Action #1: Understand the Why
It all starts with understanding your “why” — your reason for going after your goal. Knowing the reason behind your goal is the fuel that will keep you going when everyone else tells you to quit. Your why will give you the power to push back the demons of doubt that will inevitably creep into your mind (and trust me, they will). Understanding your why is your perseverance engine — it keeps you going even when you think you can’t. It’s that important. Know your why before you start the journey!
Action #2: Plan in 3-D
Remember, it’s not about creating a perfect plan, because there is no such thing. It’s about creating a plan to succeed no matter what obstacles you encounter:
- Define it: Define your goal. Be specific. Know the answers to these questions: What are you after and when do you want it? If you don’t know your goal, you won’t know how to measure your progress, and if you can’t measure your progress, you won’t be able to achieve it. Once you’ve defined your goal, WRITE IT DOWN and post it in a place where you will see it daily, even hourly. Never allow yourself to forget your mission. Your goal must always be on your mind.
- Divide it: Once you know your goal, you can create an action plan. Start by dividing each action into bite-size daily steps you can take to meet your goal. Think of it as smashing your Milestone Goal with a sledgehammer in order to reduce it to small pebbles you collect every day. Rome wasn’t built in a day, nor is your Milestone Goal; daily progress is the secret of success.
- Do it daily: Feeling like you’re making progress is critical to keeping you motivated as you pursue your goal. Get in the habit of asking yourself every morning, “What action can I take today toward my goal?” No two days will be the same, but work toward your goal every day. Remember, no matter how small your progress, it’s still progress. And to ensure you’re learning what works and what doesn’t, review your progress daily. Understand the actions that are helping you make the progress you seek. Daily action is the key to success.
Action #3: Exercise to Execute
The pill doesn’t work overnight. You have to take it every day for about thirty days to feel a difference, sixty days to see a difference, and ninety days to make a difference. Still interested in taking the pill? How much does it cost? It’s FREE! And there’s no time limit on the offer.
Day 1: How many push-ups can you do without stopping? Be honest and stop as soon as you can no longer perform a push-up using perfect form. Can’t do a push-up from the plank position? No problem; drop your knees to the floor and do as many as possible from that starting position.
Day 2: Go for a thirty-minute walk. Can’t do thirty straight minutes? No problem; divide it into shorter times until you can do it! If you can only do five minutes at a time, do that six times for a total of thirty minutes over the course of the day.
Day 3: Perform your maximum number of push-ups one at a time. For example, if you can do ten, start in the standing position, squat down, perform a push-up, stand back up, and repeat nine more times.
Day 4: Repeat Day 2.
Day 5: Repeat Day 3.
Day 6: Repeat Day 2.
Day 7: Have fun and go outside to play!
stand up and do as many individual ones (standing between each one) as possible. How many extra ones can you do: three, five, seven, more? Whatever the number, make it your new maximum.
Day 9: Go for a thirty-minute walk. Even if you had to use six increments of five minutes each in Day 2, you can probably do it all at once now.
Day 10: Do your new maximum number of push-ups one at a time, standing between each one.
Day 11: Repeat Day 9.
Day 12: Repeat Day 10.
Day 13: Repeat Day 9.
Day 14: Repeat Day 10.
Day 15: Go have fun!
Day 16: Perform a one-set maximum of push-ups, but stand up afterward and do as many individual ones (standing between each one) as possible. How many extra ones can you do: three, five, seven, more? Whatever the number, make it your new maximum.
Day 17: Go for a thirty-minute walk. You’re probably covering more distance in thirty minutes now than you were in Day 2 or even Day 9.
Day 18: Do your new maximum number of push-ups one at a time, standing between each one.
Day 19: Repeat Day 17.
Day 20: Repeat Day 18.
Day 21: Repeat Day 17.
Day 22: Get Fired Up! You’re on your way to being unstoppable!
Action #4: Recognize Your Reason to Believe
The key to recognizing your reason to believe is to focus on something you know is true.
