Note: This post is written by Tom Casano
It’s much easier to set a goal than follow through, correct? So what processes do you need to have in place to make sure those goals you made get reached?
There’s one main reason why you don’t reach your goals and it’s probably because you don’t take them seriously – even if you think you do. Whether you don’t believe in your ability to reach that goal, or you simply fail to put in the work to reach that goal, you aren’t taking it seriously. If you took it seriously, you’d be on your way to achieving it or have it accomplished already.
If you’re a good little goal setter, you’re probably well aware of the fact that the first step towards achieving what you want is to set a goal, good. However, when you set that goal, just like a New Year’s resolution, the motivation will inevitably fade away and you’ll be confronted with unexpected challenges.
These challenges do a great job of testing just how serious you were about accomplishing that goal. Simply wanting it isn’t enough so let’s dig into how you can take the goals you set more seriously and get some amazing things accomplished.
Try them on for size. Visualizing yourself achieving your goals is a great place to start. Find what’s really important to you and see how it looks in the future. It’s highly motivating. This is also a great way to see if your goal is the right fit for you.
Sometimes you may not be able to envision your goal or you’ll picture it and it just doesn’t look right. This will help you adjust and eliminate goals and that aren’t worth your time. The power of visualization is huge. If you can see yourself having achieved your goal, you’re that much more likely to actually take it seriously and accomplish it.
2. Set Specific Goals
One thing you really want from your goal is achievability. It’s awesome to have big goals and it’s okay if they are a bit overwhelming. However, you cannot leave them that way. In order to make your bigger, more ambitious goals achievable you’ll need to make them specific and break them into pieces.
The more detail you can add to your goals, the more real they will seem. This isn’t a dream, it’s a goal. It’s meant to be achieved so make sure it has some grit and authenticity to it or it will be easy to write off and not take seriously.
3. Tell People
This can be easy for some and utterly terrifying for others but it’s a necessary step if you take your goals seriously. Not only will telling other people about your goal give you a sense of accountability, it also takes your goal out of the dream realm and into reality. Hiding inside you, your goal can easily be swept aside and ignored, but when other people are asking you about it or you get the chance to discuss it with others, good pressure is applied and the goal is given more importance in your mind.
It’s easy to keep a goal to yourself because it feels safer in your head. If you’re too embarrassed of potential failure to tell other people your goal, you probably aren’t prepared to achieve it. You’re counting yourself out before you try. Failure and feedback are a huge part of achievement. Know that the risk is worth the reward and by simply telling other people about your goal, it will motivate you more and open doors you could never have imagined were there.
So after your grand revelation and goal setting inspiration, reality will hit hard. What will you do? You need to have a plan to keep yourself on track and heading toward that goal even when the motivation fades and life gets crazy. There’s no escaping the curve balls life loves to throw your way so plan a little chaos into your schedule.
Having a specific date or multiple dates on your calendar will give your goal urgency and validity. Don’t reschedule these dates or plans unless you absolutely have to. Part of taking your goals seriously means you don’t bail on your plan. Block out time, get someone to hold you to it, bribe yourself, do whatever you need to do to keep yourself moving forward on this goal.
Saying you’re committed and actually being committed are two very different things. Committing doesn’t mean that you’re going to follow your plan and achieve your goal exactly how you intended. It doesn’t mean you won’t fall off the wagon or take a bad detour along the way. Commitment means that even when you have missed part of the plan or when something goes wrong you get right back on board and pick up where you left off.
Visualize yourself following through, keep track of all of your accomplishments along the way, talk to people about it, adjust your plan if necessary and just keep going. Too often we commit to things conditionally and once something goes wrong, we count it as a failure or say that it was “not meant to be” and move on. Truly committing means that you expect things to happen and you plan to work through and around whatever comes in your way.
One of the best feelings in the world is being able to commit to something for yourself. Your personal goals may tend to take the backseat to other priorities in your life but it shouldn’t be that way. Putting in the work to take your goals seriously will make it much more possible for you to follow through and make them reality.
Tom Casano is the founder of Life Coach Spotter where you can find your life coach and learn more about life coaching.