating that most participants will skip some days, either intentionally or accidentally. Some may choose to work the program only on weekdays, others only on weekends. Everyone will go through busy patches during which time it’s hard to catch up. So, like a good engineer, I’m building redundancy and flexibility into the system. If you miss one day, you do not need to go back to do the thought work you missed. You just carry on! The same issues will be addressed from another aspect, later that week or in another week.
It’s important that you don’t turn the thought work into a duty or chore. One of the themes of the program is that work needs to be selfishly motivating. The thought work is designed to help you think through your specific situation in a way that is helpful for you. By systematically doing this work every day, or at least most days, you will get practice turning on your critical faculty to figure out what you need to think about in order to actually make forward progress…rather than spinning in analysis paralysis.
If your 15-minute daily thinking seems unimportant, repetitive, or unhelpful, then you need to run — not walk — to the next coaching call to get support. In 15 minutes, you should always get a new insight. It should be worth the effort every single time. If it’s not, holler. This is a learnable skill that you will use for the rest of your life. Launch is a great opportunity to learn it.
Self-Study on the Side
During the two months of the program, I will recommend a series of 8 recordings to work through. This includes all of the recordings and bonuses in Do What Matters Most plus some recent material on values and self-esteem. You’ll want to go through all 8 recordings, in order, to get both the theoretical concepts and the practical tactics you need to achieve major goals. If you have already been through Do What Matters Most, I will suggest alternate recordings to listen to. If you join early, I recommend you listen to the recordings before we kick off work on Thinking Day.
In addition, you will also have access to all of the materials in the Thinking Lab. There are 19 self-study courses. There is a library of over 50 thinking tools. Plus, each month there are two new live classes and one open Q&A, either an “Overflow Session” or a “Thinking Day.”
You can participate in the Thinking Lab activities as much or as little as you want. On the coaching calls, Lin and I may refer you to Thinking Lab materials, particularly if they are directly relevant to your goal.
Monday, February 28: Time to Celebrate!
I hope you will join me on the February 28 to celebrate your accomplishments, and figure out where you are going from here. By this time in the program you will have seen the ups and downs of your cohort and will enjoy meeting for one last time to share your learnings and successes.
If you have any questions about what to do with your life or how to increase your happiness, I recommend taking Launch. It is a user friendly, non-threatening, positive, inspiring experience.
The only person who can achieve your goal is you. But we can give you the moral and practical support so that if you falter and don’t know how to get back on track, you have the resources you need to regroup, recommit, and restart progress.
Every day in the program you will receive an email in the morning. It is just the day’s 15-minute thought work. That is really all you need to do. You don’t need to get overwhelmed. You will be able to achieve your goal, one step at a time. Convinced?
I highly recommend Launch. Jean has unique insights into motivation that help you handle disruptive emotions and manage self-sabotaging thoughts. Her techniques are easy to implement, and they result in your making progress on major goals, such as a new career direction.
How will this “thought work” actually enable me to achieve my goal in 8 weeks? Isn’t action the key?
Of course, action is the key. Much of your thought work is going to be reviewing what you did and didn’t do, and why, so you can repeat successes and avoid repeating failure. The thought work is how you stay on top of action and make sure that you are giving this goal the attention it needs so it actually gets accomplished. The thought work is essential to the three promises I’m making:
Promise #1: You will set a goal or resolution that makes a material difference to your health, wealth, or relationships, which you will achieve in 8 weeks
How do I know it will make a material difference to your health, wealth, or relationships? Because you will figure that out as part of the thought work. That is a critical step to setting a goal that motivates you to take the action. You will have the benefit of my feedback to make sure that your goal is sufficiently meaningful that it can be worked on consistently over these two months.
How do I know you’ll achieve it in 8 weeks? Okay, there is a little bit of sleight of hand here. The thought work is going to guide you to set a stretch goal that is realistic. It will also ensure you re-assess its realism, if needed, as you take steps toward it. Some people in the program will eventually conclude that their initial idea for a goal is impossible to achieve on this time scale. If that’s the case for you, you will figure out what is possible and do that instead. But you won’t give up prematurely! The other two promises will ensure that.
If you signed up for the program in good faith, and have put in the effort to implement the advice, but it just doesn’t work for you, let me know by January 29.
The only requirement is that before I give you your money back, you agree to have a 30-minute conversation with me in which we can discuss what wasn’t working for you and why. This will enable me to fine-tune the program in the future and/or be more specific about who should and shouldn’t sign up for it.
I was getting settled in to listen to your Ending Procrastination course this afternoon when I had a sudden realization: I don’t have any procrastination that needs ending anymore! This is a massive change in my life; I would’ve identified procrastination as the internal obstacle to my happiness from the ages of 15 to about 25, and in the years since it’s still been a major problem.
The last 4 months or so have been different. I can’t think of a single time where procrastination has been an issue, and I don’t have any fear of it “rearing its head” at some unknown point in the future. And I haven’t even been trying to address this! Procrastination was something that was bad but manageable, not worth making a priority, and it’s gone!
