I just noticed that I had labelled both the two previous posts “Part 4” instead of 4 and 5. My apologies, So much for my proof reading!
In the series of 5 previous posts, 12 major differences between the two types of goals have emerged.
- Cost of failure
- Support network
- Monitoring progress
- Setting Milestones
- Incremental Improvement
- Comfort Zone
- Pain and Stress
How do we now use what we can learn from these differences to improve our goal setting ability and more importantly, the achievement of these goals?
Part of the problem with achieving goals is in the goal setting process. For this exercise, let’s assume that the goal setting process has been done carefully along the SMART system:
- Time limit
As long as it is OUR goal and not one that is thrust upon us by family, friends peers or even competitors, the goal itself is not the real problem. As we have seen, in sports, athletics and other endeavours, people just like us, DO achieve goals that seem impossible to others.
There are a few core values that will determine if we will achieve our goals, perseverance, resilience, determination, persistence are all essential but on their own do not guarantee that we will succeed.
In my own experience, in observing many others and reading about great goal achievers, the secret sauce that makes the difference between achieving or failing to achieve our goals is our commitment.
Commitment to do whatever is necessary, take all the steps, find the resolve, persevere, use our last ounces of resilience, perhaps face ridicule, criticism, and financial hardship. Just keep on moving forward until we get there.
So how do we find and feed our commitment so that it does not fade away at the first obstacle we come across? How do we maintain the burning passion we had at the start of our journey? How do we keep that vision of us having achieved our goal in front of us like a huge HD Television screen?
Here are 12 lessons we can learn from the comparison with sports goals.
- Set very simple, clearly stated goals that are in line with our purpose and vision.
- Set aside time each day to work on only those things that are goal oriented. Allocate time in our schedules to deal with distractions in their own time slots.
- Minimise the financial consequences of failing, and then refuse to let them affect our commitment.
- Do whatever works for us to keep our desire white-hot. Vision boards, motivational reading, taking our dream car for a test drive or watching videos of exotic vacation destinations.
- Arranging our schedule and changing work habits to allow 100% focus on goal oriented activities for enough time to make some progress each day.
- Create a support group. If family and friends are not supportive, find a group of peers that will be, find a mentor or start a mastermind group.
- Set up a system to record and monitor progress. Some goals are easier to monitor than others, but even small successes can be recorded. A system I use is to write down 10 successes for the previous day in my journal each morning.
- Review this monitoring and recording system to provide daily or even hourly feedback.
- Be creative about setting mini goals or milestones so that we can track our progress.
- Schedule time for non goal oriented activities, time for family, friends, relaxation, exercise then forget about the goals for these times.
- Learn to compartmentalise, accept that our journey to achieve our goals will at times make us nervous, excited, afraid or uncomfortable. We must not let these emotions rule every waking hour of our day. We must learn to switch them off when we are in non goal achieving activities.
- We need to have a plan to deal with stress so that the stress created from pursuing our business goals does not transfer to the rest of our lives.
A good reference to commitment is this short piece by the Scottish mountaineer W. H. Murray when he wrote the account of the Scottish Himalaya Expedition in 1951.
Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness concerning all acts of initiative and creation. There is one elementary truth, the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans; that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then providence moves too.
All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision raising in one’s favor all manner of unforeseen events, meetings and material assistance which no one could have dreamed would have come their way. I have learned a deep respect for one of Goethe’s couplets:
“Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it. Begin it now!”
What do you think? Is commitment the key to using our ability to achieve sports or athletic goals to help us achieve our business and life goals?
Leave a comment or email me with your thoughts.
Wishing you success in all your endeavours.
p.s. If you are still having difficulty in setting goals, check this out