Lately, we’ve been stressing how important it is to set goals, write them down and chase them to success! However, it’s important to make sure you’re taking baby steps. Have you ever taken on a new goal and became burnout shortly thereafter? Unfortunately, you won’t wake up one day to find your dream in the palm of your hands without first working towards that dream in bite-sized pieces.
Here are five simple tips that will help you reach your big goals:
Let’s face it – you can’t climb Mount Everest without climbing smaller mountains first. Compare meeting your goals to becoming a concert pianist. You’ll need to go slow at first and learn the keys. You probably won’t even be able to play a whole song with both hands for a while when you first begin, but that’s okay. If you try to force it, you’re going to frustrate yourself. You have to learn the notes, the timing, the treble clef and the bass clef. It all takes time but will eventually come together. Take your goals a song, or a small portion of a song—at a time.
This is something you can do in five minutes before bed on a Sunday night. You create your own deadlines. It’s simple but very effective. Write down the things you will accomplish before noon on Saturday. Check them off as you go. Treat your deadlines like school assignments – you don’t want to get a bad grade for handing something in late. It’s not the end of the world, of course, but meeting your deadlines is a great way to stay positive.
Never underestimate the importance of keeping track of your own success. Consider investing in a success journal, use the Note app on your iPhone, or use a simple notebook to keep track of your success. Let’s stick with the pianist metaphor. Each time you learn a new song, write it down. Each time you have a small win, let it be your motivation to continue to challenge yourself. After all, you are your biggest competitor.
Celebrate your wins too! Treat yourself to an ice cream cone, take the family out to dinner, or buy a new book. Don’t let your successes go unnoticed or uncelebrated. If you need to, write down your reward – it will provide you with more motivation to complete your action step!
This may sound cheesy, but don’t give up! Think about all of the progress that would be wasted if you stop in the middle. Sure, there will be days when working towards your goals are tough, if not impossible, but get back up and try again tomorrow! Take a day off if you need to. If we resort back to playing the piano, there will be days when you have to put in fewer miles or go slower. Remember, every tiny step counts and doing something is better than doing nothing.
There are dozens and dozens of online communities that are made for people to support each other and bask in the pleasure of working towards certain goals. You can find mobile apps to access from anywhere. There are fitness groups, habit-breaking groups, traveling groups, writing groups, organizing groups, and just about anything you can think of! Joining support communities is a great way to meet and talk with people who are genuinely interested in your story and your progress. Sometimes our peers just aren’t enough.
Don’t bite off more than you can chew! Like they always say, “Rome wasn’t built in a day.” Stay positive and stay focused. Each action step you take brings you closer to your desired goal.
Now go chase that goal!
You might also find these posts about setting goals helpful.