This well known quote by Vince Lombardi really goes to the heart of what makes the difference between those who accomplish their goals and those who do not. I know how true this is in my life as well as the lives of my clients as I encourage them to hold the vision of their dreams.
As we approach the end of the year, I am struck by how many options there are that are designed to help keep us on track with our goals. And because I am a bit of a goal setting junky, I was drawn like a moth to each one I read about as I was researching this post!
However, no matter what system you choose, it all boils down to actually using the system! Research and personal experience have demonstrated the incredible benefits of taking the time to step away from your work and day- to- day routine to focus on long- terms goals and plans. Yet so few of us do it.
Over the past few years I have come to see the value of goal setting more and more, for my own life and success as well as for that of my clients. What we think about we bring about! So, we need to pay attention to what we think about. Those who know me know that I focus a lot on the importance of paying attention to our thoughts.
To put it simply, when we approach life and situations with positive energy and expectations, we have more access to solutions, creativity and joy. When we feel negativity, we shut the door to those solutions and become blinded by the darkness. This makes it more difficult to accomplish our goals and overcome difficulties.
Being in a positive frame of mind is also the best way to approach goal setting and planning our future. To quote Les Brown,”Your goals are the road maps that guide you and show you what is possible for your life.”
I have a 5-step plan for accomplishing our goals. Keep in mind that while I say steps, they often happen simultaneously. I’ll go into each below. The 5 are:
Have a goal.
Many people fail to take this important step so they live by default, not by design Life “happens” to them, often in less than optimal ways. Setting goals is a critical step on the path to greater success.
Have a plan.
The plans will often change, but you need to put some methods in place for getting where you want to go. Many of us have great ideas in the shower. It’s taking those ideas to implementation that separates the doers from the dreamers.
This is so critical. The journey is as important as the goal itself. Who you are being as you go after your goals will determine whether you travel the path with joy or with trepidation. Faith will comfort you in the middle of the night like nothing else.
You will come across trials and tribulations. This is a given. There will also be joys and victories. Having someone there to cheer you on and cheer with you will make a significant difference in the speed and pleasure with which you move.
Few goals are accomplished by giving up! The story of Three Feet from Gold featured in Napoleon Hill’s Think and Grow Rich is the most notable example of how many of us stop just short of success. The Colorado gold diggers, discouraged over time, gave up and sold their property. The next owners found the gold just three feet away from where they stopped digging. Hang in there!
Now that you have a 5-step plan to help set you up to accomplish your goals, I’m sharing some of the resources I’ve found to be the best. They are
I have to confess that while we set company goals every year, I didn’t focus on my own goals until I studied to become a John Maxwell Certified Leadership Coach and read John’s books. He is very disciplined about it, as is evident in both his books and his personal stories. My favorite book for this is “The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth“which starts with The Law of Intentionality. He is a proponent of taking the time to reflect and think about our lives with more perspective, looking at situations from all angles; not just from our immediate inclinations. We are so busy running from task to task, diversion to diversion, that we neglect the important element of just thinking things through. Focusing on journalling and reflection has had a tremendous impact on my life and has helped me accomplish many more goals.
The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey is a classic that helped me a lot.
I’ve both been in and conducted masterminds on Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill. It’s a life changer.
There are many methods out there. I found some sites that had good lists of the options.
It starts with simply understanding that a goal not written down is a dream. Make the commitment to find the time and write down your goals!
There are so many systems for working on plans. Starting with SMART goals is one way. Make sure your plans are
- Specific and Significant
- Measurable and Motivating
- Attainable and Achievable
- Relevant and Reasonable
- Time Sensitive and Timely
Then we have planners – all kinds of planners. I am using the 12 Week Year method with The Phoenix Journal, which I like quite a bit. I also have a separate notebook with general and meeting notes so that I don’t junk up all the pages in the back of the Phoenix.
I could study planners for hours. Instead, I looked over a few sites that did the reviews instead. So if you are looking for a new planner, try these sites for a quick survey. They have most of the well-known options.
No matter what method, it’s important to start with a plan, even if it’s written on a piece of paper!
For this, you need to think about who would be a good support person, people or team for you? What do you want out of your support team? I have several people that I use. One person I meet with several times a week to do an in-depth book review of books that tie directly into our beliefs and goals. Currently that book is A Happy Pocketful of Money by David Cameron Gikandi. Another wonderful support person shares my lovely office at Office Evolution in Horsham where we trade ideas and encouragement. I have my own business coach. Of course, I have close friends and family. I am grateful for all of them.
Who can you turn to? Take some time to think about what you want and who could supply it and then ask for help!
There are no simple tools for this. I find and hold my faith by a variety of methods. Books and YouTube videos by Esther Hicks, Wayne Dyer, Deepak Chopra to name a few. I do go to church and sing in the choir. (Chorus only – I don’t do solos!) I meditate. I use the app Insight Timer, which has thousands of free meditations.
Faith is one of the best backbones for holding you up when life gets hard. “Faith is to believe what you do not see; the reward of this faith is to see what you believe.” Saint Augustine
And because I can’t say it any better – read more inspiring quotes at https://www.brainyquote.com/topics/faith-quotes
Finally, stay in the game! Many obstacles and challenges will inevitably come your way. “Winners never quit and quitters never win”, so perfectly put by the great Vince Lombardi. “You are sure to fail if you give up.” When you hit those walls, revisit the goals, rewrite the plans, call for support and keep the faith.
We are capable of so much more than we think we are! I keep finding new and higher goals to go for and it makes life fun, exciting and, yes, challenging. I just keep circling back and staying focused.
I’m always here to help you accomplish your goals with plans, faith and support so you too feel the satisfaction of persistence and achievement!For more information, read my bio here.
PS – Because I love leading Masterminds, I am debating starting one on either Think and Grow Rich or on John Maxwell’s Developing the Leader Within You 2.0. Call or email me if either of those interest you!