How to improve achieving

Trying to reach your goals
You have found your niche, your passion. Finally you know what you want. Then what.
Now you have to prepare, to reach your finish. Even if you already are on your way, this article can bring renewed wish, a guideline and inspiration. It’s after all an ongoing learning curve.


You need a plan
Consider your goal, any goal, as a project. When you start a project, you also need to have a detailed plan. Take your goal that serious and create a thoughtful plan. Look at the matter as a business type plan.
Man, that is work! Yes, it is. If you want to achieve something, you’ll have to work for it. If you cut corners, you might not get what you want. That would be too bad. Plus, you need a related schedule.

For both you can create a document in a word processor software or presentation type document with slides.
I created a PowerPoint presentation with a template slide to re-use over and over for my schedule. In there, I keep track of what I need to do and what I have done. Specify those to do’s into smaller tasks. Start with a basic template plan and schedule. While using those, you improve along the way until it totally suits your needs.

Determine the needed skills and knowledge
Depending on what you want, you have to think about what you need to get it. Otherwise you can’t specify your upcoming tasks.
You equally have to know what you already have in order. That could shorten your longer-term to do list. When you have a list of what you already achieved, through other ways, and what you didn’t reach yet, you know what you have to do. Make sure you get the knowledge you lack.

You read until the cows come home, and long after, and practise with the read theory.
You probably are familiar with the term RTFM. In case you don’t: Read The Fucking Manual.
It counts for everything. Either it is learning software or a certain subject, you need to read about it a lot and practise. How else will you ever learn to use new information and skills?

Don’t get discouraged if you find some things hard to understand. Keep trying to understand. If one article, book, text or otherwise doesn’t make that happen, try another one. Somewhere there’s someone who has written about it, made a tutorial video and is able to make you understand.

If you are in the same place as I, then you don’t have money to hand out left and right to gain what you want. Then your monetary investments will be low, but your time investment will be very high.
Take the time to learn and practise the tasks you can’t delegate or hire someone for.
If you can afford it, take relevant courses. Otherwise, dive into the matter yourself, there’s a lot of free info out there. It’s just that you then have to gather the relevant parts of a subject yourself. Yes, gather. You have to make notes and start to build an archive with subject documents to keep oversight in what you’re learning.
Think about your earlier creations, an article, an image you created in Photoshop or any other product. Go back to that earlier work and improve it. Don’t see it as a waste of time. If a certain product in any shape or form has waited somewhere for a while and you look at it again, you find new ways for improved change. A oppertunity to practise your improved skills.

Develop and improve
Don’t ever think you know enough. It’s never enough. Technology is changing, trends are changing, the world and the knowledge in it is constantly evolving. You have to try to keep up.

Besides that, there’s your character. No, their likely isn’t anything wrong with you, but it can’t hurt to get 2.0 versions of some of your characteristics. Find the weak spots in yourself and work on those or work around them. Don’t only look at the flaws, but also at your stronger points. Make a list of those as well. Only then you know what to work on and what to benefit from.

Take action and be patient
There comes a time you”re done with the temporary filled in framework of your plan. Don’t perfect it yet. It’s time for action now. Just do what you have noted down, day after day, step by step.

Achieving a certain goal mostly doesn’t happen overnight. You have to give and invest time before you can pick the fruits of your labour. See your goal as a part-time project job, next to your regular job, or as a valuable part of a bigger plan.
Don’t forget to prioritize. You can’t do everything! At least, you can’t at once or in a small amount of time.

Hope for the best
You will encounter set-backs and bad days. Don’t panic and try to relativize.
Almost for every practical problem there’s a solution. You only have to find it, so keep looking.
Hope, at less good moments, will keep you going. Sometimes a break of a day or two will help as well.
It can cause a fresh perspective and renewed courage to continue.
Imagine and visualize the best outcome.

Whatever you do, don’t ever give up.
You wouldn’t want to grow old, be on your death-bed and think ‘I should have’.

Key points summary

  • Detailed plan: Business type plan
  • Schedule: Keep track of your activities in a format style set-up document
  • Lists: Have one for skills, knowledge and characteristics, the plusses and the negatives
  • Invest what you can spare
  • Improve creations, weaker skills and characteristics
  • Keep taking action and stay on top of prioritized tasks

Of course, this is a general guideline. A way to get you started and a way to keep you going. What you need to do, is personalize it to your specific plan in reaching your goals. It needs adjusting to fit your personality. What would work for me, might as well not work for you at all. That’s the reason I couldn’t be more specific.

One thing we do have in common, when you read this. We want to achieve something and this general article provides a generic plan to help you on your way, as it helps me on mine.

Yes, I’m not already established. I don’t have it under the belt. I do however have determination in getting what I want. Never will I get there if I don’t have in mind specifically what I need to do. And I want to share with you what I learn on my way.

2 comments on “How to improve achieving
  1. Sherri says:

    HaHa…RTFM. I’ll never forget that one now after reading this! Surprising how many people don’t do that and then can’t understand why they can’t get ‘it’, whatever ‘it’ is, to work properly!! You sound very organised Mirjam, I need to get better. Great post with very helpful ideas, thank you 🙂

  2. It is very helpful to read how a (software) program works. Anything for that matter. Some people might think they can find out quicker by skipping. In the end, they loose more time by just starting without reading.
    If someone isn’t a fervent reader of manuals, then by all means, search for a video tutorial. 🙂
    I feel the same way, I need to get better. Therefore, I will also dive further into time management and prioritizing. I want to do as much as I can, in as little time as possible.
    Of course, in a manner that the work is done well, not in a bungling kind of way.
    You will find articles about that at some point, as I want to share what I have learned.
    Nice to hear you find the ideas helpful.
    Certainly I will try to repeat that with future articles.

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