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Success Advice

How To Write Game Changing Goals In Six Easy Steps

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Goal Setting Inspirational Travel Picture

In every self-help book, you will ever read there is almost guaranteed to be a section on goal setting. Most of us, including me, seem to get this simple task wrong so I am going to attempt to address goal setting in this article.

My personal view on goal setting is that it’s been thought about and talked about way too much in the last few decades. It has become over complicated and continues to be something that we just don’t follow through on – I am very guilty of this myself.

What has been successful for me is just to cut through all the noise and develop a way of goal setting that is easy to follow, and doesn’t require hours and hours of your time. The quicker you can complete a list of your goals, the more likely you are not to overthink them.

 

Why should you write goals???

This realisation has taken a long time to come to me so I want to keep this part very straightforward so that anyone can understand it. The reason you need to write goals is because goals will assist you in improving your present-moment reality.

Properly written goals will help to inspire, create hope and fill you with desire. Anything that can make you feel better and help you re-focus in the present moment is going to be highly useful for you on your own journey of success.

So, every time you write a goal you are actually inspiring yourself in the present moment as well as assisting yourself to take action right now instead of tomorrow!

Below are the six easy steps that I follow to write game-changing goals. Feel free to use some or all of them when you write your own.

 

1. Try to aim for less than ten

I have found that when you start attempting to write more than ten goals for a year, you begin to tell yourself that what you want is too hard. The key to writing goals is not to write every single goal down but to concentrate your effort on your major goals.

Don’t let small goals confuse you. Often when people think of their smaller goals they are actually referring to tasks that are required to be completed as part of an overarching major goal. Find another way to track these if you can.

Recently, when I completed my goal list, I ended up with seven major goals. These seven were refined down from the initial nine that I came up with. It’s important to cull a few if they are things that are not a priority or might happen beyond the next twelve months.

 

2. Link them to your vision

One of the goals I wrote down on my list was to join Toastmasters and learn public speaking. After I had reread the goal, I realised that public speaking is not part of my vision, and it’s an ugly phrase that the majority of us are scared of.

So, what I advise to fix these types of issues is to write the goal down and mention your vision in the description. For me, this meant rewriting the goal to say “complete three months of Toastmasters, so I can start to inspire people with my talks.”

By adding in the part about inspiring people, I am directly linking the goal to a section of my vision which is to inspire the world through my work. For your own goals, you absolutely must do this.

If you look at your goals each day, and they don’t inspire you or make you feel passionate, then you will never follow through on them. You wouldn’t want that now would you?

 

3. Set a deadline

Notice how this step mentions deadline and not timeframe? That’s because a deadline has to be met but a timeframe is negotiable.

As you write your goals down you should have a separate column that says deadline. Next to each goal you should write a date that this goal must be completed by. Once all your goals are written down go back and look at the dates. Make sure the date you have put for each goal is realistic and as accurate as you can.

Then, check to see when deadlines fall. Try to have at least one goal expiring every three months (obviously this will depend on the size of the goal). This creates the feeling of progress which all of us humans crave, and it will subconsciously keep you motivated.

If all of your goals expire on the same date or in the same month, then you should rewrite your deadlines again.

Tim Denning - Hopes And Dreams Quote
 

4. Write them down in the right state of mind

Writing your goals down when you are in an angry or frustrated state will usually result in an uninspiring list of goals. Before you set aside some time to write your goals down, watch an inspiring movie, read something inspiring or do some exercise with high energy music.

This easy step will allow you to get the most out of writing your goals down. Ideally, you want to feel like nothing can stop you and everything in your life is moving in the direction you want it too. We don’t feel like this all the time, but we can create this feeling if we want too.

Try this and see the difference it has on the way your goals are worded. The movie I recommend watching before a goal setting session is Remember The Titans and the book I would recommend is The Motivation Manifesto if you’re stuck for ideas.

 

5. Keep them in your wallet

When you have finished writing your goals down, you need to display them somewhere where you won’t forget them. It’s useless going through a goal setting exercise if you never look at them again.

As soon as you have written your goals down you should print them out on a small piece of paper and keep them in your wallet. If you want to go the extra mile (and a lot of you will), then print your goals out and stick them on your desk, bedside table, and anywhere else that you will see them constantly.

This simple task helps you remember what’s important and why you should ignore distractions as much as possible that don’t relate to these goals. I have found that goals create focus and for anyone like me who constantly gets distracted, it keeps you in control.

 

6. Create accountability with some key people

The moment I finished writing down my own goals I emailed them to some key people. The reason why I recommend you do the same is that by doing this, you create leverage. It means that there other people out there who you have told what you have committed too.

