According to statistics, only 8% of people actually achieve the goals they’ve set for themselves. For the other 92%, setting goals has become a vicious cycle.
They start with motivation, but as time goes on, that motivation dwindles until it becomes non-existent, leaving them with no choice but to give up on their goals.
The good news is, there are ways that will help you push through this intense process and come out victorious.
The 5 Second Rule
by Mel Robbins
⏱ 15 minutes reading time
🎧 Audio version available
Set Achievable Goals
There isn’t a single person on this planet that doesn’t want to become wealthy and successful. Like the majority of people, if you’re starting from scratch and building your business all by yourself, you have set goals for yourself as you grow your business.
So, people think that the goal will be enough of a motivation to keep them going, so they shoot for the moon when they set their goals. In reality, what they’re doing is setting themselves up for failure because chances are, neither the goal nor the monetary aspect of it is enough of a motivator, so their motivation is going to melt away and they’re left with nothing to push them forward to achieve the goal.
The secret to setting an achievable goal is not about the act of setting the goal– it’s about setting a SMART goal. SMART is an acronym that stands for specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound. Or in other words, it’s what makes goals achievable.
Before you set a goal, ask yourself if you have the capabilities and skillset needed to achieve this goal. If you do, research about people who successfully achieved a similar goal and find out what worked for them and what didn’t. However, if you don’t believe you have the capabilities to achieve it, find out which areas aren’t your strong suit and work on them.
Goals have to be realistic. There’s no doubt that everyone wants to achieve challenging goals. It’s a good thing to challenge yourself; it’ll help you find your limits. But, it’s a different story to challenge yourself to the point where you know you’re setting yourself up to fail. And when that happens, it’s highly likely that it’ll have a negative impact on future goals and your self-confidence, as well as on your motivation to work on a new goal.
Stop Worrying About What You Can’t Control
It’s in human nature to worry about the things you can’t control. In fact, worrying and not being in control are two things that go hand in hand and feed off each other, and they will drive you mad. You want to micromanage every little detail and maintain control over everything to prevent anything disastrous from happening.
The truth of the matter is, you’re wasting your time and energy on something that’s inevitable . No one can predict the future, even if they go to great lengths to try to prevent bad things from happening.
So, instead of wasting your energy on things you can’t control, redirect that energy and focus toward the things you can control. You can’t control whether a person is going to buy your product, but you can control the product itself and constantly work on it to improve it.
If you ever find yourself face to face with a problem, ask yourself whether or not it’s something that you can solve. If you can– great! Find ways to help you solve it. But if it’s a problem that’s out of your control, let it go.
Surround Yourself With Positive People
Unfortunately, it’s easy to lose sight of your goal, no matter how motivated you felt in the beginning. It happens to the best of us. It’s inevitable, and when it strikes, it’s important that you find ways to push yourself back onto the right track.
If you’ve been devastated after not meeting your goals, having someone by your side who can motivate you and help you keep going, especially at times where you don’t feel like it, is invaluable. This person will hold you accountable and be your support system, which will help you grow and improve.
It’s even better if that person is someone who’s similar to you. They will understand what you’re going through and they know how it feels, so they can support you in every way possible. They will help you stay on track, and with their help, you’ll find yourself on the right path to reach your goal.
On the flip side of the coin, if you surround yourself with a toxic person, or as some would call a Negative Nancy, what you’re doing is creating more obstacles for yourself– completely avoidable obstacles. In most cases, toxic people don’t have a dream to look forward to, and they aren’t happy with their lives. And the thing is, they will drag you down with them. They don’t want to see you succeed and will discourage you from doing anything that they know could help you reach that success.
Even if that person is someone who’s very close to your heart and has been in your life as long as you can remember, always keep in mind that some people aren’t meant to be in your future. They’ve done you a favor by showing you their true self, and now it’s your turn to leave them behind before they start affecting you in a negative way.
Break Large Goals Into Subgoals
One of the best ways to describe what it’s like to set a large goal with even larger end results is comparing it to a car that’s running with no fuel. Yes, the end results will be worth it in the end, but you need fuel to reach that end result.
You might be wondering, what exactly is the fuel that will help you get to the end result?
Well, it’s motivation. Or if we’re breaking it down to a more of scientific level, it’s dopamine. In case you didn’t know, dopamine is a neurotransmitter that has been nicknamed the ‘feel good’ neurotransmitter for a very good reason; it’s a part of the brain’s reward system. It’s what makes you feel good when you’re eating chocolate or hugging your best friend.
When it comes to goals, dopamine is what will keep you motivated throughout your journey. So, how exactly can you stimulate the release of dopamine?
It’s by breaking down large goals into subgoals– and let us elaborate on that.
When you have a large, yet achievable, goal that you know will have an end result that will exceed your expectations, there’s a high chance that you might give up halfway through due to the lack of motivation. You won’t feel a sense of fulfillment or satisfaction when you’re working on achieving your goal because you haven’t accomplished it yet.
By breaking down large goals into subgoals, you’re giving yourself opportunities to accomplish smaller goals that will eventually lead to the bigger goal. Success, no matter what size, is what will stimulate the brain into releasing dopamine and hence giving you ‘fuel’ to run on until you achieve the large goal.
What’s even more encouraging about this is, when you start feeling the effect of dopamine, you’ll find yourself eager to repeat the action that caused it. So, you’ll want to do it again to receive the same result. You’ll stay motivated throughout your journey, and before you know it, you’ll reach your goal.
Visualize the Results
It’s important that you take actionable steps that will help you reach your goal, there’s no denying it. But, the act of believing you’re capable of achieving your goals– now that’s what will help them reach it. And part of believing in yourself is visualizing the result because you know you’re going to reach those results someday.
To give you a somewhat clear idea of how visualization can help, we want you to imagine a scenario with us. Imagine if you are standing before thousands of people, waiting for the signal that will announce the start of the race. If you were in that position, would you want your mind to be filled with anxious thoughts and self-doubt, or would you want to be thinking about reaching the finish line in 1st place?
The latter is what 99% of the people will do, and it’s what professional athletes do during competitions. They visualize what they want to happen, and consequently, their chances of succeeding skyrocket– and this, everyone, is the power of visualization. Visualization is directly linked to success, and you’ll find that it’s something that most successful people do on a regular basis. It’s a simple yet effective technique to help you believe that you can– and will— achieve your goal, increase your confidence level, and cultivate a positive mindset.
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