It’s all down to your courses and the work I’ve been doing based on them. I have a much better sense of my values, how to manage my motivation, and how to identify and solve conflicts. Some of the progress is simply in renaming: What in the past I might have called “procrastination” I now see as a proper way to address my needs or handle new information. But a big part of it is that I don’t fall into the same conflicts or behavioral patterns anymore!
Thank you again for your wonderful work! I feel like the entire world is open to me and I could leap to the moon if I wanted!
Promise #2: You will troubleshoot and overcome any practical difficulties that stand in your way
I predict that every single person in the program will run into difficulties following through on his or her goal before the end of the program. Some will have problems the first day. Some may only have them at the end of the first month or later. But everyone will have problems. It’s inherent in pursuing a challenging goal. If you could achieve your goal without making uncomfortable changes to the status quo, you wouldn’t be enrolling in the program.
Here’s my second prediction: when you have problems, you’ll be tempted to avoid the issue. This is a predictable motivational event. If things don’t go well, you have something that looks like difficulty or failure, it will be unpleasant. Every person on the planet feels aversion to unpleasantness.
It is going to take a bit of effort to take a look at what happened and regroup. If you don’t have a system in place to help you do that, your goal will just mysteriously slip out of mind, perhaps even for a week or two at a time. If this happens to you, it will eventually pop back into mind, and you will feel guilty, because you’ve been ignoring it. That would make it even more unpleasant to examine, leading to greater aversion to it.
One of the key purposes of regular thought work is to prevent that kind of vicious cycle from starting. You will take a look at how things are going on a regular basis, in a neutral, non-self-critical way. You will learn to look at problems objectively, without jumping to the conclusion that something is wrong with you, or you’re “bad,” or “lazy.” There is no insulting yourself in the thought work. It is 100% constructive. If you have any trouble with the thought work turning into self-recriminations, run, do not walk, to the next coaching call. Lin and I can help you with that, to help you ensure that your thought work always helps you get oriented in a constructive, positive direction.
That said, you may need to develop some emotional skills to deal with the problems in a nonjudgmental, positive way. Hence the final promise:
Promise #3: You will build measurable emotional resilience to draw on as you pursue other challenging goals in the coming year
You can find a lot of sappy quotes about how failure is just a step on the road to success. And it’s not failure unless you give up. And it’s not failure, it’s a learning experience. And they’re all true. And that doesn’t make failure any fun. To anybody. Ever.
Therefore, I am not promising that the next two months will be fun. I expect you to experience some failure along the way, sooner or later.
What I am promising is to teach you skills for dealing with it, emotionally, so that you can come back and make a new effort.
This is the quality of emotional resilience, which you are going to measure and build throughout the 2-month program. How? Thought work. Yes, the thought work is how you build that strength. The thought work is designed to give you objective self-awareness. This means you are aware of your strengths and your weaknesses. Your skills and your limitations. Your motivation and your lack thereof. When you can be objective about what you bring to the table, you can set more realistic goals, and troubleshoot obstacles in a matter-of-fact, efficient manner.
Learning to do this may require some coaching. That’s why there are two coaching calls every week. If you run into a tough spot, you can get help within a few days. Of course, you can also ask for help by email. I promise at least a short response.
By the end of the program, you will have measurably more emotional resilience. This is a capacity that you can draw on for the rest of your life.
Putting in place a good, workable, easy-to-stick-to routine was the single most important thing I got from Launch. It alone was worth the price of admission. I’m now happier and more productive in my retirement, because I’m enjoying the self-satisfaction and the virtuous cycle of self-motivation that accompany that increased productivity.
How do I know I can help you?
I’ve been teaching these skills for a long time. Over the years, I have run several programs similar to this. In every case, the people who did the thought work in a structured way on a regular basis got amazing results. The people who used my goal-setting tools got amazing results. The people who learned the introspective tools got amazing results.
This particular program was run for the first time in January 2021, and it was a huge success. I created it with more support to make sure you do the work. I doubled down with daily emails and 8 group-coaching calls a month. It paid off. I have repeated it three times so far, and expect to continue offering it on a regular basis.
Why this design? It works. I got the idea for Launch when I checked out some competitors to the Thinking Lab and found some things they were doing that helped me be more accountable when I test-drove their programs. I adapted what I learned for the original Launch 21 program and it worked very well. In addition, Lin Zinser and I recently got certified by the Life Coach School in a unique coaching process that meshes with everything I’ve been teaching for 20 years. It helps ensure that you don’t just get advice on the calls, you learn how to do your own thinking and solve your own problems. It’s a very effective method that we’ve both found can help you re-set your approach in a short conversation of only 15-20 minutes.
The program has been extremely successful, as you can tell from the testimonials. I offer the money-back guarantee because the results from the first four rounds were not a fluke. I believe you can and will achieve the results I’ve promised, because I have built in more than enough support for anyone who puts in the effort. If I’m wrong, I need to know that.
