Aware’s 10 Steps to Reaching Your Goals & Dreams
Most people like to set goals for health, work or personal satisfaction. Unfortunately, many aren’t successful because they don’t properly plan or prepare for what they need to do. Did you know that 92% of New Year’s resolutions actually fail by January 15th? (This might be the reason why your local gym is so empty come February.) The fact is, any time is the right time to start a goal, if you approach it the right way. We’ve researched the top sources and put together “Aware’s 10 Steps to Reaching Your Goals and Dreams”. Here’s our list of the proven principles that will help you beat the odds and give you the best chance to achieve success.
- Make a commitment and be intentional.
- Remember to keep a positive attitude.
- Define your Why or your reason for doing it.
- Broadcast your goal.
- Learn from others.
- Create a solid plan for success.
- Buy into the process.
- Plan for what psychologists call Flow.
- Celebrate your success and reward yourself.
- Build on your success to plan your next goal.
TELL ME MORE
- Make a commitment and be intentional. Being committed to the process and being willing to do the right activities consistently is a necessary part of goal setting. If you do something half-way you’re going to get half-way results. On the other hand, if you do something with a full effort then you will get the full results. Time is a valuable commodity and if you are already taking the time to do something than you might as well do it the right way. Make the commitment to yourself that you will accomplish your goal by following the proper steps, putting in a full effort and being consistent.
- Remember to keep a positive attitude. The key is to approach your goal with the mindset that you will reach it rather than that you will try to reach it. In the wise words of Yoda: “Do or do not. There is no try…” Picture yourself achieving your goal and imagine how good it will make you feel. Also, acknowledge that you might hit some setbacks or get discouraged, but don’t beat yourself up if you fall a little short. Keep your attention on the positive things and adjust your schedule to get back on the path to success.
- Define your Why or your reason for doing it. It shouldn’t be about material things or money, and it definitely shouldn’t be because someone else wants you to do it. Dig deep to find the things you value most about accomplishing your goal. Say your goal is to lose weight or get in shape; looking good or fitting into a certain outfit might seem like a good reason but you will be committed even more if you find a deeper reason. Think about having better overall health, living longer and being an inspiration to your family and friends. These are the things that will keep you emotionally attached if there’s ever a time when you feel like giving up.
- Broadcast your goal. One of the best strategies to staying on track is to tell your goal to someone you are close to. Also, give permission to that person to hold you accountable and to be source of inspiration if you need it. You can even announce your goal on social media and have others follow along with you on your journey (Just be prepared for anyone that might be critical of what you are doing and don’t let them discourage you). The second best strategy is to write your goal down. This can increase your success rate by 50%. Those who use neither strategy are more likely to fail.
- Learn from others. There are most likely many people who have already accomplished the same goal as you so look at their success to help you plan your strategy. Seek out family and friends for advice, look at websites or even search for YouTube videos on the subject. Take advantage of the technology that’s out there to make it easier for you.
- Create a solid plan for success. Be specific and map out a detailed plan for how you will attain your goal. Use the acronym SMART to make sure it is Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic & Time-bound. Investing in a daily planner and writing things down is a proven strategy to completing your tasks. Where applicable break it up into smaller goals, those “little yeses” that will keep you excited and motivated to continue. Also, set up deadlines and identify the ways you can measure your progress. This is critical for making sure you stay on track and are doing the right activities to reach your goals. Another way that’s helpful to some is to create a vision board and post it in a place where can see it every day. There’s some controversy as to whether these are effective, but most experts agree that it’s important to visualize both the end result and also the steps it takes to get there. Either way, it requires work. Putting in a little effort up front to develop a solid plan will absolutely give you the best chances to succeed.
- Buy into the process. Before you begin working on your goal, identify any tools you will need to help you along the way. Also, think about the bad habits that will stand in your way how you can replace those with the good habits that will actually help you. Recommit yourself whenever necessary to following the plan you have created and the steps it will take to be successful. It’s important to evaluate your progress as you go and determine if you need to make any slight modifications that will keep you moving forward. Sometimes you may have to adjust your schedule or activities to accommodate the things you need to do. Remind yourself that any setbacks will not derail you in reaching your goal.
- Plan for what psychologists call Flow. This is the state when you are so immersed in a task that time falls away and you experience deep enjoyment in what you are doing. Things become easier and more routine. It’s the time when you feel like “I got this” and have developed the daily habits that will deliver the results you are looking for. There may be times where you will need to dial your activities up or down to keep yourself in a good rhythm. Having flow also keeps you motivated and gives you confidence that you are on your way to truly accomplishing your goals.
- Celebrate your success and reward yourself. When you reach your goals, first take some time to really enjoy how it feels to have success. It’s typical to want to get on the phone or social media and brag about your accomplishments but never let yourself get discouraged if not everyone is as excited as you. After all, some people will be rooting for you to fail because it makes them feel better about themselves for not reaching their own goals. Remember that you did this for you and the joy it brings to know you worked hard for something. The people that truly love you will be the ones who are happy for you. Lastly, always celebrate your success by treating yourself. Go out to dinner, by a new outfit, take a trip or anything that will be a positive reinforcement of your accomplishment.
- Build on your success to plan your next goal. Goal setting can support positive mental health and boost self-esteem. The “I did it!” factor will propel you to want to take on other goals. Take this opportunity and use your momentum to accomplish the next goal or dream that you have. Following these same proven principles, putting in the right work and having a solid and consistent plan, will all contribute to you having success after success in your life.
ONE STEP FURTHER
We want to help you achieve all of your goals, however big or small. Take advantage of some tools and resources that we’ve provided for you. Best of luck!
How To Reach Your Goals – http://www.webmd.com/balance/features/how-to-reach-your-goals
Research into goal setting and strategies – https://positivepsychology.com/goal-setting/
7 Steps to Achieve Your Dream – https://www.success.com/7-steps-to-achieve-your-dream/
Juliette Tocino Smithʼs discussion of accountability in goal setting 11/19/2019 – https://positivepsychology.com/goal-setting-theory/
5 Ways to Set Achievable Goals – https://time.com/4472819/how-to-achieve-goals/
Kendra Cherryʼs August 8, 2019 description of flow – https://www.verywellmind.com/what-is-flow-2794768
16 Action Steps to Take to Achieve Any Goal – https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/318347
How to Set and Achieve Life Goals the Right Way – https://positivepsychology.com/life-worth-living-setting-life-goals/
Advice and steps to take for goal setting by Molly Cain – https://www.forbes.com/sites/glassheel/2013/03/14/6-ways-to-achieve-any-goal
5 Tips For Reaching Your Goals in 2019 – https://www.inc.com/young-entrepreneur-council/5-tips-for-reaching-your-goals-in-2019.html