The other major benefit is not so obvious and let me give you an example. One of the goals I wrote down was to meet a certain Silicon Valley Venture Capitalist named Bill Tai. The reason I included him was that I wanted the people reading my goals to know what’s important to me.

When key people around you know what’s important to you, they also keep a lookout for ways they can help you to achieve your goals (especially if that key person is fundamental to one of your goals). So far, I haven’t had luck in meeting Bill Tai yet, but as long as I keep telling people that this is important to me, eventually this goal will be realised.

Now, I just used this very point and demonstrated it to you. How? By telling all of you that this is my goal on the off chance that maybe one of you knows Bill Tai. Maybe it will help me achieve the goal or maybe it won’t say but what it will do is increase the chances of me achieving this goal.

It’s time to create some leverage. Share your goals in the comments section below or with me directly on my Facebook and Twitter.

Tim is best known as a long-time contributor on Addicted2Success. Tim's content has been shared hundreds of thousands of times and he has written multiple viral posts all around success, personal development, motivation, and entrepreneurship. During the day Tim works with the most iconic tech companies in the world, as an adviser, to assist them in expanding into Australia. By night, Tim coaches his students on the principles of personal development and the fundamentals of entrepreneurship. You can connect with Tim through his website www.timdenning.net or through his Facebook.

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15 Comments

15 Comments

  1. Praveen Regmi

    Jan 11, 2016 at 4:38 am

    I found the term goal setting too confusing previously. This gave a great insight. Definitely helpful for me. Thanks a lot Tim.

    • Tim Denning

      Jan 11, 2016 at 10:20 am

      Praveen I am glad the article was helpful for you. Thanks for reading!

  2. Wes Graham

    Jan 7, 2016 at 6:24 pm

    Thank you for such a wise and alturistic coontribution. I was going to list the wonderful portions of your content, but it was too long. Everything you contribute is a blessing to me and obviously others as well. I am new to goal setting and have only generally had goals and met them with great success and not so great. I have read a couple of goal setting specific books and systems, but your six easy steps clearly are game changing. You clearly are an asset to your clients and those who are fortunate enough to have come across your free content.

    Thank you, Tim. You have blessed me considerably. I know now that I don’t have to read much more, or search for a system or tool to attain my goals in a game-changing way. I look forward to reading more and connecting with you on twitter and facebook and email.
    To your success,
    Wes Graham

    • Tim Denning

      Jan 9, 2016 at 1:37 am

      Wes thank you for your very generous comments I don;t think anyone has been that positive about my work so far. There loads of books on goals but I find they are over-complicated. I hope these steps will help you to reach the success you deserve. Thanks again for reading.

  3. Emna

    Jan 7, 2016 at 8:27 am

    Great post. Thank you.

    • Tim Denning

      Jan 9, 2016 at 1:38 am

      Cheers Emma.

  4. Addicted 2 The Grind

    Jan 6, 2016 at 9:32 pm

    Tim this is another great read

    • Tim Denning

      Jan 7, 2016 at 8:12 am

      Thanks guys!

  5. Peter

    Jan 6, 2016 at 4:07 am

    Thank you for another fine article.

    I stopped using the term “deadline” years ago. To me it’s a very negative and depressing term. I like to stay positive, and so I set “goal times” instead of “deadlines”.

    Best wishes

    • Tim Denning

      Jan 6, 2016 at 7:25 am

      Cheers Peter for the nice words. I agree about the word deadline although I still use it on some rare occasions 🙂

  6. Toño

    Jan 6, 2016 at 3:27 am

    This very article is incredibly right on time for me, once again. I think the law of attraction somehow works here, as one of the youtubers I watch love to say, ‘your vibe attract your tribe’!

    I have set, and eventually achieved goals just at edge of the year and was very delighted & satisfied. I did move into a new place and paid all my debts, and my job is constantly improving as well as my attitude towards it. Howevere for the last few days I felt empty inside, like something was missing. I realized it is so called ‘post-achivement’ syndrome when after you got what you wanted you feel depressed. So now I need new goals to pursue. Goals, that will drives me to better version of myself.

    But for the last year I thought about goals setting in a different way. More often I felt huge pressure instead of inspiration by writting them off and you said it quite precisely, it’s been talked and thought about way too much and more you think of that process, more overwhelmed you become. I smiled at your line here ‘.. and for anyone like me who constantly gets distracted ..’ as it’s the same with me. I still working on my ability to focus, but reading Tony Robbins ‘Awaken the Giant Within’ has helped me find a ground.

