Thinking backwards

This is also known as "begin with the end in mind". Let's touch on two common things here - goals and rewards.


Determine your goals / the desired end points, visualize as clearly as you could if it is what you desire, then work backwards from it in your mind. 

Yes, something like a movie rewind where you start by visualizing your future self with what you have achieved and slowly back to the current state. If you can't visualize too far out then set a nearer milestone. There can be multiple milestones before the end point.

In slowly going through the thought process, it might become clearer what you have got to do at this moment in your life. You might even manage to spot an obstacle or two.

In the midst of it, ask yourself some of these questions...

  • Is the goal that you are setting out to achieve realistic? 
  • Are the obstacles able to be overcome or circumvented?
  • How much time is required approximately?
  • Would you do better to modify or seek out alternatives?

It is never wise to jump headlong into something that you cannot clearly visualize. Eg. Working hard when your ladder is leaning against the wrong wall.

Not saying though that everything will work out as thought, but with some concrete ideas, it is more likely that the goal can be achieved.


There are 2 choices for you. Both offer the same attractive reward. Which would you choose?

Think for a moment.





Here are my answers.

1. The one that requires the least effort and cost for reaping the rewards.

2. The one with the least risks involved.

3. The one with the easier exit pathway when you got the reward. No aftermath liability.

Of course, the best choice is one that readily presents you with all three but that can be highly unlikely. 

What you can do is run through what are the "cost" of each answer above. 

The "cost" should be as definite as possible so that you can weigh them to find out the eventual choice you should go for. Eg. If the one with the easier exit may pose the highest risk or require tremendous effort input, would you still go for it?

If you are not sure about the costs involved, perhaps you need to do more research. 

It is never wise to jump headlong into something if you cannot fathom what does it cost you in the end.

Photo by Fakurian Design on Unsplash

Thinking backward could be the skill that you need to help you move forward.

There are some games can help you to hone this skill such as Mouse!. Warning - it's pretty addictive.


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