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8 Things That Are Secretly Destroying Your Plan

8 Things That Are Secretly Destroying Your Plan

First, let’s agree on something. Without a plan, you lack direction and focus and have no way to measure progress. You can only measure what happened, not the progress you are making. Basically, without a plan you are planning to fail. But having a plan doesn’t mean you will succeed. Often times, even with a plan, you will fail. Here are eight things that most likely are destroying your plan.

1. You set unrealistic time frames to achieve your goals.

You can’t become a successful person overnight and you can’t lose 100 pounds in one week. (I am sorry to tell you that these things advertised in infomercials don’t actually work.) You need to set realistic goals, or you will be disappointed when you don’t achieve your “big” goal, and that might lead to you giving up. That’s something we don’t want, right?

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2. You are not asking for support.

You can’t always make it on your own, and requesting support from your friends, colleagues, family and coach can give you the extra oomph you need to succeed. It’s OK to ask for help.

3. You are not learning from your mistakes.

Along the way, you are going to make mistakes. In order to learn and fix things, you need to step back and observe what went wrong. Don’t ignore it and hope it won’t happen again. Not learning from your mistakes can also lead you to beating yourself up. Avoid this path by accepting the mistake, learning and moving forward.

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4. You don’t believe.

As Yoda said to Luke Skywalker, “You don’t believe it, that’s why you fail.” You have to have faith that things are going to work out, that everything you do will work out in the end. You need to believe in yourself and your abilities, because YOU CAN DO IT. A favorite quote of mine says: “By believing passionately in something that does not yet exist, we create it.” You see, the first step before anyone believes in you is believing in yourself.

5. You have Plan B which is distracting you from Plan A.

As Will Smith said:

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Will Smith QUote, destroy plan, Quote by will smith, No reason to have plan b, plan a,

    The mentality behind having a “Plan B” is solely based on the idea of you failing; therefore it is fundamentally flawed. By having a back up plan, you already accept the idea that there is a possibility that “Plan A” (which is totally awesome) will fail. So guess what? You will fail because you already told yourself that when you do fail that, “Oh hey, no worries, I have a back up plan.”

    6. You are not improving.

    Don’t stop improving. Try to learn new things and acquire new skills as much as you can. Don’t be disappointed if your business plan fails because you stopped improving.

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    7. You are not willing to change.

    You and your plan must be nimble and able to adapt as conditions change. When setting up plans, you should pay attention to the changes around you. You should try to adapt as quickly as possible when something unexpected happens. Sometimes you will have to move on; other times, you will have to overcome difficulties. You shouldn’t be afraid to make changes.

    8. You are not fully committed.

    You can’t be lazy when it comes to your plans. You can’t procrastinate. If you are procrastinator, read how to stop procrastinating in 5 easy steps.You must be fully devoted to your plans and goals or you won’t reach the end zone. If you lack commitment, you won’t give the act of goal attainment, full effort. And as with anything in life, if you don’t give it your all, you receive mediocre results. Commitment is crucial for attaining any goal.

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    What would you add to the list? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.

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    Last Updated on July 21, 2021

    The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)

    The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)

    No matter how well you set up your todo list and calendar, you aren’t going to get things done unless you have a reliable way of reminding yourself to actually do them.

    Anyone who’s spent an hour writing up the perfect grocery list only to realize at the store that they forgot to bring the list understands the importance of reminders.

    Reminders of some sort or another are what turn a collection of paper goods or web services into what David Allen calls a “trusted system.”[1]

    A lot of people resist getting better organized. No matter what kind of chaotic mess, their lives are on a day-to-day basis because they know themselves well enough to know that there’s after all that work they’ll probably forget to take their lists with them when it matters most.

    Fortunately, there are ways to make sure we remember to check our lists — and to remember to do the things we need to do, whether they’re on a list or not.

    In most cases, we need a lot of pushing at first, for example by making a reminder, but eventually we build up enough momentum that doing what needs doing becomes a habit — not an exception.