What’s great about recognizing a reason to believe is that it will not only power you during your darkest, most trying times, it will also inspire others to stick with you. Believing in something can be contagious, and when you infect others with a similar reason to believe, you improve your chances of success exponentially. We all want to believe in something, and there’s no better person to believe in than yourself. Believe to achieve!
Action #5: Survey Your Habits
There’s a simple three-step process for building habits to help you achieve your goal. It’s called ACT:
Aware — Be aware of the habit that is holding you back. If you’re not sure what it is, ask a friend, teacher, or expert. Be willing to set your ego aside and take an honest look at actions you take for granted. Success is in the details.
Concentrate — Focus on the action or actions that need changing. If you consistently show up late to work or school, then you’ve developed a habit. Identify the action that’s making you late and concentrate on ways to take a new action that will change your habit, such as getting up ten minutes earlier in the morning.
Take control — Once you’ve evaluated the action that needs to be changed in order to build a habit that helps instead of hinders you, take control of it! Know that any action you generate is your own — you OWN it, and it’s within your control. Don’t get discouraged; it can take time to change old habits, but it can be done. IT’S UP TO YOU!
As you start to put ACT to use, a funny thing will happen: You’ll build a habit of surveying your habits. What better habit is there than one that helps you constantly improve?
Action #6: Improvise
The scary thing about some improvising is that you have no idea how your idea will turn out. That’s okay; no one does. But if you don’t try to improvise, your results are guaranteed: nothing.
To improvise is to take action. You won’t know if it’s the right action until you’ve ventured down the path of your decision. If it wasn’t right, don’t allow yourself to get wrapped up in it; just smile to yourself and say, “Okay, I just learned another way NOT to do something,” and move on.
When an obstacle comes between you and your goal, smile confidently and know that the obstacle is there to stop the other people who don’t have the courage or the willingness to improvise around it. You are not like everyone else; you enjoy a good obstacle because conquering obstacles makes you stronger. Not only that, you’re prepared because you know the secret to overcoming the obstacle — improvise!
Action #7: Seek Expert Advice
We humans love to think we know it all. We can be bold in our thinking, yet backward in our approach to following up on an idea. Pick up a newspaper or read the front page of a news website and you’ll find examples of people failing spectacularly because they didn’t ask for advice from someone who had journeyed down a path similar to theirs. Seeking an expert is no different from asking a teacher for help in solving a homework problem. Depending on the size and boldness of your goal, you may have to find multiple experts to help you chart a course to success. You will never know it all, and the sooner you come to grips with this concept, the faster you can get on your path to fulfilling your dreams.
You will never know it all. Use experts to help you excel
- Define my “why” — why is this goal worth focusing on and why is it worth dedicating time to?
- Decide who can help me get started on the goal.
Be prepared to seek out a variety of experts. There will be experts to help get you started, some to help get you unstuck, and others to help get you across the goal line.
Action #8: Team Up
Teammates play another important role: They can help when you’re feeling stuck. A teammate’s attitude can make the difference between success and failure. When you’re on your journey, not every day will be bright. You may even have more dark days than sunny days. There will be days when you question yourself, and days when nothing seems to go your way. A great teammate can be your perfect pick-me-up when you’re feeling defeated. The challenge that has you stumped and feeling depressed may not have your teammate feeling the same way. It might even invigorate your teammate if the challenge requires skills that come naturally to that person. Before you know it you’ll be over the next obstacle thanks to your teammate. Even if neither of you knows exactly what to do, your teammate might know an expert who can help conquer the obstacle in your path.
No matter what your goal, always remember that nothing great was ever achieved without a team. Period. No single person can do it all. Teaming up is an essential step in accomplishing your dream. It can be the difference between languishing with inaction and finding unbelievable success.
Understand your why. When you know why you’re willing to work hard and take risks to achieve your goal, you’ll be able to show others why they should team up with you. Once you have a teammate, you can attract more teammates, and then there is no limit to what you can accomplish. It all starts with a dream. So what are you waiting for? Dream as if everything is possible. Dream big and GO FOR IT!