When most people come up with something they want, they usually focus on the “what” and “how” behind that desire. However, it’s the “why” that carries the passion and often determines whether your desired outcome ever gets achieved.

So let me share with you a simple exercise to help you get more of what you want.

First, begin by creating a circle and label it with the word “what.” Then add a circle inside that circle and label it “how.” Then, finally, add a third circle inside those two and label it “why.”

Now, make sure you’re actually writing these details on a piece of paper. Not only does writing enable a higher level of thinking, it causes you to use more senses. The more senses you use, the more engaged your brain gets.

So once you have your circles drawn, go through these 7 steps:

Step 1. Answer this question: What do you really want?

Be very clear with your intentions.

Step 2. Answer this question: Why do you really want it?

Explain why achieving this outcome is so important to you.

Step 3. Answer this question: Why don’t you have this desired item/outcome right now?

Please note, this is where coaching comes into play because it helps you uncover the root problem. Is it a mental or behavioral challenge? Do you need a certain process or skills?

Is your first inclination to put this off, attack this exercise or just pass on it? Remember, how you do something is how you do everything!

Step 4. Create your strategy plan.

If you keep doing what you have always done, you will keep getting the same outcome. The strategic plan is where you look at the “how” behind your desired outcome.

Step 5. Determine your first action.

What will you do first to move toward your goal? Be specific.

Also, use the power of momentum to your advantage. A body in motion tends to stay in motion, and a body at rest tends to stay at rest. So the key to making a commitment is to take your first step within 24 hours.

Set yourself up for an easy win. Because if it is easy, you will do it! And by achieving something (or getting a win) you build up your self-confidence.

6. Make a commitment.

Devote yourself to taking simple, doable actions. How do you eat an elephant?

One bite at a time.

So just move toward the direction you want to end up. You can even create a statement like this:

I FULL NAME commit to MY FIRST ACTION, no matter what, before DATE AND TIME OF DAY tomorrow.

Then send this to a friend, wife/husband, print it out and put it somewhere you will always see it. That way you keep the thought in front of your mind. This helps you stay accountable and if you need support, you have others who are aware of your goal.

7. Reward yourself.

As humans, we love rewards and receiving immediate gratification. So find ways to reward yourself for behaviors you want to keep doing.

By going through these steps, you’ll have a better chance at being successful in creating the lifestyle you want. The key is to really understand your “why” because it creates motivation and gets you into action.