On any successful journey, there are going to be bumps in the road, the little twist and turns along the way, but if we are to meet our goals we need to ensure that these do not deter us.
We need to make sure that we take the right precautions to ensure that we can surpass these motivation blips and reach the target.
Here are 10 roadblocks that we need to navigate successfully in order to achieve our goals:
1. No clear focus
We need to have absolute clarity over our goals and destination. Only then can we ensure that we’re on the right track. This is the first and also the most important step in hitting our goal. When we have the wrong focus, no matter how hard we work we will not hit the target. Create clear goals. The more detailed, the better
2. No real purpose
In order to achieve anything it has to have some significance for us. There has to be some meaning or purpose behind it. When I tried to run 10k just to get fit, I gave up, the reason why wasn’t big enough for me.
Yet one year later I was able to complete a marathon. Why? Because I had a strong purpose. I wanted to do it to help raise money for friends struggling with cancer. We need to understand why our goal is important to us as this will keep us going through the difficult times.
3. Unrealistic goals
Impossible goals are, by their very nature, not possible to achieve. We need to be realistic about our capabilities and set attainable goals. We can set bold goals, or stretch targets, but impossible goals will just kill our motivation. We need to be bold but realistic in what we aim for.
4. Lack of belief
People are not afraid of hard work, they are afraid of failure. To increase our success we need to create plans that show us how we will succeed, or we need to find examples of others who have succeeded to give us the belief that we can do it too. When I ran my first marathon at the age of 52, knowing Farujah Singh a 100-year-old Indian had completed the London Marathon, gave me the belief I could do it too.
We need to have clear plans or examples of others, like ourselves, who have achieved success.
5. No recognition
We repeat what gets recognized. We need to share our goals with our friends, family, or an accountability partner and keep them informed of our progress. Their recognition of our efforts will keep us motivated.
6. Being overwhelmed
When we are overwhelmed we become paralyzed and it’s usually because it feels like there is too much to do. But in reality, this is often because we just don’t know where to start. We panic, not sure what to do next. We look at all the possibilities and then we just freeze. We need to just start, pick something, pick anything. Look to make some progress. We will soon figure out whether it’s the right thing or not much quicker than by being overwhelmed
“The journey of a 1000 miles begins with a single step”. – Lao Tzu
Shiny object syndrome is a killer, especially when the going gets tough or if things become repetitive. Small distractions easily divert our focus and then any progress we were hoping to make gets lost. The best approach is to schedule our work for when we are most focused.
For me this is early mornings between 6-9am. The better we know ourselves, our habits, and our preferences the easier it becomes to schedule the important work and avoid those times when we are easily distracted. It also pays to create a quiet space with as few distractions as possible.
8. Setbacks and failures
Failures and setbacks are inevitable and we need to make sure that they don’t derail our attitude or confidence, in our pursuit of our goals. They are a natural part of the process and we should not only expect them but plan for them. So that when they happen we can actually see this as progress. A natural progression of our efforts.
“The phoenix must burn to emerge.” – Janet Fitch
When we set bold goals for ourselves we need to set realistic timescales and pace ourselves. Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither were bold goals achieved. Bold goals take time and we need to make sure that we give ourselves every chance to be successful. We need to not only start strongly but look to have the energy to finish strongly too.
10. Lack of progress
When we fail to make progress more often than not, it’s that we lack visibility into our real progress and this can cause us to give up when the finishing line is just around the corner. We need to have a clear plan of expected progress and track our actual progress against it so that we can see our performance and be motivated by our progress.
If we can avoid these ten potential pitfalls we will give ourselves a much better chance of succeeding.