“How do I achieve my impossible and unrealistic goals?”
I was asked this question on Quora this week and it resonated with me. From time to time, the ambitious amongst us, all get that sinking feeling that our goals are out of reach.
If this is the 1000lb Gorilla that you’re finding hard to shake off, there are two key things that can help you to stay the course…
The first I addressed in a recent article – How to Stay on Track When You’re Nearly Dead. Essentially – take a break when you need one. Be patient, and realise that great things take time. Never be hard on yourself for doing things your own way, at your own pace.
The other is:
Bring the target closer
When Richard Branson founded Virgin Atlantic, he made a single call to Boeing about leasing an aircraft. That was just a single task, and once complete the business was all but off the ground (pun intended!).
Dissect long term dreams into medium and short term objectives.
Review, adapt, and improve your short term tactics, often.
Create a plan that is liquid and realistic. Nothing happens overnight and plans need to adapt as progress is made, deviations will be required.
My weekly tasks have changed massively over the last year alone…
I only started writing on Quora a month or two ago and it’s already a major referrer of traffic to this site. It’s important to try everything and then double down on what works for you. Practice and refine, rather than theorising.
It can be hard work, but that’s what it takes…
I write all these articles for free and I write on Medium.com and Quora for free. I produce content across social media and I’m constantly trying to grow my audience. I write guest posts for free, and I answer emails from people asking me for advice without asking for anything back.
These are all short term plays that map to my long term ambitions.
Take a step back to reflect and re-evaluate, often.
Consistently performing at a high level day to day without any noticeable progress can be extremely hard, which is why I’m such a big advocate of taking regular breaks to relax and reflect. Celebrate small successes along the way because changing your life isn’t easy.
It’s a long and lonely road. And if your business is anything like mine, good luck seeking solace from your friends and family. They probably won’t understand what you are doing, or why, and if they do ‘get it’ they will probably hate you for having the courage that they lack to improve your ONE life.
You have to be OK with trudging the lonely road.
You have to develop the character and a strong mentality to get your praise, comfort and validation from within.
Don’t use making plans as an excuse to procrastinate though, EVER.
Bring your targets closer by creating manageable stepping stones, but then get on with it.
You can’t refine and progress your plans if you’re not actually in the game.