As the clock ticks toward a new beginning, Lexi Manges joins forces with David Lowe to reveal the transformative power of effective goal setting. Imagine turning your wildest aspirations into tangible triumphs; that’s exactly what we dissect through the SMART framework, ensuring your objectives are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound. Our personal tales and professional tips aren’t just about reaching high; they’re about mapping the journey there, step by step, covering personal growth to career milestones and spiritual development.

Embark on a candid voyage with us as we recount the highs and lows of chasing dreams, like my own quest for the title of Mr. Wisconsin, and how it taught me valuable, albeit tough, lessons on sacrifice and focus—a narrative reminiscent of Steve Jobs’ own reflections. We also dive into the critical role of accountability and the merits of partnership in goal attainment, turning solo missions into shared adventures. Before you dash off to jot down those New Year’s resolutions, let us guide you in crafting goals that stick and plans that propel you forward. And stay tuned—our next episode promises to arm you with time management tactics to keep those goals within your grasp.

Lexi Manges: 0:00

Hi everybody, welcome to Prepare to Win, Living and Selling with Excellence. Today we are going to talk about setting goals for the year.

David Lowe: 0:06

We’re going to help you become better and up your game in 2024. Stay tuned.

Lexi Manges: 0:21

Hi everyone, welcome to Prepare to Win, living and Selling with Excellence. I’m Lexi Mangus. I’m the training coordinator at Automotive Sales Coach. I’m here with the Automotive Sales Coach, david Lowe, and today we’re going to talk about goal setting. Now, david, why did you choose to talk about goal setting now?

David Lowe: 0:39

All right. Well, it’s that time of year, right? As a matter of fact, Lex, thanks for joining us. Grace is on vacation. That’s what people do, right?

Lexi Manges: 0:46


David Lowe: 0:47

Well-deserved and I’m glad you could join us because this is really a big thing. Right now everybody’s thinking about New Year’s resolutions, right, and it’s kind of a joke that I think it’s like February 18th is fast food day Because everybody makes a New Year’s resolution and I’ll go in January. I go to the gym every morning. You know it was my habit to go every morning before coming up. I love it. It strengthens me, and not just my body but my mind. My routine is really a thing that I count on and a lot of people make that New Year’s resolution to develop that routine, that habit of working out, getting in better shape, and so the gym is packed in January. Where I normally park up front now I’m parking in the back and they say that by February 18th people are back eating fast food.

Lexi Manges: 1:39

That’s so funny. I said the same thing because I used to work at the gym and we would say everybody would be gone by Valentine’s Day, oh, by Valentine’s Day.

David Lowe: 1:47

All right. So that’s true, I mean, I think so. It’s not just us. So I think that it’s normal to want to be better. That’s the point of this podcast better today than yesterday. Today, we recognize everybody has a flame to be better than they are. We know that. The question is, are we taking action on it? And this whole podcast, and the episodes we do, are designed to encourage people to live, seek excellence in their life, live and work with excellence, do everything with their whole heart, their whole might. And so we’ve been really delving into the soft skills. And you said why goal setting? The time of the year, perfect time to say goal setting, is kind of a soft skill. There’s a way to do it and a way to do it well. And so I thought we would talk about how do we move from a New Year’s resolution, which we probably will keep, to, maybe setting a goal that helps improve our life. So I thought I would. What is a goal?

Lexi Manges: 2:50

Well, there’s two different things, right? You have a dream and a goal. A goal you have steps and ways to get there, right?

David Lowe: 2:58


Lexi Manges: 2:58

A dream is a wish.

David Lowe: 3:00

Okay. So people say I want to blank, and that might be a dream, it might be a goal. We know the difference, because a goal typically has more of a vision to it. As a matter of fact, the desire to get something or be something can move from a dream to a goal if we back it up with an action plan. In fact, there was an acronym out there called SMART Goals.

Lexi Manges: 3:25

Yeah, practice it so many times in school, right? Yeah, it’s here all the time.

