The last weeks in the other achieve a goal posts it was all about part of a plan I have. How I divided those into smaller pieces of tasks, to get closer to my goal. Let’s talk about how to pursue a goal in general this week. Looking back on how to improve achieving as a reminder might help. Everyone can use some tips and tricks to get started from time to time.
So here they are, list-wise.
- Choose a smart goal
When talking about smart, think about The SMART method.
It stands for: Specific, Measurable, Attainability, Relevant and Time based.
I want to lose weight isn’t specific. I want to lose 5 kilo is.
Define your goal’s measurement. What’s required to be able to say you reached your goal?
Are you sure it’s a goal that can be reached?
Example: becoming a ballet dancer at the age of 40 most likely isn’t a realistic goal.
Choose something that in any shape or form can be reached. If not attainable in your dream scenario, it might be possible to reach it in a different form close to your original goal.
Choose a goal that fits your personality.
Dont chase a goal that merely is other people’s expectations close and around you.
It has to be something you truly want. Don’t live for other’s expectations. Create your own.
Example: Wanting to write a book, while you can’t even sit down to write more than a short article.
You either are going to sit down daily and write a considerable amount of words, because you truly want to achieve having written at least one book in your life or let it go. It’s not a goal that fits you.
- Time based
Make sure you set a time on your goal.
You need a deadline to set yourself into action mode. Without a date set, you think you have all the time in the world. A year later you realise you still haven’t reached what you set out to do.
Necessary: Write this smart method of your goal in a document. Keep it at a place where you spot it regularly. Like a real life list pinned to a board or placed on your desktop digitally. Take a look at Social Plan and Schedule, because that will help you along in getting a grip on your goal.
You can keep talking about your goals or you can start on getting them done.
- Define what’s needed to achieve this goal.
Cut up the big plan into smaller pieces, by writing down all the needed tasks.
Note down the options you have for your end goal. What are all the ways you could achieve it and feeling you have reached what you want?
- Paint a picture in your head.
Visualize specifically how it would be if you already had achieved what you have in mind. Ask yourself questions about how close you are towards your goal and what still needs to be done to make the picture in your head true.
- Stay inspired and motivated
There will come a moment during the achievement that you feel you’re at a stand still.
Then you need to find renewed inspiration and motivation to set a new step forward.
You could read ‘how to find cheerful encouragement‘ to discover what works for you in this manner.
- Ask others
Find people who already achieved what you want and reach out to them. How did they do it? What skills do they have that you need to learn as well? What can be learned from others experiences?
- Learn what you need to learn
A lot of free sources are out there. Use those, to get you closer to your goal.
Whatever you do: Keep believing you can achieve what you want. As soon as you doubt yourself, ask yourself why you doubt. Is it an irrational fear or is there ground for doubt. The latter means you have to explore more how you can take away the weaker points in your goal. How are you going to make sure you can get around those?
Best is to create two lists.
- A list with all the earlier achievements that have a connection with your goal.
One that tells you what you already have gathered.
The list will make clear how far away from your goal you are.
- A list of all your earlier achievements in life.
This will show you what you’re capable of.
Sometimes we tend to forget what we already have achieved.
It’s necessary to confront yourself. It will probably give you a boost that you have done more in life so far than you actually realised.
The list under 1. is meant as a guidance. The one under 2. is there for motivation and support.
You can do it if you set your mind to it and have a clear idea what to do next.
Don’t forget: your mistakes. Keep those in mind. Just as a reminder that you should use a different approach to succeed this time or at least to reach other results. You can’t expect positive changes if you keep doing things the same way that already proved it isn’t working. Change your ways and get different, possibly better, results.
How small it might be, if you reached a deadline you set, celebrate it.
You worked on a goal and achieved what you set out to do.
Take pause and applaud yourself. You have done a good thing!
End results are most important, but the way towards those results, count as well.
You have to enjoy the road to the end result.
If you’re not willing to give yourself a pat on the back for a (minor) milestone, who else will?
- Your inner voice
You would think your inner voice has the best intentions with you, but unfortunately, that isn’t always the case. Mostly we’re our own enemies. Our inner voice is there to critisize ourselves, point out the mistakes we made, what we didn’t achieve.
Your ‘voice’ sometimes seems putting more effort into bringing you down than to lift you up.
Time to smother that inner voice a bit. Dive into the dialogue with that inner voice and start pointing out positives. Defend yourself. Your inner voice won’t do it. Don’t listen to your own excuses not to do something. Get up and do them or go back to choosing a relevant goal.
Without feeling a passion when you think about your near future plans, it won’t work out.
You need determination to get what you want. Especially during set-back moments they sure will come. Then you need to be able to dip into passion for the goal, discipline to keep working on it and determination that you won’t give up as soon as a set-back arrives.
- Prepare for set-backs
Life isn’t a smooth ride. It will throw difficulties your way you’ll have to overcome.
How you deal with those is what defines you in succeeding or not.
Give the set-back some thought, but don’t let it throw you off your trail completely.
Maybe you can’t do a certain task at that moment, but then try another of your list and work on that. Left or right, make sure you keep working on your plan, however small the work might be.
Pausing the whole plan altogether might mean you never will pick it up again.
Be aware of that.