Goals: How to Stick With Them

Goals. Some goals are long-term some goals or short-term; some goals are goals that we're not even sure why they might be goals. But the fact of the matter is that goals present themselves everywhere, regardless of your industry or lifestyle, you are usually working toward something. So, how can we more effectively work toward our goals?

If you spend any time around me, you might know that I am a hugely goal-oriented person; I partly blame it on my type-A personality and being a Virgo. You might even say that my goals have goals, and then from my goals, I have a list of action items to complete that will help me work toward my set goals. In short, I get shit done. #gsd 

Goals can be great for helping us focus our energy while working toward something important to us. But some lofty goals can also lead us down astray. It is extraordinarily easy to get lost on your journey while working towards a goal. I called this the "shiny object syndrome." It's easy to be pulled into procrastination when chipping away at our goals, to go down a rabbit hole or a tangent, or even to lose sight of your goals. What I would love to share with you is how I breakdown my goals and what I used to maintain focus. Some of these practices might seem basic or intuitive, but there is incredible power in keeping things simple and straightforward.

Write down your goals

I mean this one, physically write down your goals on a piece of paper. Then place this piece of paper in a prominent location, somewhere you can see every.single.day. Keeping our goals top of mind allows us to make small choices and tiny steps every day that will lead us closer to accomplishing them. Beyond writing down your goals, spend a little time envisioning what your life will be like once you’ve accomplished you goal(s) and be precise about the details. Knowing what it looks and feels like to live your goal accomplished life will keep you on your disciplined path toward success.

Create a timeline working backward from your goal

This aspect can be a little tricky if you don't know precisely when you want your goal to come to fruition. But, if you are working toward something that will take six months or year, maybe even two years or five years, start with your end date in mind then create a working timeline, backing yourself into the present day. Though your goal might be long-term, you will know exactly what you should be doing today and now. When it comes to shorter-term goals, you can do the same thing. For example, if you have something that is coming up in six weeks, you can still create a timeline, working yourself back to the present day. When you are able to see a concrete timeline, outlining the action items and key dates for accomplishing your goals, they become more tangible and accessible. I find that it makes my goals feel more real and pressing; therefore, putting in the energy today will feel like I am accomplishing something.

Do one thing every day that will get you closer

I am a firm believer that once a goal has been set; you need to do something every single day that will get you closer to accomplishment. Let's consider the example of wanting to run a 5K. You're not going to go out on day one and run all three miles. Instead, you might detail a training schedule relative to the date set for your 5K, let's say your race is eight weeks out. Over your eight weeks, you will slowly and incrementally increase the distance or time that you run. Assuming you have stuck to your outlined training plan, you will have built up the appropriate endurance in your body and will be fully prepared for your race. You will not be burnt out, rather you will feel prepared, energized, and healthy, you can avoid injuries. Alternately, if you decide that you are going to run a 5K in three days time and you have done absolutely no training, then you probably aren't going to feel good during or after your race. Obviously, this is an overly simplified example, but hopefully, you get the idea.

Doing one thing every single day that will move you closer toward your goal will ultimately have a significant impact on your success. Something that I am currently working toward is saving for the purchase of my first house. My husband and I are working with an extended timeline. We aim to purchase our home at the end of 2020. While that might seem like it might be a distant goal, we are actively taking small steps toward this goal even now.

  • We have identified what a comfortable price range for our family is.

  • We have also decided where we want to buy or first house (no easy task!).

  • To keep this large goal top of mind, we hung a map of the city where we want to move in our living room.

  • Once a month, we sit down and look at our finances; reviewing our savings progress, financial investments, and large expenditures. Then we ask ourselves if we are doing everything we can to inch closer toward owning our first home.

Some days this goal feels overwhelming, yet other days it feels so tangible and close. Having a daily visual reminder also helps curb distractions and frivolous spending. Instant gratification isn't worth it because we can imagine the feeling of walking into our own home.

Ultimately, working towards our goals requires discipline. Knowing your purpose for your goal goes a long way. Understanding what is fueling your desires will help you to stay on the path towards achieving your goals. Perhaps most importantly, envisioning how you will feel once you have accomplished your goal will help you stay the course.

What is something that you are working toward? Do you have a clear path of success outlined? Can I help you?

Crushing goals daily,

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