David Lowe: 3:29

And now listen somebody. A real goal, not a dream, is typically specific. It’s clear. You know what I mean. It’s typically something that you can measure. It’s typically something within your reach. I mean you’re going to have to stretch to get there, but it’s obtainable. It’s typically something that’s relevant to your life and it’s typically something that’s on a timetable, meaning not someday, but by this time, right? Well, guess what? We just described, smart, right. So I think that whoever created the SMART acronym really just took it from studying what goals were. It’s not the other way around. We use SMART to create the goals. A great goal is going to be something that’s specific, that we want. It’s measurable, it’s obtainable, it’s relevant and, of course, there’s a timetable to get it. So I think it’s really important that we understand that it’s cool to talk about things, but if we really want to obtain those things, become that person or get that thing, we have to set a goal.

Lexi Manges: 4:33

Yeah, agree.

David Lowe: 4:35

All right. So I mean I think that all of us I think everybody listening out there has probably had goals they set in their life, even small goals they set, and so the goal sets in motion the actions to get it. I’m thinking about my life and really, without knowing it, has been a series of goal setting. I think in seventh grade I wanted to build. I was a skinny little kid. I wanted to build muscle. I had a goal of having muscle and so I got Arnold’s book and worked out and got my right. I wanted to play bass, so I bought a bass. And I bought a Mel Bay book and playing bass and a Rush Music book and learn. So you set these things that you want. I wanted to become a bass player. That’s something I want to become. Muscles are something I wanted to have. I think that becoming a manager, becoming a top salesman, or goals I can remember wanting to buy my first house. That was a goal.

Lexi Manges: 5:36

So you’re saying that you’re putting goals in different areas of your life too. It’s not just you’re focusing on one area. You’re trying to be well-rounded, right.

David Lowe: 5:45

Well, I think that. Well, I wanted to talk a little bit about that because not setting goals properly can cause you not to be well-rounded. But, yeah, goals can really fit all the areas of your life Personal, professional, spiritual, financial, right. There’s a lot of areas, those seven key areas of your life. They can fit those. We’ll talk about that in just a little bit. But as we go down and we say I want to buy a house, what does it take to do it? So having a goal is more than just simply having a dream. Having a dream is something you’re willing to pay the price to get.

Lexi Manges: 6:28

Right, and what if you don’t know how to accomplish that goal?

David Lowe: 6:30

We’re gonna talk about some of those things right now and how to find that, but I believe honestly that almost everything you want to know how to do there’s information on it and so, but you have to look at your specific. You want to develop the know-how. You want to study somebody who is where you want to go Exactly. It’s one of the simplest ways to do it. But I want to share a couple of things. This book made an impact on me. The attitudes are contagious. For those on YouTube you can see it. Everybody else she can’t pages falling out of it. So I don’t know. I’ve had it for years. In fact it was a friend’s book that I never returned. Anyway, there’s a section on goals setting here. I always thought it was interesting. I know there’s tons of studies, but it was kind of interesting. In here they studied. It was a study of some Harvard students and they found out it talks about how many set goals and so you have kind of accomplished students and they realized that only about 5% of the people they’re actually set and pursued goals.

Lexi Manges: 7:31

Which is crazy because they’re like the top people, right. You get into Harvard, and then only a small selection of them actually set goals.

David Lowe: 7:38

Yeah, and probably the example of their parents. Probably accomplished a lot to get in there, whatever yeah yeah, yeah. So you think that cycle so yeah, so surprising. But it was kind of cool study because 10 years later they followed up with the same students and they found that 93% of the wealth of the 100 students belong to those five 93.

Lexi Manges: 7:59


David Lowe: 8:01

So we say, does setting goals help you accomplish things? I think we all know they do. This is one of my favorite books too. The greatest salesman in the world Sometimes people think I’m a salesman for that company because I talk about it so much. It was a book that changed my life to 10 scrolls. And then, if you haven’t read Agnus Dino, the greatest salesman was really, really on the terms of what we’re doing, living and selling with excellence. And there’s 10 principles in there. The one principle, number eight I will multiply my value 100 fold. So school late talks about becoming more multiplying your value being more of a benefit. And how will I accomplish this? First, I’ll set goals for the day, the week and the month, the year and my life. Just as rain must fall before the wheat will crack and the shell will sprout, so I must have objectives before my life will crystallize and setting my goals. I will consider my best performance in the past and multiply by 100. So this is talking about not just setting goals, but setting high goals. Right, there’s this white, you know. So setting goals has been a topic of people forever, and the problem is is that people that are seeking to be better are setting goals and pursuing goals, while most of us are showing up and hoping they happen right. So how do we move, as you said, from the dreamer to the goal setter? Okay, before I get into that, I wanna share Salomon’s vision process and I’d like to share, I think, some ideas how to come up with good goals and go about it. And I think we said how do I accomplish my goal, which all Salomon’s vision process? Before we do that, I do wanna warn everybody out here to be careful the goals you set.

