All good intent comes to naught, when one does not put the intent into practice or begin acting on the plans. We have lofty goals in mind, sit back and plan, decide on a day, date and time to act but when crunch time comes, we have numerous excuses for delaying beginning it. In fact the real problem begins at the goal setting stage. We rarely commit ourselves to outlining the goals in writing. On the rare times we do write down some goals, they are more or less one line statements which are more in the nature of expressing a dream / desire than a commitment. Often the statements are peppered with adjectives that make the goal sound lofty whilst the core remains hollow. One technique to ensure one writes down actionable goals is the SMART goal technique. If you are not aware of this technique or are only have a hazy idea of it, you can google it and read up on the same. (This would be the first test of how committed you are to writing down actionable goals.)
The next step is critical because we do not spend adequate time planning out and chalking out the blueprint of how to go about achieving each goal. This is not a short ten minute exercise. It is actually a test of your passion for the goal you have set. You would need to mull over your goal, the challenges you will face, reflect on your personal limitations that you would need to set right, identify milestones that will indicate that you are on the right track and that you are keeping up to the schedule planned. In planning out your blueprint, you will also make sure you will not compromise on your ethics and values in pursuit of the goal.
Finally it is crunch time, when you have to walk the talk. You will need to begin as planned; no excuse will be good enough for any deferment. If you defer, you will have to go back to the drawing board and rethink your plans for you have not made provisions for contingencies. Your entire SMART goal hinges on the last alphabet T which stands for TIME. Your goal is time bound and this can be achieved only if you begin on time and progress as per your time schedule. Beginning on time is just a blip in the scheme of things; it is sticking to the time schedule till you attain your goal that is the real elephant that you have to eat slice by slice to ensure you have eaten it all. Each day therefore becomes day one of the next step of your plan.
To get your plans off the ground ask yourself ‘When am I going to begin? If the answer is ‘I will start one day ‘ be sure that day will not be in the foreseeable future. On the other hand if you say ‘Day one is here, let me begin now’ you would have created the momentum that you can maintain with the right motivation, an eye on the goal and feet on the ground running. It is your choice to ask and answer the question ‘Is it today that I begin to realize my dreams?
- When are you going to write the letter to the editor of a newspaper, putting forth your views on a social problem that you are most upset about?
- What and when will be your next attempt at doing something that you have never attempted before?
- When will you start making new friends at work/ the neighborhood / when travelling?
- When will you write a letter to or visit a favorite teacher to convey your appreciation?
This post is courtesy www.actspot.com
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