Many people think that goal setting is the true secret to success in any area of life. Although setting a goal may seem simple, achieving it is usually another question altogether.
The ability to achieve your goals is the true secret to success!
Why is that? Because you will never achieve your goals unless you: (1) know exactly what you want; (2) are passionate about your goal; and (3) have a solid, realistic plan of action. This is what marks the difference between nebulous dreams and wishes – and truly achievable goals!
Many obstacles and challenges will fly right in your face when you’re going after a goal. Here are 5 time-tested methods that will help get the success you deserve.
1. Know exactly what your goal is: Your first job is to discover exactly what your goal is. What will achieving that goal really look like? Be as specific as possible about exactly what your desired end result is. Your success will be a measure of your clarity – since an achievable goal plan cannot be created around a nebulous "dream."
If your goal is to create a more successful business, what will that look like? Are you thinking in terms of simply hiring someone else to give you more free time? Are you looking for a very specific monthly profit? Or can your goal be best expressed in terms of a certain lifestyle? Regardless of what you want, the best way to get it is to first clarify exactly what you want in as much detail as possible. This can be hard work. But without a clear mental picture, you’ll never have the focus required to achieve your goal.
2. Be willing to pay the "entry fee": Success takes dedicated planning and effort. In a way it’s like building a house. In the beginning all you have is a rough concept. Then you develop a complete set of plans – and you immediately move closer to success. The same is true of creating a better lifestyle, or a more successful business. But there’s always an "entry fee" to be paid for success. The entry fee? Creating more success in your business may mean less recreational time. Writing your own book may require less TV. Being closer to your children may require adjusting your work or social activities. It’s the "full glass" deal. If your life (your time) is already full to the top, there’s no room for something new. The entry fee is carving out the time to create that something new.
3. Focus on your goal every day: I’m sure you probably want to achieve your goal as fast as possible. That’s why clear mental focus is so very important. Consistent daily focus is absolutely necessary to "burn in" the new neural pathways you need to create your new goal. Without daily focus, the old mental habits that have kept you from your goal will continue to take over. This happens automatically – since these old habits replay 24/7 deep in your subconscious mind. The only way to override subconscious anti-success messages is to consciously focus on what you DO want – and build new neural networks! That’s why success is an every-day event. Re-commit to your goal every day. Don’t let your goal take a back seat to the daily tasks and distractions that will try to take over. Life WILL try to get in your way. Just get, and stay, on course every day. Focus on your goal, and on success!
4. Get passionate: One of the most powerful tools in your "success tool box" is having real passion for your goal. Why passion? Because intense passionate desire for your goal will help you burn in those new neural pathways even faster. Many scientific studies have shown that intense emotion (passion) is a key success tool. Plus (and this is really a "big" plus) intense passion will also help you rapidly override any inappropriate old "failure messages" stored in your subconscious mind.
5. Take consistent action: In many ways, actually taking action can be the most difficult step. Successful goal achievement is built by taking one small action after another. The word is ACTION! If you commit to take at least one small action each day, your actions WILL add up and make a difference. So avoid sitting back waiting for that big second when everything will magically "just happen." You CAN create whatever you want in life. The secret is to determine exactly what you want, then pursue it passionately. But remember — in the end, only action counts! You can’t just dream about it! You have to DO IT!
Next time we’ll provide some questions and "prompts" to help you define your vision and strategy for the year!