Lexi Manges: 9:52

Why is that?

David Lowe: 9:53

Well, what if you set the wrong goal? So goals require focus, determined action. Right, yeah, and could well. Let me give you a story. So I set a goal of becoming Mr Wisconsin in the 90s. I wanted to compete. I wanted I wanna look like Rambo. That was by and by and Mr Wisconsin was the thing. And it really fit my lifestyle. I was in the fit, I was relative, it was specific, when was measurable? I either went or I don’t Obtainable. I thought I could do it. I was in pretty good shape relative to my life, and timed April of 2001,. That had to be in the best shape of my life. That’s when it had to be so and I pursued that with all my heart and my mind. The problem was I used to have this kind of the YMCA focus on my life, mind, body and spirit. This goal became so strong that it became body, body, body. Now, what happened during my life when I was so focused on this goal? Cause, whatever you say yes to, you’re saying no to something else and as I made choices to accomplish my goal, what did I leave in my wake? Well, I can tell you, two years later, I was divorced and my whole life changed. I believe it was the beginning. So this good goal, this quality goal that I set, that you would say is something worthy of pursuing being in the best shape of your life at a moment in time physical fitness, worthy pursuit, actually, because I did it wrong might have worked against me in my entire life. I got in the best shape I was in, but that’s it. So we could say, steve Jobs did the same thing, his famous words at the end of his life. People would say I’ve reached a pinnacle of success. They look at my life from the outside and then he goes on to say but outside of work I had no joy. And then he goes on if you haven’t read his words, google Steve Jobs last words. Read them and contemplate and really kind of consider those as your setting goals. Are you pursuing the right thing or are you heading in the right direction? Okay, so we talked a lot about goals. We know that goals are different than dreams. We know that goals have a plan. We know that goals will help us accomplish what we want. We also know to be careful setting them. So how do you set them? So I’d like to share with you one of my favorite principles and, as you know, I talk about Solomon, like Solomon, for 3,000 years ago he wrote a book called Proverbs. I talk about that a lot. Proverbs is a book of wisdom, eternal words of wisdom. The way things are, stephen Covey called them natural laws same thing. And Solomon wrote this book, as said to his children, so that they would live well. And he said some mighty powerful things. One of them related to goals. He said well, there’s no vision that people perish Now, today, they’d say if you don’t know where you’re going, any road will get you there.

Lexi Manges: 13:05

Same thing right.

David Lowe: 13:07

So with no vision. So what does he mean? Vision? So let’s break it down. Vision is where are you going, but it’s more than that. So if I’m gonna set a goal my vision what do I want? That’s the beginning of it. Now the question is why do I want it? And I think that sometimes that’s the last thing considered. I mean, do I really want it? Because am I willing to pay the price to get it?Lexi Manges: 13:40

Yeah, so why did you want Mr. Wisconsin then?

David Lowe: 13:44

You know what I saw, Rambo, when I was about 19. And that was one of I was always in good shape and I was kind of had that Sylvester Stallone vibe, and so that’s kind of what I yeah, so like, if you’re not watching, you’re listening.

Lexi Manges: 13:58

David looks exactly like Rambo.

David Lowe: 14:01

Exactly, but right so I don’t know why. And so it was like being in this at this one point in time, being in the best shape that I could be, in what I saw in Rambo, that kind of. So again, I had a successful business and that kind of successful life and it gave me time to pursue this. I didn’t realize that would be so all consuming. And listen, you go through history. A lot of people have made this. They’ve accomplished great things and lost a lot in the pursuit of those great things and I just wonder how many people at the end of their life would be like Steve Jobs saying this right, so you gotta have vision. What do I want and why do I want it Now? You gotta want it a lot Cause gotta tell you something, in the pursuit of Mr Wetzkonson, there are a lot of pain and a lot of discipline involved to get there, a lot of starvation they’re right, I was hungry all the time.

