Have you ever set your heart on a career or goal and then lost your focus? Distractions and life events you didn’t have control over cropped up as obstacles and you had to put off what you were working on, or maybe you just put it aside hoping someday you might get back to your dream. I have. I remember dreaming of doing things, working hard to set goals and lists, then becoming discouraged because there were too many other things I was responsible for at the time and it seemed my dreams would always get shoved aside.
Here are some things you can do to stay motivated and keep making progress towards your dreams.
- * Focus on the outcome instead of the activities.
It’s easy to fill up a “to do” list with a lot of activities that seem necessary and valuable when we write them down, but are they? If you aren’t careful what seemed like a good idea and vitally important can get confused with “busy work” and before you know it you’ll find yourself with a big to do list that you aren’t getting done, a feeling of despair because you aren’t making the progress you thought you would, and sometimes thoughts of giving up because you become discouraged, or feel overwhelmed with the distractions and events.
When you focus on the outcome instead of the activities – put up reminders of where you want to be. Don’t do a big to do list, instead just focus on what you want for an outcome. You will surprise yourself finding ways to fit in the things that must be done to get you to your goal. What’s more is you may come to realize things you thought were important are just busy work and aren’t necessary to get you where you want to go.
Resources you didn’t see before will come into focus because you aren’t worried about the “to do list” – you’re looking for your end result. When you keep your focus on the outcome it sets your brain and eyes in motion to look for opportunities that you might’ve otherwise missed.
- Set your targets closer
Another way to stay motivated is to set your targets closer. When you want to gain self-confidence it helps to set some easily obtainable goals, once you reach your target – celebrate!! Every success counts! Get used to that feeling of celebration when you reach your goal, stop and enjoy it! Build on your successes and keep the momentum going! You can do it!
It seems silly to remind to celebrate, but how many times do you reach a goal and think, “okay, that’s done, now what?” and just move on to the next thing? I was doing this a lot. Where is the enjoyment? Where’s the lasting sense of accomplishment? Well, gee, I just bypassed it and went on to the next thing. It’s important to celebrate the little successes, it will make the big successes that much more sweet! Life is a joy to live and we need to celebrate when we reach a milestone or goal.
- Surround yourself with people who will hold you accountable and encourage you.
Notice I didn’t say – surround yourself with people who will beat you up and try to whip you into getting things done. This may work for some, and I confess now and then I kick myself into gear, but put me with someone who’s going to belittle or make me feel bad for not reaching a goal on time and it has the opposite effect on me. Eventually I may even start avoiding that person. Who wants to talk to someone whose intent on judging you? I’d rather find someone who will listen to my concerns and offer some encouragement and helpful suggestions.
Just keep that ant philosophy. Ants don’t get distracted or let obstacles get in their way. They just keep on going, up, down, around, under and through whatever gets in their way to reach their goal. When they need help they send for reinforcements and get the job done.
Cherry Coley ©