Have you ever had a goal, put your all into achieving it yet in the end- you still missed the mark?
I’m sure all of us have been there which brought another discouraging moment in our lives. It probably made us feel so discouraged that you would say “forget it” and out the window the rest of your goals go! Yep, that has been me 10 times over until I learned the importance of achieving smaller goals first; then I went to work at achieving my BIG goal!
Just in Case I Want to Move Up…
My (little, not so little) brother told us up an down he wasn’t going back to school after undergraduate. He was fine with his first degree and had no intention of going back. He was also in love with his current teaching position and at the time, wasn’t thinking about moving up in his career. Fast forward… the years go by. Although he is still happy teaching, he starts to think “anything can happen” so he began talking to folks about next steps in keeping his tenure secure. His mentor [and a few family members] told him it would be best to finish his Master’s. This way, if he became interested in a higher position, he would have the credentials which will loosen his competition.
Going Back to School… Yeah Right!
Really, going to back to school as a full time employee, husband and father… how would he make that happen? I know this story probably hits home to many of you. How can I achieve this large goal ahead of me when I have so many obstacles hanging over my head currently??? “God will not place too much on you that you can’t bear.” That’s first and then second… you learn to pace yourself to achieve smaller goals first. Keep reading… I’ll explain how soon.
Being over 160 pounds on a 5 foot Queen wasn’t cute!
Let’s skip to me for a minute… I gained 32 pounds while pregnant, lost all of it the first year after the baby was born and then gained almost 20 of it back in year 2 to 3. “Really Ro, you let yourself go like that?” I had never been that big. In my past weight loss plans, I would diet AND work out. Normally that would work but at this current period, I’m a single Mom working full time. I didn’t have the energy.
Start with a Small Goal
This time I started off small by not working out but just watching what I ate. I cut out starches like bread, rice, etc. to maybe once a week (if that). Of course the sweets had to go altogether! I stayed on this plan for about 3 months and it was a success! I lost about 8 inches and went down about 9 pounds. It may not seem like a lot but my goal was to change my eating habits and lose weight but not too quickly. By achieving this goal, my eating habits positively changed. I didn’t want sweets as much and bread and rice… I didn’t really want it all. To me- I achieved a goal so I celebrated the small success!
Space out Your Goal
Lets go back to my brother. Fast forward– he is now enrolled in grad school working on his Master’s of Education. He decided to pace himself by taking one class a semester. It would take him about 13 years total (he started, stopped and then started again). In order for him to achieve his BIG goal, he thought it would be smart to space out this goal so that extra stress doesn’t consume him. It paid off… in Spring 2017, my brother walked across that stage yelling… “Mama, I made it!” (he is a clown, LOL)
No Added Stress
We all want to get there, get it done fast but many times that adds on more stress than needed. Honestly, if you pace yourself you are more apt to achieve quality work instead of something quick to make it to the finish line. In many cases- working hard not smart– will probably have you doing the work all over again anyway b/c more than likely you won’t be pleased.
Prioritize and Organize Your Goals
You have a BIG goal in the end, right? You are figuring out a plan to achieve this big goal, right? The best way to begin is to prioritize! Click here to learn more about prioritizing.
Example: You just started your new job and you already have a plan that w/in 3 years you want to make management! Great goal but not always achievable nowadays with so much competition in the workforce and companies making budget cuts. Here is how I would prioritize my goals:
- I have to learn my current role and the culture of the company so I will start there, it should take me about a year.
- By year 2, I will find a mentor. They will help me organize my smaller goals, help me further map out my career and in the meantime, I’ll be building a relationship with this mentor to achieve my bigger goal.
- In year 3, I will begin my research, reading about management-type postings (maybe even applying) to narrow down which position would be a better fit. I will also perform mock interviews since it’s been 3 years since I’ve done one; I want to be ready in case my application is picked!
Try Not to get Discouraged
I know this is easier said then done, but in reality achieving your BIG goal doesn’t always happen when you want it to. It could be God saying “it’s not your time yet” or maybe you need a little more time to get ready. I teach this a lot as a leader b/c most of these millennials (Bless their Hearts) want new positions so fast and so quickly and they get so depressed if they don’t get it. Then what happens? They are ready to move on to the next company. I’m like… “Hun, you have only been here for 2 years; jumping from company to company is not a good look on your resume.” This is why pacing yourself and celebrating small successes will keep you motivated until you reach that BIG goal. You are less likely to become discouraged!
Someone will be Proud
You don’t know how proud I was to see my brother walk across that stage; almost brought a tear to my eye- LOL! It wasn’t only b/c of the degree, it’s b/c I know the journey he endured and I was proud that he didn’t feel like he had to rush to finish. Shoot I’m proud of myself, my daughter is now 4 and I have continued to keep off the weight! Although I’m not as active as I want to be to lose more weight faster, my eating habits have changed so that helps maintain my weight loss. Spread the word!!! Put it on social media; tell your family, friends… anyone that will help you celebrate the small successes. Everyone loves validation! Lastly, don’t forget to make yourself proud… that is what gives you the push to move onto the next goal!