Here you are reading an article about keeping to your goals. You obviously care. So, whether your commitment to your goals has hit a speed bump or is as strong as ever, recommit right now to attaining them. To help you up your game, make the statement of your goals more tangible. There are several simple steps you can take to put your commitments out in the world.
- First, write your goals down including writing them out with pen and paper. People who do this are forty percent more likely to achieve their goals.
- Next, tell other people. You don’t have to make a big deal of it. Just let others know you are making an effort and letting them know to make it more real for you.
- With your goals recorded and announced, create reminders for yourself. Add reminders as events in your calendar. If you use a voice assistant like Alexa, set verbal reminders. Add multiple reminders at a frequency that works for you. You can also stick a post-it on your desk or leave a note on your fridge. Change your reminders up over time so that you don’t become blind to them.
- In keeping with the write it down theme, make a point of writing down your progress. Record when you are on track and when you are falling behind. Make a point of taking note of what is contributing to your success or struggles. Not only will this exercise provide you with insights into what works for you, it will keep you more engaged in your efforts.
If you have ever set out to lose some weight, you have likely felt the frustration of how long it takes to drop a noticeable number of pounds. When a goal is going to take some time to achieve, it’s easy to get discouraged along the way. When the progress feels slow, focus on the work instead. Continuing with the weight example, celebrate each day or week of your eating right and exercising rather than a smaller number on the scales. In the workplace, the key is to identify what is the work element (akin to the exercise) and what is the results element (akin to the scales).
Remember that the path to most big goals is a marathon and not a sprint. So, pace yourself accordingly. Create a schedule that gives you time to achieve your goals. We often start enthusiastically and get disappointed when we don’t maintain that initial pace. Don’t be so hard on yourself. You should even plan on some setbacks. We all have days when we don’t feel like taking on the world. When you feel that way, you are not failing. Treat days when you are not achieving your goals as you planned as a break — not the end. In other words making going off-plan part of your plan. You will feel more positive and be more likely to get back on track.
In addition to planning for setbacks, you should plan for success. Sit down and take some time to seriously visualize both what successful work on your goals and the benefits of achieving them looks like and feels like. Make sure you put your goal in a larger context of what achieving it will mean for your career, your family and your life. Think about the things you are going to do when you achieve your goals. This is a proven technique. Elite athletes will visualize a perfect game or race in their sport including what it would feel like being on the podium. Jim Carey wrote himself a million dollar cheque and put it in his wallet. Dreams alone won’t get you to your goals, but dreams do help. So, dream big.
Finally, make sure to have fun as you work towards your goals. Too many people spend miserable years working towards some ultimate achievement only to be underwhelmed when they finally achieve their objective. The journey is important. It’s a cliché, but make sure you take time to smell the roses along the way. Celebrate your little achievements on your road to your big success. Treat others when you are feeling proud and let them know about it. You can even leave a note here and let us know how good you are doing. When you make a point of enjoying the process, you are much more likely to see it through.