I just started reading Eat That Frog by Brain Tracy. In the first chapter, he lays out his formula for both setting and achieving your goals. This is a habit you can use the rest of your life. He claims this can:
double or triple your productivity and income
Ummm, yes please! In Tracy’s words, “the number one reason why people get more work done is because they are absolutely clear about their goals and objectives. A major reason for for procrastination and lack of motivation is vagueness, confusion, and fuzzy-mindedness about what you are trying to do and in what order and for what reason.”
When I think about times I feel so “stressed” and paralyzed, guess what? It’s because I’m not clear on what task I’m focusing on, which task I even should be doing, and why I’m working on that task. My stress comes from tackling too much at one time and without a clear process. Think about time you were stressed. You were most likely doing exactly this.
Here are Tracy’s 7 actionable steps to make your goals happen:
- Decide exactly what you want.
- Write it down.
- Set a deadline and sub-deadlines if necessary.
- Make a list of everything you going to have to do to achieve your goal.
- Organize the list into a plan.
- Take action on your plan immediately.
- Resolve to do something every single day that moves you toward your major goal.
“Clear written goals have a wonderful effect on your thinking. They motivate you and galvanize you into action. They stimulate your creativity, release your energy, and help your overcome procrastination as much as any other factor. Goals are the fuel in the furnace of achievement. The bigger your goals and the clearer they are, the more excited you become about achieving them. The more you think about your goals, the greater becomes your inner drive and your desire to accomplish them.”
“Think about your goals and review them daily. Every morning when you begin, take action on the most important task you can accomplish to achieve your most important goal at the moment.”
Here are a few tips I’ve found to be helpful.
- Have one main goal. If I don’t, I end up becoming stressed. Every single time. Remember, once you achieve your goal, you move onto the next one. Don’t feel like you have to do everything at once. Get one thing done, then move onto the next one.
- Break down your big picture goals into small bite sized, actionable goals. Let yourself dream… but then let the steps to achieve your dream break down into doable monthly, weekly, and daily chunks. This is key!
- Make a list of the steps and then make one of those steps a monthly goal. Then, break down that monthly goal into four weekly goals. Each week, take one of those tasks and figure out how you can move forward with it on a daily basis. Does this look like getting up earlier so you have some quiet, focus time? Do you need to limit or eliminate social media for a day to give yourself some breathing room?
- Go back to your dream often. Remind yourself of why you doing these daily little tasks. What’s the bigger picture? For us, it’s financial freedom for our kids.
- Have mini goals in other areas of your life. I have one major goal. But, I also have mini goals in the arena of my “free” time. This ensures that I’m spending all my time in the manner of the life I want for myself. You get to design your life. For me, this looks like reading my Bible, being active with my kids, making memories together as a family, creating a capsule wardrobe for myself, working out, decorating our house, learning and growing through podcasts and books, cooking seasonal recipes, hospitality and organizing our home.
Where do you want to be a year from now? Seriously, take some time to think about this. Out of debt? With a savings account? 20 pounds lighter? With a blog? A side income? “Choose your major goal and decide which one would have the greatest positive impact on your life. Whatever that goal is, write it on a separate piece of paper, set a deadline, make a plan, take action on your plan, and then do something every single day that moves you toward your goal. This exercise alone could change your life!” Amen, Tracy.
You get to design your life.
*all quotes taken from Eat That Frog