Success One Step At A Time
The less vague your goals are, the more you can naturally remove intense pressure of trying to achieve great things each day. For example, if your goal is to “lose 10 pounds” you could re-frame that goal to be something like, “shut down the kitchen after 10 pm.” No matter what your goals are, there are specific steps you can take to help those goals become a reality. Every year, one of my goals is to be able to balance on my hands for a longer period of time. It’s been on my list for 20 years… and it’s still a work in progress, even though I’m now practicing balancing on one hand. In trying to become more comfortable upside down, I’ve realized that taking small, baby steps has been the key to getting me closer to my goal.
That’s why the first step to making a smart goal is to de-chunk into small doable steps. Ironically, I came upon the process of “one step at a time” when I was running my first marathon in Hawaii. At mile 18, I looked up and saw that monster, Diamond Head, facing me, taunting me. No way was I going to be able to get to its top and over to the other side! I wanted to quit. Every fiber of my body and soul felt whipped.
Luckily, though, a friend was running with me. “Just put one foot in front of the other,” she said. “Forget about the finish line. Just one foot in front of the other. One step at a time.”
I never forgot that lesson. Since then, I’ve crafted a simple 3-step process to propel you toward the finish line and help you reach your goals!
Don’t forget to celebrate your successes, even the small ones, along the way. When you give yourself a high-five, your brains get a dose of energy and you get re-energized to achieve greater success.
Step 1: Break It Down
Anything can be broken down to small action steps that can be completed one little step at a time. In every aspect of life, no matter what your goal, remember that you can take small, doable steps. That’s the way you learn a new language, write a book, lose weight, or change your life–step by step. If you find that you’re not taking them, then either the steps weren’t really doable, or you need to go back and check your motivation.
The more specific your action steps are, and the finer you can break them down into doable increments, and the more successful you’re going to be.
And, make goals that are realistic! If your goals are realistic, you won’t find it hard to get back on track, even through setbacks. Realistic goals are those that you work towards in small, doable steps. These are goals that can be achieved by improving your current habits.
Chunk your goals into smaller, actionable items and then prioritize which actions you’ll take next. The more you do this, the more you can naturally remove intense pressure of trying to achieve great things each day. For example, if you goal is to “lose 10 pounds” you could re-frame that goal to be something like, “shut down the kitchen after 10 pm.”
Step 2: Practice Patience
Just remember, everything you want to accomplish takes time, especially when the goal is a profound one. After all, if it didn’t take time and patience, if it could be done at the snap of a finger, then it wouldn’t be as worth it. Achieving good health and an optimum weight is not a concrete goal that can be reached as easily as multiplying two times two, because factors change constantly in life. The process is ongoing…it never ends. As you keep going, fine-tune and adjust for circumstances.
Of course, this shift in thinking takes time and patience. Having patience with ourselves make the whole process so much more fun. We aren’t fixated on having something happen immediately. We let it unfold naturally, one step at a time, until eventually we have developed a new habit.
Step 3: Believe You Can Do It!
You can do it! You have the power! Don’t lose faith, even when you feel you have none to lose.
It’s important to state what you want, and what you’re trying to achieve…be very specific.
Then, keep reinforcing your goal by voicing it out loud and writing it down. This is one of the most important things you can do to make your goals a reality. One study showed that you’re 42% more likely to achieve your goals if you write them on paper.
Don’t get overwhelmed or discouraged. Remember, habits aren’t formed overnight! Just take it one step at a time.