Use goals to live longer. No medicine in the world is as powerful in bringing about long life as is the desire to do something. -The Magic of Big Thinking
Do you ever feel like you reach for the stars and never seem to get where you want? Like you’re trying so hard but not getting the results you want?
You’re not alone.Advertising
But here’s the good news: you’re already ahead of 99% of people. You just need to tweak your approach and you’ll reach your ultimate goal. Here are eight ways to get you going on the right path:
1. Set the right types of goals.
Ever heard of a big, hairy, audacious goal (BHAG)? It’s a term coined by Jim Collins, author of Good to Great, to describe a goal that’s strategic and emotion-driven. Collins advocates setting these types of goals because the traditional “SMART” goals (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time-driven) lack the emotional connection necessary for accomplishing big life goals. A better approach, according to Mark Murphy, CEO of Leadership IQ, a leadership training and research company, is to form “HARD” goals:
- Heartfelt: having an emotional attachment to your goal.
- Animated: motivated by a vision, picture or movie in your mind.
- Required: goals need to feel so urgent and necessary that you have no other choice but to start acting on them immediately.
- Difficult: drag you out of your comfort zone, activating your senses and attention.
2. Map out your plan.
It’s not enough to have a goal. You need a plan to accomplish it too. This is where many people fail. They set goals but don’t follow-up and create a plan to get started. When this happens, big goals seem overwhelming and we’re more likely to give up.Advertising
Create a road map to reach your goal. Plan one or two actions you can take each week and focus on doing small things every day. For example, if your goal is to start a new business this year, this week you can choose a URL and do some research on building a WordPress website. The key is to break your goal down into smaller steps that are more achievable.
3. Visualize and reflect.
Social scientist Frank Niles, Ph.D., says:
When we visualize an act, the brain generates an impulse that tells our neurons to “perform” the movement. This creates a new neural pathway–clusters of cells in our brain that work together to create memories or learned behaviors–that primes our body to act in a way consistent to what we imagined.
Visualize yourself reaching your goals, including the process and work it will take to get there (this is important). Try to feel what it will be like once you reach those big accomplishments. This will form a lasting picture in your mind.
4. Write yourself a letter.
I love this tip from John Carlton, the legendary copywriter. He says, “My trick to setting goals is very simple: I sit down and write myself a letter, dated exactly one year ahead.”
Carlton says you should write yourself a detailed letter describing your life one year from now. It’s a powerful technique and is another way to use visualization to map out your desired outcome in your mind.Advertising
5. Take action every day.
Look, it doesn’t matter how much you learn if you don’t take action. Don’t get caught up in analysis paralysis. The best way to learn is by doing. Embrace failure–it’s the stepping stone to success.
6. Tell others.A psychology professor at Dominican University found that people who wrote down their goals, shared them with others, and maintained accountability for their goals were 33% more likely to achieve them. So go spread the word to your family and friends, and let them in on your goals and plans. You’ll likely get valuable feedback too.
7. Plan for setbacks.
Being a good goal-setter is kind of like boxing; you need to learn to roll with the punches because you know you’re going to get hit. The best way to minimize the impact of setbacks is to plan for them. Have a contingency plan for when things go wrong. Be prepared to react and learn from those setbacks. They’ll be valuable learning opportunities.
8. Evaluate your progress every week.
Ask yourself: what did I do this week to get closer to my goal? What worked? What didn’t?
And don’t forget to celebrate your success too. Allow yourself to bask in the success of a great week and then get right back at it and check the next things off your list. That’s how you’ll reach your ultimate goals.
Featured photo credit: zen! via flickr.com
Last Updated on August 20, 2019
26 Useful Things to Learn Now That Will Change Your Life
If you pay attention to your everyday life careful enough, you’ll know that you can learn from everything and everyone you come across. Our life is basically full of useful lessons that we should learn.
1. Primacy and recency: People mostly remember the first and last things that occurred, barely the middle.
When scheduling an interview, ask the employer the time slots they do interviews and try to be the first or the last.
2. If you work in a bar or in customer service of any kind, put a mirror behind you at the counter.
In this way, angry customers who approach you will have to see themselves in the mirror behind you and the chance of them behaving irrationally will be lowered significantly.
3. Once you make a sales pitch, don’t say anything else.
This works in sales, but it can also be applied in other ways.
My previous boss was training me and just gave me pointers. I was working at a gym trying to sell memberships. He told me that once I got all the small talk out of the way and presented the prices, the first person to talk would lose.
It didn’t seem like a big deal but it actually worked. Often there were long periods of awkward silence as the person tried to come up with some excuses, but usually they bought.
4. If you ask someone a question and they only partially answer, just wait.
If you stay silent and keep eye contact, they will usually continue to talk.
5. Chew gum when you’re approaching a situation that would make you nervous, like public speaking or bungee jumping.
When we eat, our brain tell ourselves, “I would not be eating if I were danger. So I’m not in danger.” This has helped me to stay calm.
6. People will always remember how you made them feel, not what you said.
Also, most people like talking about themselves; so ask lots of questions about them.
