Get Real, Get Ready, and Get Going!
Tired of your resolutions giving you a smackdown? You can achieve your goals. Follow these six simple steps. Soon you’ll be checking off your accomplishments and creating a life you love.
The secret is in the system.
You’ve got to get real about where you’re starting and where you want to go. Next, you need to prioritize your goals and break them down into doable steps. Finally, don’t let perfectionism stand in your way. Move forward at all costs and learn to welcome the small fails that ultimately will lead you to success.
Leap and the net will appear.John Burroughs
Step 1: Start where you are
Accept your reality
Step 2: Choose Your Target
- Set aside some time to dream and brainstorm. What do you want your life to look like? What makes you happy? What would you like to improve? What is missing?
- Make a list of all the things you’d like to change.
- Circle your top four goals. Forget about the rest.
- Label your goals A, B, C and D in order of importance.
- For each goal, make a list of steps you’ll need to take to achieve it.
This is your map for the year. Now that you know where you’re going, it’s time to create your plan.
Step 3: Small Steps to Big Change
Sprint to success
There’s an old African Proverb, “There is only one way to eat an elephant: a bite at a time.”
Your goal is your elephant, overwhelming when you look at it as a whole, but not when you divide it into small bites.
That’s why you need to create a clear, doable plan. This doesn’t have to be time-consuming or overwhelming. Start with your big picture, then gradually break it down into manageable steps.
You’ve got 12 months to accomplish your goals. That gives you three months to laser focus on each goal, giving it your complete attention. It’s a 90 day sprint to success.
That’s much less daunting than a year-long slog! 90 days is doable. You can stay the course for three months! It’s the perfect amount of time, short enough to keep you focused and long enough to get things done.
Create a plan
Let’s begin with Goal A.
- Review the list of steps you created for Goal A.
- Determine what you can realistically accomplish over the next three months.
- Divide that into monthly tasks.
- Divide each months tasks into weekly steps.
- Schedule your first week’s tasks, setting specific times for accomplishing each step.
I love this method. It keeps you moving forward without overwhelming you. With a clear path in front of me, I feel confident that I can achieve my goals. I even find myself looking forward to charting my progress.
It’s amazing how much more manageable a goal becomes when you break it down into daily steps! These tiny baby steps taken one day at a time will ultimately help you achieve any goal you set your mind to.
Step 4: Leap into Action
You know what you want. You know how you’re going to get it. All that you need to do now is follow your plan. Take the leap. Begin.
This is where you need to channel Larry the Cable Guy and “Get ‘er done”. There is no time for dithering and no time for “I don’t feel like it”. There is only what you want and what you’re going to do today to achieve it.
First thing in the morning, grab a coffee or a tea and pull out your schedule. Take five minutes to think about what steps you need to complete today? Keep moving forward, one step at a time. At the end of each week, review what you’ve accomplished, then create your schedule for the following week.
I like to think of my future as a pristine, snow covered path. Each day I leave a fresh set of prints on that path as I move forward to my objective. I don’t have to take a lot of steps, I don’t even have to cover a lot of ground, but I DO need to keep moving forward. Every day takes me one step closer to my goals.
In just three months, you’ll have made significant strides towards your first goal. Celebrate your accomplishments! Then repeat this process for your next goal, making a plan for the next three months. Before you know it, the year will be coming to a close and you will have achieved not one, but four major goals!
How great will that feel?
Sure, some days will be harder than others. Sometimes life throws us a curve ball and we swing and miss. When that happens, just shrug it off. Adjust your plan and keep going.
If a lack of motivation is the problem, you need to outsmart yourself. Mel Robbin’s Five Second Rule always solves this problem for me.
When you feel yourself hesitate before doing something that you know you should do, count 5-4-3-2-1-GO and move towards action…Mel Robbins
Robbins’ method is simple but effective. I use it all the time:
- The alarm goes off, I hear myself think, “Do I really have to get up this early?” and I cut it off with 5-4-3-2-1-GO! and roll out of bed.
- I plan to work on a project, but a favorite movie pops up on the TV. 5-4-3-2-1-GO! and I’m back in my productive groove.
- I need some fresh air and exercise, but it’s cold outside and I really don’t want to go out. Shut it down with 5-4-3-2-1-GO!
If you eliminate the pause between impulse and action, you’ll find you can accomplish so much more than you ever have before.
Trust your instincts and act. Don’t hesitate. Don’t second-guess yourself. Just keep moving forward to achieve your goals.
Step 5: Embrace Good Enough
Progress over perfection
- Do my readers care if I used the right adjective in the third paragraph? Nope.
- Did the 25th edit make a big difference the quality of my writing? Uh-uh.
- Are any of you waiting to pelt me with catcalls and criticism if this post isn’t perfect? Unlikely.
Put it in Drive
Fail early, fail often, but always fail forward.John C. Maxwell
Step 6: Fail Forward
There are no fails, only learning
Learn as you Go
I have not failed 10,000 times. I have not failed once. I have succeeded in proving that those 10,000 ways will not work.Thomas Edison
Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it; Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it.Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
I’m done with waiting, done with wishing, and done with pussy-footing around my dreams. I’ve got a wild, sweet urge to live singing in my veins. I can’t stand another minute walking the same well-trod path.
There are new horizons to explore, new challenges to embrace, new people to meet, and new lessons to learn. I’m dreaming big and I’m moving forward into a better life.
How about you? What will your future hold? Are you ready for your next adventure?
You have endless potential. You can achieve any goals you set your sights on.