Self-motivation: How to achieve your goals
Many people out there have goals, objectives and dreams that they wish to achieve. The problem is, you need some self-motivation to reach them. You need an idea, a path to get there and a source of motivation to fuel your actions.
So how to tackle this? Well, I’ve thought about this, and I’m going to describe what I do to tackle the goals I set myself.
Step 1: Brainstorm
Think about what you want. What is it exactly that you wish to achieve? Write this goal down. Store it somewhere that you will see it every day, so that you can be reminded what your goal is and don’t lose sight of it. It will make you think of it every time you see it and hopefully it will become something you subconsciously think about 24/7.
Then think about the why. Why do you want to achieve this? What is the outcome when you achieve your goal? How will it change your current situation?
Once you know what your goals are and why you want to do them, you need to consider your abilities. What skills and talents do you currently possess that can help you achieve these goals? Are these skills used every day or do you need to sit down and concentrate on them for a while? Are these skills enough to complete the goals, or do you need to learn some new skills? If you need to learn new skills, where can you go to learn them? Who do you already know that could help you?
Once you have ideas about the things you wish to achieve and that you possess the skills to achieve them, it’s time to move onto step 2.
Step 2: Create the goals
Sit down and clearly define what your goals or objectives are. Make them specific, but not too specific. Does the goal have a particular deadline (e.g. learn to waltz for your wedding) or do you have time to achieve the goal? Be firm but allow some flexibility.
Ensure that in setting out the goal; take into consideration your lifestyle. When you be able to work on your goals? Everyone is busy and there are times when you won’t be able to work on your goals due to other pressing issues. Don’t scold yourself if this happens, as you will lose motivation and become discouraged.
When setting out the goal, you will obviously need to spend time working towards the goal. In this case, time that you spent doing whatever else will be diminished. Work out what you are willing to compromise on – what activity will you reduce or stop to allow yourself to work on your goal in both the short term and long term?
Once you have defined your goal and know when and how you will achieve your goals, you need to think about how you will monitor your progress. How will you know you are on track towards reaching your goal? Creating milestones and setting a desired date help to create a roadmap of how long it will take you to achieve those goals. Be careful, being too strict or too lenient both have their drawbacks. As stated before, take into consideration your lifestyle.
Once you have thought these through, it’s time to begin!
Step 3: Begin
Before you do anything, record your current standing in terms of the goal. This will give you a starting point to look back to so that you can help monitor your progress. Then decided how often you will record your results – will it be daily, weekly, monthly? How will you display this information?
Once you have some data, review it temporarily. See how far you’ve come from where you were and how much closer you are to your goal.
Step 4: Battling the green monster called laziness
After you’ve been working on your goals for a little while, you may find yourself lacking motivation. This is the biggest hurdle – once you’ve set up all you need to do is keep going! How can you get around the loss of motivation?
1. Review your desired goal – Go back to your goal and WHY you want to achieve the goal. Rekindle the excitement you had when you set the goal.
2. If the goal is harder than expected, do you need to tackle it differently? Or maybe you need to change or scrap the goal?
3. Take a measured and defined break from the goal, regroup and reacquaint yourself with the goal.
4. Reassess and if you discover what you were trying to achieve has changed, modify the goal to accommodate the desired change.
Hopefully what I have outlined above will help you to set and achieve your goals! Good luck!