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    From Creating Reminders to Building Habits

    A habit is any act we engage in automatically without thinking about it.

    For example, when you brush your teeth, you don’t have to think about every single step from start to finish; once you stagger up to the sink, habit takes over (and, really, habit got you to the sink in the first place) and you find yourself putting toothpaste on your toothbrush, putting the toothbrush in your mouth (and never your ear!), spitting, rinsing, and so on without any conscious effort at all.

    This is a good thing because if you’re anything like me, you’re not even capable of conscious thought when you’re brushing your teeth.

    The good news is you already have a whole set of productivity habits you’ve built up over the course of your life. The bad news is, a lot of them aren’t very good habits.

    That quick game Frogger to “loosen you up” before you get working, that always ends up being 6 hours of Frogger –– that’s a habit. And as you know, habits like that can be hard to break — which is one of the reasons why habits are so important in the first place.

    Once you’ve replaced an unproductive habit with a more productive one, the new habit will be just as hard to break as the old one was. Getting there, though, can be a chore!

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    The old saw about anything you do for 21 days becoming a habit has been pretty much discredited, but there is a kernel of truth there — anything you do long enough becomes an ingrained behavior, a habit. Some people pick up habits quickly, others over a longer time span, but eventually, the behaviors become automatic.

    Building productive habits, then, is a matter of repeating a desired behavior over a long enough period of time that you start doing it without thinking.

    But how do you remember to do that? And what about the things that don’t need to be habits — the one-off events, like taking your paycheck stubs to your mortgage banker or making a particular phone call?

    The trick to reminding yourself often enough for something to become a habit, or just that one time that you need to do something, is to interrupt yourself in some way in a way that triggers the desired behavior.

    The Wonderful Thing About Triggers — Reminders

    A trigger is anything that you put “in your way” to remind you to do something. The best triggers are related in some way to the behavior you want to produce.

    For instance, if you want to remember to take something to work that you wouldn’t normally take, you might place it in front of the door so you have to pick it up to get out of your house.

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    But anything that catches your attention and reminds you to do something can be a trigger. An alarm clock or kitchen timer is a perfect example — when the bell rings, you know to wake up or take the quiche out of the oven. (Hopefully you remember which trigger goes with which behavior!)

    If you want to instill a habit, the thing to do is to place a trigger in your path to remind you to do whatever it is you’re trying to make into a habit — and keep it there until you realize that you’ve already done the thing it’s supposed to remind you of.

    For instance, a post-it saying “count your calories” placed on the refrigerator door (or maybe on your favorite sugary snack itself)  can help you remember that you’re supposed to be cutting back — until one day you realize that you don’t need to be reminded anymore.

    These triggers all require a lot of forethought, though — you have to remember that you need to remember something in the first place.

    For a lot of tasks, the best reminder is one that’s completely automated — you set it up and then forget about it, trusting the trigger to pop up when you need it.

    How to Make a Reminder Works for You

    Computers and ubiquity of mobile Internet-connected devices make it possible to set up automatic triggers for just about anything.

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    Desktop software like Outlook will pop up reminders on your desktop screen, and most online services go an extra step and send reminders via email or SMS text message — just the thing to keep you on track. Sandy, for example, just does automatic reminders.

    Automated reminders can help you build habits — but it can also help you remember things that are too important to be trusted even to habit. Diabetics who need to take their insulin, HIV patients whose medication must be taken at an exact time in a precise order, phone calls that have to be made exactly on time, and other crucial events require triggers even when the habit is already in place.

    My advice is to set reminders for just about everything — have them sent to your mobile phone in some way (either through a built-in calendar or an online service that sends updates) so you never have to think about it — and never have to worry about forgetting.

    Your weekly review is a good time to enter new reminders for the coming weeks or months. I simply don’t want to think about what I’m supposed to be doing; I want to be reminded so I can think just about actually doing it.

    I tend to use my calendar for reminders, mostly, though I do like Sandy quite a bit.

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    Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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    Reference

    [1] Getting Things Done: Trusted System

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