7. When you’re learning something new, teach it to a friend. Let them ask you questions about it.
If you’re able to teach something well, you will be sure that you’ve understood it very well.
8. If you get yourself to be really happy and excited to see other people, they will react the same to you.
It doesn’t always happen the first time, but it will definitely happen the next time.
9. The physical effects of stress — breathing rate and heart rate — are almost identical to the physical effects of courage.
When you’re feeling stressed in any situations, immediately reframe it : Your body is getting ready to be courageous, you are NOT stressed.
10. Pay attention to people’s feet.
If you approach two people in the middle of a conversation, and they only turn their torsos and not their feet, they don’t want you to join in the conversation.
Similarly, if you are in a conversation with a coworker who you think is paying attention to you and their torso is turned towards you but their feet are facing in another direction, they want the conversation to end.
11. Confidence is more important than knowledge.
Don’t be intimidated by anyone, everyone is playing a role and wearing a mask.
12. If you pretend to be something for long enough, you will eventually become it.
Fake it till you make it. Period.
13. Not to be creepy, but if you want to stare at someone unashamedly, look directly past them and wait for them to try and meet your eyes.
When they fail to do that, they’ll look around (usually nervously for a second) they won’t look at you again for some time. This is your chance to straight up stare at this person for at least 45 seconds.
And as suggested by
you’re staring at someone and get caught, DON’T turn your head or your body to look away, because that just confirms that you were staring.
Just move your EYEBALLS off the person. Unlike turning your head, it’s instantaneous. And the person will think you were just looking at something behind them and that they were mistaken for thinking you were staring. Do it confidently, and ignore any reaction from the person, and you can sell it every single time.
After a second, you can even look back at them with a “Why are you staring at me?” look on your face to really cement the deal!
14. Build a network.
Become the information source, and let the information be yours. Even grabbing a beer with a former colleague once a year will keep you in the loop at the old office.
Former coworkers might have gotten a new position in that office you always wanted to work in, great! Go to them for a beer, and ask about the office. It’s all about connections and information.
15. If you are angry at the person in front of you driving like a grandmother…
Pretend it is your grandmother, it will significantly reduce your road rage.
16. Stand up straight.
No slouching, hands out of pockets, and head held up high. It’s not just a cliche — you literally feel better and people around you feel more confident in you.
17. Avoid saying “I think,” and “I believe” unless absolutely necessary.
These are phrases that do not evoke confidence, and will literally do you no good.
18. When feeling anxious, clean up your home or work space.
You will feel happier and more accomplished than before.
19. Always buy the first pitcher or round of drinks.
You’d be surprised how long you could drink on the phrase “I bought the first one.”
20. Going into an interview… be interested in your interviewers.
If you focus on learning about them, you’ll seem to be more interesting and dynamic. (Again, people love to talk about themselves.)
21. Pay attention parents! Always give your kid a choice that makes them think they are in control.
For instance, when I want my son to put his shoes on I will say ,”do you want to put your star wars shoes on or your shark shoes on?”
Pro-tip: In some cases, this works on adults.
22. Your action affects your attitude more than your attitude affects your action.
As my former teacher said “You can jump and dance FOR joy, but you can also jump and dance yourself joyful.”
23. When a group of people laugh, people will instinctively look at the person they feel closest to in that group.
Notice who you look at and who look at you when you laugh with a group of people!
24. If you want to build rapport or gain someone’s trust quickly, match their body posture and position.
If someone is sitting with her legs crossed, cross your legs. If they’re leaning away from you, lean away from them. If they’re leaning towards you, lean towards them.
Mirroring and matching body position is a subconscious way to tell if someone trusts you or is comfortable with you. If you’re sitting with your arms crossed and you notice someone else is sitting with her arms crossed, that is a good indicator that you have/are successfully built/building rapport with that person.
25. The Benjamin Franklin Effect (suggested by)
I find the basis of the Benjamin Franklin effect is very useful and extends far beyond pencil borrowing. This knowledge is useful in the world of flirting too.
Asking a girl in your class if you can borrow a pencil or her notes or to explain the homework will make her more likely to like you than if you let her borrow your stuff or are the one to help her. Even just asking a girl to buy you drinks (facetiously) leaves a much bigger impression than offering to or actually buying a girl a drink.
The best part is it kills 3 birds with one stone: you get the advantages of the favor itself, the person subconsciously likes you more, and it makes them more open to future favors and conversation.
26. Handle panic and anxiety behaviors by tapping fingers (Suggested by)
When you’re feeling stressed, worried or angry, tap each finger tip while thinking (or speaking quietly) a few specific words about what is bothering you. Repeat the same words while tapping each of your 10 fingers, including thumbs.
For example, tap while saying, “I’m so angry with her…” Doing so will likely take the charge out of the feeling and return you to a more resourceful (better feeling) state of being. It’s called EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) or “tapping,” and it is useful in many life situations – emotional sadness, physical pain, food cravings, traumatic memories…
Featured photo credit: Nicole Wolf via unsplash.com