Lexi Manges: 14:56

But you say you went down to a thousand calories.

David Lowe: 15:00

Yeah, so that last year, cutting from 183 to 154, where I competed at, had to really restrict my diet. A month before competition I weighed 164 and I was starving and I was ripped and I thought I can’t do anymore, I’m done. I can’t do this anymore. That close I’ll never make it and I’m too small to compete at the next weight up. And my trainer just grabbed. He’s so strong, al hi Al. We’re gonna talk to Al, by the way, in one of our future episodes, cause he’s trained a ton of champions. You want to talk about preparing to win? Al of Richmond training in Alton, wisconsin. He’s an absolute expert on preparing people to win. Anyway, al grabs my skin to show me how much fat was still there. He’s so strong. Yeah, the pinch does I mean, he’s so strong he could have found it with nothing, but anyway, that kept me going the next 10 pounds to accomplish that goal. So what do you want? Why do you want it? Because are you willing to pay the price to get it? Now, that has to be. How am I gonna get it? What are the steps to get it? Now, I didn’t know. I was in good shape. I hired Al, a former Mr Florida. I took one look at the guy and says he knows what to do. And he did know what to do. So if you want to accomplish something, find somebody who’s accomplished them and mimic them. Yeah right, a mirror of their success.

Lexi Manges: 16:25

Yeah. Why would you reinvent the wheel when somebody’s already done it? Just get their advice from them, talk with them, watch them observe.

David Lowe: 16:32

Yeah, that’s actually called success modeling. Find somebody who’s doing it well and, mom, now you don’t have to stop there, you can keep going beyond them, but that gives you at least a developed that know-how right, and so you need a game plan for it. So I would say, today, whatever you decide, I think that you could put down on a piece of paper over the holidays, you can spend some time in reflection, draw a line down the middle and you might want to put on one side things I want and on the other side who I want to become. Two different goals. One is physical things to get, and who I want to become is becoming better today than yesterday and you might want to just have that out and jot on it and then identify things that you wouldn’t want to change this next year, or things that you would like to improve, or things you would like to become, or things you would like to get. You make a list of them and then you can go through and kind of circle what has the highest value to you?

Lexi Manges: 17:32

Right, and if you write it down, sometimes it’ll also be like oh, I put it on paper, now I have to follow through with it, yeah well writing it down and commit to is a big thing, and so I think a lot of people will say this I’d like to lose weight this year.

David Lowe: 17:48

Okay, so write it down, but be specific. So you have to start with where you are now. You have to be specific to have a plan. Where am I now, specifically, where do I wanna go? So step one where am I now? Where do I wanna go? Number three why do I wanna go there? Am I willing to do what it takes to get there? And then I guess the thing is, what is the game plan to get there? If you don’t know how to lose that weight, you need to go online and study people who’ve done it. Don’t fall for the gimmicks and the hacks. If you wanna lose weight, I’m just gonna tell you you’re gonna have to exercise and diet. There’s no other way All the gimmicks and that other than surgery. But forget that If you wanna lose weight, there’s gonna be two things You’ve gotta burn more calories and you gotta consume less calories. That’s just the facts. If you’re not willing to do those two things, then probably move on to a different goal. That’s the real life. But there’s so much information how to do those two things online. We can’t say we don’t know how. If you wanna know how it’s how, how about I wanna save money for a house? That’s a big one that’s a big one. So how do you do that? My first house we wanted to have 10 grand and I think I was 23 years old and so we thought, started with how much money we had, and then we looked at the paycheck and said, how much do we have to save? And so out of every check we took X amount and put it in an envelope for the house.

Lexi Manges: 19:17

Seized out of sight on mind that that money is not there for spending. That is for this.

