Reason 1 – Your goal’s not clear
“I want more money” is a goal I hear over and over again. It’s a good place to start. A goal that ups your energy (that’s all money is) is a great motivator for achieving more.
I ask clients, friends and even strangers sometimes how much money and why and I rarely get an answer the first time. We worry about being seen to be greedy, selfish or arrogant. We don’t want to be specific because that makes it scary.
“I want to do something I love for work.” This is totally achievable. What do you LOVE to do and how would you LOVE to give your special gifts and talents to the world? Asking yourself the question, leaving it to percolate in your mind, asking yourself again, taking action and trying it out in a small way can help this clarification process. (Plus you can always change your goals as you go along. It’s a strong person who changes their mind, not a weak one).
TURN AROUND: Detail exactly what you want and get specific: how much, what kind of creative work, how big a garden, what kind of shoes, how many clients?
Reason 2 – Your goal is what you think you SHOULD do
We carry around this ‘parent-friendly’ (read ‘people-pleasing’) goal so we have an easy answer for the questions that they might throw at us. We feel as though we should get a ‘proper job’, not mess around with ideas about working for ourselves or starting a business, particularly if this isn’t the background we came from.
Ask yourself what you want to do. I mean YOU WANT, pretending for the moment that you don’t have any money worries or need parental approval.
If we grew up in circles where everyone is a teacher or a doctor, venturing into a career like watercolour artist or event organiser can be scary to declare. If we grew up in circles where intuitive healer and wellness coach are the norm, accountancy and tax graduate schemes can be equally alien to our friends and family.
TURN AROUND: What if those people’s opinions didn’t count? What would you do then?
Reason 3 – Your goal isn’t exciting
We create goals because we want to FEEL a certain way. Successful, loved, passionate, creative, fulfilled.
But then we phrase them as if they were a to do list, not a way of life. Our goal is “Lose 2 stone”, but we actually want to feel healthy, energetic and motivated.
Using the feelings as the goal can bypass the ‘Ugh I have to go the gym’ stress that most of us have faced at some point. The possibilities start to open up. If you’re goal is to feel healthy, energetic and motivated, you could start by going to a talk by a motivational speaker to inspire you and help you meet people who want to do the same thing. It could mean going for a walk in the sunshine. It could be a green smoothie or going to bed earlier. There isn’t a gym in sight and our overall wellness having improved, we might even find it easier to say no to the larger portion and find the weight drops off more easily.
TURN AROUND: Create a goal based on the feeling you want from achieving the goal, to expand your possibilities and focus on creating a lifestyle rather than a to do list.
Reason 4 – You can’t picture your goal
Creating a lovely picture in your head of you living your life will make a HUGE difference to whether you achieve it.
When I have a goal, if I can picture myself doing it and BEING there, it is FAR more likely to happen. Why? Because I get excited. It’s as if it is already happening and the law of attraction is put into play. While I was still in my London job, I created several pictures of me living my ‘dream’ life. I imagined a beautiful place in Italy with an amazing view, cycling through cobbled streets to get to the market and chatting in Italian there. And yes, this is my life now! No, it’s not the exact house or the exact market stall holder, but do you see me complaining? Of course not! I’ve achieved my goal and it suits me perfectly! Next, I can tweak it or create a new one.
You just need to start ONE picture to work with really. I call this a ‘snapshot of success’. The type of lifestyle, work and adventure you want for your one precious life.
TURNAROUND: Can you describe your snapshot of success as if you’d just posted it on Instagram?
Reason 5 – You haven’t worked out what you need to do get there
AKA a plan. If it’s just a picture, it’s just a dream. It needs some kind of forward motion. When people say ‘any action is better than nothing’, it’s because once you’ve done something, you can see what effect it had, adjust and do it again, something different or even see that you’re ready to take the next step.
You would LAUGH if you saw my first ebook. It was a word document, written with Baskerville old font, no pictures, just black and white. I got a friend to proof-read it and sent it to a few people. I don’t think it has earned me even £1 directly. But it meant doing the NEXT ebook was a whole lot less faff, less procrastination and less stress. The third one I knocked out in a few days. The first step, book, podcast, conversation, clearout and payment is always the most difficult. But once it’s done, it WILL get easier.
How do you create a plan? Start from your picture and work backwards.
TURNAROUND: Check out my video on how to create your plan from a snapshot of success here: http://www.clairemeredith.co.uk/blog/2015/11/7/how-to-create-a-plan-to-achieve-your-goals
Your goals ARE brilliant, whatever they are. We want to see you achieve them! How has this article challenged your thinking around your goals? Let’s hear it!