It’s around 80 years since Englishman Alec Mace first came up with the concept of goal-setting as a tactic to help people achieve more in life. To this day, all motivational ‘gurus’ would agree with him. Goals should be written down. It’s interesting that only 8% of people continue their New Year’s Resolutions past the first 2 weeks of January. It’s also interesting that only 3% of people write down their goals or resolutions on paper. I believe that writing down your goals is imperative to success. It transforms the invisible into the visible; it makes your goals become tangible entities.
The average human thinks about an incredible number of things; studies suggest that we are consumed by up to 1500 thoughts per minute! Writing down your goals will help you become more specific. Amid the vast amount of thinking we do, it’s easy for our goals to get jumbled up or put to the side.
So, if you write down your goals, are you guaranteed to complete them? Well no, but you’re already half-way there. It’s often very easy to tell when you’re doing something right, you feel it in your bones. But often I have found that failure can come out of nowhere, and hit you like a truck.
So, I have put together a list of 6 signs that should indicate that you’re on the verge of failing to achieve your goals:
1) You don’t pay attention.
It’s fine to take some time off, to relax and forget about all of your cares and worries. But if it happens on a regular basis, you’re on a slippery slope. Successful people such as Elon Musk, Richard Branson and Alice Walton will never forget their goals. They are constantly engaged on a daily basis on every level of consciousness with what they need to do in order to achieve their goals.
People like this don’t just write down their goals and refer to them now and again. They’re consumed by them, constantly. They keep their dreams and ambitions in their heads. They give them the attention that they require and demand.
So, review your goals daily. Practice setting them. I have a system where I get pictures that represent certain aspects of goals for that I hope to attain in the future. These include writing a book, becoming an actor, and getting a PhD. I place those end goals on the right. Then, to the left, I write down what I am doing now in order to enable those dreams to come true. For instance, I write this blog in order to improve my writing capabilities, and develop my ideas, so that I am informed enough to write a book in the future. I would recommend you do something like this too to help keep you motivated and focused.
2) Looking for something new.
Do you find yourself constantly looking for something new? This means that you have lost confidence in your goals.
It can be intimidating to look at all your goals and wonder how you are going to get them done. But the reality is that if you keep switching lanes all the time with you goals, you won’t ever get any of them done.
Instead of running away from the fear of achieving certain goals, just go for them. Everything is out there for you that you need to ensure your life is made as easy as possible. Read books, use Google, find mentors, and get stuff done.
3) Things become tasking.
When you find that you hate completing the goals that you have set yourself, you know that something is going wrong. Goals are meant to push people to achieve their best, not stress them out and leave them feeling dejected.
In this instance, you need to revisit your original purpose and consider why you wanted to do any of this in the first place? If you use a version of the goal-setting method which I previously mentioned, it’s very easy to look and see visually why you want to do this, and it always compels you to go on.
4) You lose steam.
This is arguably the most common reason why people fail to achieve their goals. We all know that success takes work, and can be challenging. This is especially true when you feel that you’re getting nowhere; when you pour your heart and soul into something and the outcome feels pretty pathetic.
If you feel like this, you will eventually let go of your goals.
In this instance, you need to find your motivation. Motivation is the most important thing in the world of success; it’s what gets you started. It allows you to push through the realisation that we all come to understand: success takes serious work.
Therefore, you need to find your motivation. I find mine through inspirational videos and books. I would highly recommend this. Listening to the stories of other people’s struggles that have now become successful is one of the best ways to gain motivation. It’s also a brilliant opportunity for you to cut the learning curve and avoid making the same mistakes that other people did.
“It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with problems longer.” – Albert Einstein
5) Feeling overwhelmed.
This is yet another incredibly common reason as to why people fail to achieve their goals. They set themselves huge tasks in the short-term which soon become huge burdens. People generally underestimate what they can do in the long-term, but completely over-estimate what they can achieve in the short-term.
If you feel overwhelmed, you need to make a very simple change. You need to reduce your goals. If you want to start reading lots, and your end goal is to read a book a week, you should be starting you journey by reading 10-20 pages per day, not 100-200. You have to take it one step at a time. It’s important to bear in mind the principle of consistency. Many of us will have heard of this wonderful quote…
“I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times.” Bruce Lee.
Remember, you can’t achieve everything and be the best at everything overnight. You need to understand that life is a much longer game than that. Take it one step at a time; get really good at one thing, and then move on to the next stage.
6) Not taking action.
When you aren’t doing anything about your goals, it’s a clear sign that you’re about to give up on them. Remember, you are what you do, not what you say you will do. People will judge you, and you will judge yourself, by what you do. So start to figuring out how you can take action now.
Your goals are merely plans for you future, and your future self is very much determined by the actions you take today. If you don’t do anything, nothing will come true that you hoped would. So start taking action today, don’t let your goals become fantasies.