David Lowe: 19:21

That’s it, and I know that there’s some guys that teach this envelope process. I never studied the envelope process, I just knew if I would separate the money and not touch it, I would have it. So just putting that aside, and sure enough, we said in two years we’ll have the money, and we did as long as we would diligently pursue. So a lot of people forget that it’s really the game plan is important, but it’s the activity that gets you there. You can’t say I’m gonna save money this month but not next month, or I’m gonna watch what I eat today but not the rest of the week.

Lexi Manges: 19:55

Or I’m gonna exercise once a week.

David Lowe: 19:58

Solomon said the diligent person prospers, and I believe that’s true. All right, so if you wanna, goals will help you accomplish things and saying, well, maybe Solomon’s vision is what you can do to set it on paper, right.

Lexi Manges: 20:10

What do I?

David Lowe: 20:10

want. Why do I want it? How am I gonna get it? Am I willing to pay the price for it? Right, you said game planning. So maybe writing those out, putting them in a smart goal, specific, measurable how you gonna measure it, and then it’s attainable, how you gonna get there. Like saving for that house. If I said I’m gonna save this much a month and I didn’t make that much, it’s not attainable. So you gotta look at realist. And then, of course, relative to my life, is it meaningful? That’s the why. And then a timetable when I’m gonna be done. So you might wanna just sit down and do that. So I think you could. Physical goals you said your whole life. Relational goals Maybe the goal is to improve. I wanna be a better husband, I wanna improve the relationship with my wife. So I was like where am I now?

Lexi Manges: 20:57

What would?

David Lowe: 20:57

I like it to look like. Why would I like it to look like that?

Lexi Manges: 21:02

I wonder if people don’t set that one as much. I see physical a lot, I see financial goals a lot, but I don’t see too many relational goals.

David Lowe: 21:12

Yeah, I think we’re really. We really are consumers, aren’t we?

Lexi Manges: 21:17

Yeah, well, and that goes right into what we’ve been talking in other episodes right now, those soft skills too, yes yeah, that’s exactly what becoming more Financial, professional, spiritual.

David Lowe: 21:29

It’s not, you can’t touch it, but I mean, where’s my time with God look like, and how is that relationship, mental and personal? There’s those seven key kind of areas that people know about, but really I think that you have to. Whatever’s you value is what you need to pursue. I don’t know if people take time to write down what they value, and I think they should, so I think it starts there. So I wanna say the last thing I wanna talk about you gotta have accountability. Aren’t sharpens, aren’t. If you’re gonna have a goal, announce it to the world and you’ll be held accountable, right, but you said, write it down and post it, so you’re gonna need help. Yeah, discipline and change your behavior is hard work. I think you also might want to give yourself a break. Two steps forward, one step back, don’t stop. Yeah don’t expect perfection. It takes a little bit, you know, to get going. I think having a partner, like, if you want to diet, diet with somebody else. If you want to work out where, if Run run with someone.

Lexi Manges: 22:31

If you want to develop your skill sets, find somebody to practice with yeah, and maybe you live with somebody and they have the same goals as you do it together do it together.

David Lowe: 22:40

So I think accountability is crucial. So really, I just want to get this episode out. Yeah, as people are beginning the new year and deciding what do we really want Some people might call that a new year’s resolution which are rarely followed up on. We’re saying turn that new year’s resolution, that dream, into a goal by creating a game plan and discipline yourself to pursue it. Does that make sense?

Lexi Manges: 23:08

Yeah, and I don’t think there’s any limit to planning for this either. The more you think about it, the more you put it down, the more, the more likely it is to come true.

David Lowe: 23:16

You might adjust on the fly, as you know, right. So this is yours, is personal, so I know if you go online, there’s a million. You can find a million ways. They’ll talk about goal setting and stuff like that. You, you, you just really, in my opinion, need to spend some time Thinking about what you want and apply in Solomon’s vision process. So this, this was a great episode to set the stage for the companion episode, which is time management pumps because if you’re gonna, if you’re gonna set a goal, you have to change your behavior, requires some time. You’re gonna have to say no to some things, to say yes to maybe your new goal, aren’t you? So I hope you join us for that next episode and, as always, I know Grace always saying hey, like us, follow us. That’s so we want to tell you to do that. We appreciate you being with us and we want to challenge you this week Live and sell with excellence and really let’s prepare to be better in 2024 by sitting down and really setting some goals good selling.

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