How many times have you set yourself goals, only to return to them a while later and realise they are not achievable, or now is not the right time, or life just got in the way? We are often expected to have great visions of what we will achieve in our life or to have set ourselves goals, but the truth is that many of us struggle to know what those goals should even be or where their life is even going.
To truly set ourselves achievable, realistic goals, it is crucial that we act with great self-awareness and self confidence. Building on our own self-confidence will set the foundations that we need to having a more successful life. Unfortunately there is no magic pill that we can take to get self-confident or self-aware, it's a journey and it takes work.
If you are serious about moving in the direction of your dreams, the question you need to ask yourself is: are you ready to begin this journey?
These 3 steps will help you move forwards towards success.
First, you need to take stock of where you are at. It takes real self-awareness to begin this journey, the ability to accept where you truly are at. This can be in your work or home life, your relationships or your career. Look at what you have achieved and be proud of where you are in this moment. Think about what it has taken to get you to this point and identify the skills and strengths that have enabled you to be here. What would your friends say about your strengths? What about your friends and colleagues? What have you achieved over the past year or few years?
Be truthful with yourself. Try not to think too critically or negatively, this is a moment for you to take stock of your life without judgement. Take a step back, think factually. Right now I am.... to get here I have.... When you train your brain to think in this way, you are grounding yourself in reality. This is key to building confidence that will last.
Look at areas where you would like to do better. Consider this; what would it take to learn skills and acquire more knowledge? How is your motivation right now? Do you have the motivation to go after these?
Now, think about where you want to be. Where do you dream of being in the next few months? What about the next year, the next 5 years or even the next 10? Again, remain self-aware. Be truthful with yourself and within the realms of what is truly possible for you.
Pick one small goal from the ideas that come to mind. Setting small goals means you are achieving and building success upon success. We'll come back to this later. Write this goal down so you can return to it in the future. Leave the rest of the page blank. Easy? Great.
Once you have done this, you can rinse and repeat the exercise as much as you like with another goal or goals. You just need to leave a page per goal and make sure you are picking small, achievable targets.
Next it's time to work backwards from this goal. Think about what has to happen just before you get to this point. What are the steps you need to take in order to get there? Write these steps down underneath the goals you have written. Writing down our goals and the steps we are going to take to get there, is one way of helping ourselves commit to taking a journey. Doing this helps you begin to build the connection between where you are now and where you want to be.
2. Manage your mind
High performing athletes approach their goals by utilising positive imagery, of them shooting the hoop or scoring the goal, before they go out on to the playing field. Pick one of the goals you have written down, and try this. Visualise what achieving this goal looks like for you in your head.
What does this feel like? What does the moment you achieve this goal look like?
When you visualise it's important to put yourself right in the middle of your vision. Add the moment, the colours and the emotions that you feel. Having a powerful image you can access in your mind, will help sustain you throughout your journey.
Do this for all of the goals you have set yourself. The key is spending time ensuring that this vision is strong in your mind, something that you can return to.
3. Committing to success
Finally, you must commit to getting there. Your journey may be full of challenges, of ups and downs. This is where your written goals will prove important. Commit to making the effort, be prepared for many missteps and lots of learning along the way. Enjoy it, have fun with it. The best thing you can do for yourself is to give yourself the space you need in order to develop, treat this with curiosity and good humour. Sometimes you will get there, other times it will be harder.
Another way to commit to success is to tell somebody that you trust about your goal or goals. Tell them about the journey you are on. Perhaps ask them to buddy up with you, or have regular conversations about your progress, your challenges and your wins. Having somebody take interest in you and your journey means that you are not struggling on alone... and talking about what is going on can help bring clarity and encourage you to keep going.
Identify the easy steps you can do day today that will help you make small changes. Stay away from perfection instead, enjoy getting things done. Remember to set and achieve small goals, celebrate and take notice of what you have achieved every day, every week and every month.
It is important to reward yourself. You can do this with encourage words, small pleasures or something that helps you give yourself positive reinforcement.
When you begin to achieve small goals and celebrate your success. You will feel your confidence begin to build. When this happens, it's time for you to go for a bigger goal. Something that will really stretch you.
As long as you keep on stretching yourself enough, but not too much, you'll find your self-confidence building apace. What's more, you'll have earned your self-confidence – because you’ll have put in the hard graft necessary to be successful!
I can help you through this process
These steps are a simple guide to take you through to a journey of success. If you'd like support going through this process, or have questions about what this means for you, I'd love to hear from you! I offer a free one coaching consultation session, we can talk through what's going on for you now and where you want to be.