As I tell people in the Thinking Lab, be a squeaky wheel. I am always eager for feedback, good and bad. If you raise an issue, and I see I need to add something to the program, you can bet I will. I may write a new article. I may set a topic for a class. I could even put together a new mini-course. I am committed to doing everything I can do, to support you in doing your own work.
Coaching Call Schedule
Friday, 12/31/21, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. ET
Monday, 1/3/22, 12 – 1 p.m. ET
Thursday, 1/6/22, 3 – 4 p.m. ET
Monday, 1/10/22, 8 – 9 p.m. ET
Thursday, 1/13/22, 12 – 1 p.m. ET
Monday, 1/17/22, 3 – 4 p.m. ET
Thursday, 1/20/22, 8 – 9 p.m. ET
Monday, 1/24/22, 12 – 1 p.m. ET
Thursday, 1/27/22, 3 – 4 p.m. ET
Monday, 1/31/22, 8 – 9 p.m. ET
Thursday, 2/3/22, 12 – 1 p.m. ET
Monday, 2/7/22, 3 – 4 p.m. ET
Thursday, 2/10/22, 8 – 9 p.m. ET
Monday, 2/14/22, 12 – 1 p.m. ET
Thursday, 2/17/22, 3 – 4 p.m. ET
Monday, 2/21/22, 12 – 1 p.m. ET
Thursday, 2/24/22, 3 – 4 p.m. ET
Monday, 2/28/22, 12 – 1 p.m. ET, Celebration
In Launch, I first learned how to streamline other activities to make the time for the one important initiative. It’s surprising how much you can achieve on an initiative with focus and great support. During the process I received personal suggestions of very valuable questions to consider that enabled me to make an important life decision and reach my goal. Plus I am glad I did the daily thought work, even if I didn’t think it applied to me. I always learned something about myself.
Let’s summarize exactly what you get
- A simple goal-setting process coming to you when you register
- The Thinker’s Toolkit mailed to your home (and soft copy)
- Day 1: Finalize your goal with help from Jean’s live group coaching as part of Thinking Day (part of the Thinking Lab)
- Daily: 15-minute follow-through process, coming to you by email each morning
- Weekly: Two live group-coaching sessions each week, to help you get out of your own way and/or apply tools to your situation
- Monthly: Two new live classes each month on managing your mind (part of the Thinking Lab)
- Monthly: One open Q&A (the “Overflow Session” or the “Thinking Day” in the Thinking Lab)
- A new tool for measuring emotional resilience (starting Day 2)
- Access to 19 self-study courses, including “Do What Matters Most,” “Tap Your Own Brilliance,” “Just-in-Time Planning,” and “Defining a Central Purpose” (part of the Thinking Lab)
- Access to a library of more than 50 Thinking Lab Tools that you can use to augment your thought work (part of the Thinking Lab)
- The skills you need to stick with and achieve challenging goals for the rest of your life
- Completion of your goal, and a chance to celebrate with others
Frequently Asked Questions:
I am already in the Thinking Lab. Is this included? No, but you qualify for a discount or an extension of your subscription, since the fee includes time in the Lab you’ve already paid for. Email me for details.
I participated in a previous episode of Launch or something similar. Do I get a discount on this one? Sorry, nope. There is only a discount for continuing clients.
How does this program relate to Do What Matters Most? Recordings of Do What Matters Most are included in the Launch as part of the curated content that you go through during the 8 weeks. But in this package, you get much more chance to apply the ideas, ask questions, and chew the material.
Do I really have to register by midnight December 30? Yes. The program starts December 31. Everyone will go through it in the same sequence. On December 31, as part of Thinking Day, I will be on the Zoom bridge from 10-12 Eastern, 2-3 Eastern, and 5-6 Eastern. I encourage you to attend live during one of the sessions to get help setting your goal!
That said, the page will stay up until Friday, January 7, mainly because some people in the Thinking Lab may attend Thinking Day and decide to add this on. You can join as long as the page is live, but no discounts, and you’ll need to hustle a bit in the first week!
What are the group-coaching calls? The group-coaching calls are designed to help you see what is getting in the way of following through. Come with questions about your daily 15-minute thought work, material from Do What Matters Most, and/or specific obstacles you run into. Note the calls will be run by Jean Moroney or occasionally Lin Zinser. The calls are generally on Mondays and Thursdays at noon, 3:00 p.m., or 8:00 p.m. Eastern. The time varies to accommodate people in different time zones. If you want to know the full schedule, see the sidebar at right.
How does the Launch relate to the Thinking Lab? As part of Launch, you get the whole 8 weeks of the program in the Thinking Lab, so that you have access to all of those resources while you are working toward your goal. The Launch program is like a deluxe membership in the Thinking Lab, because there are many more group-coaching opportunities.
Happy Goal Achievement Everyone!