    Thus, back to setting your goals, I think it is necessary, it may be or feel like that, but I begin to like the idea to go with the flow, naturally. You will need attributes to do so, like discipline, courage, your morning/daily routine, passion, motivation and clear idea (I like your quote in the picture by the way!) or at least to follow passion (and if you don’t have one – keep looking). I think, once again, you need to find a balance here, because there moments in your life when you just have to let it all go and be yourself, live your life and enjoy the very present moment, because not a single one of us guaranteed to have tomorrow. What do you think of it, Tim?

    Oh, and your last point about benefits of accountability and telling key people (or just good people, or all people) is actually pretty awesome. I’ve never thought about it that way as I love to keep my dreams and goals to myself, but hey, you cannot control everything, right? I love the idea to allow the universe work for you by telling your goals which may help to attract the exact circumstances and help you on your journey. That is just wonderful! Yesterday I shared some of ideas with people around me and it felt good.

    Thank you so much once again Tim, I enjoyed this morning reading and get my mind stretched and ready for the new and awesome day, my appreciation for your work and passion!

    ps: one more thing, I wake up today still under impression of movie you suggested, ‘The Blind Side’. Watched it last night and was speechless for a while. It touched so many aspects withing me that I barely had all my attention to think about all of it. Such inspiriational movie that gave me something I cannot explain yet. I going yo follow your advise and watch those movies you talked about in this article, as I am quite passionate about it. I am very grateful!

    Have a great day and stay well!

    • Tim Denning

      Jan 6, 2016 at 7:25 am

      Toño great to hear from you as always. Congrats on getting your life back together. You have come so far since you initially started some of the articles I posted so congrats. In relation to goals, I am in the same space as you and needing to challenge myself. That’s why I am going to learn the art of public speaking so wish me luck!

      I think you are spot on about living in the moment and you are clearly doing that my friend. Glad you watched The Blind Side it’s one of my favourite movies. Everyone I have told to watch it has said the same thing as you.

      Keep doing what you’re doing and been inspired. You will get where you want to go I am sure of it.

      • Toño

        Jan 7, 2016 at 3:09 am

        Thank you, Tim, it is always a pleasure to read your replies. I am still far away from the dream life I desire and lots of work ahead. I am still having my high & lows every day and my life is like rollercoaster. But sometimes I think I just cannot be satisfied and always want more..

        The art of public speaking is a great carft and actually I would love to hear from you one day your message, your pasion and your ideas, so I wish you all the good luck to achieve it! Even though I think we create our own luck, some magic help from the Universe will be beneficial 🙂

        Thank you for all kind words and support, I appreciate it greatly and it means a lot as additional motivation for me!

  7. Naman Kumar

    Jan 5, 2016 at 10:10 am

    Great article.
    Thanks for explaining and sharing the way one can fix up his goals in a better way.

    • Tim Denning

      Jan 5, 2016 at 9:12 pm

      No problem Naman. Hopefully there are a few tools you can use when writing your own goals. Cheers

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Success Advice

You Don’t Have To Listen To Every Bit Of Career Feedback. Some People Just Don’t Get You And That’s Fine!

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I recently got rejected from what I thought was a fantastic career opportunity. I was told that I was “Not entrepreneurial enough.”

Those that know me well know that it’s probably one of the few things I’m good at. Many of my mentors who I told this story to laughed out loud.

These three words were career feedback and I was always led to believe that to ignore this feedback would be ignorant and stupid.

I pondered that thought for a few days and then had a revelation: “I don’t have to listen to every bit of feedback I get.”

 

Pissed off is a natural first reaction.

That’s how I felt after someone told me I was crap at the very thing I love and have dedicated most of my time to. Our brain wants to be angry and fight back. Our first reaction, though, is often not what we should pay attention to.

“Empty space and time to reflect is how we process career feedback for what it really is: an opinion”

Don’t let your first reaction dominate how you think about the feedback. Maturity that can come at any age will show you to question everything – even your reaction.

 

Some people just don’t get you.

You’re not their type, they don’t like you, you speak a different language or you may have different values. Not everyone is going to get you and what you stand for and that’s okay. In my case, I didn’t connect.

Buying into the circus that is me is not for everyone. If you don’t like vulnerability or breaking comfort zones, then you probably won’t like me.

If you’re not obsessed with big goals, doing the impossible and trying to improve just a little bit every day, then you probably won’t like me.

That’s okay and I forgive you. I don’t have all the answers and I’m far from perfect – like the rest of us.

Learn to accept that some people will never get you and what you’re about.

That realization is how we overcome career feedback that we may not agree with.

 

Sometimes it’s any excuse. The real answer is something different.

Feedback can be disguised by the truth. The truth is maybe there was someone else the whole time and I never had a chance at this career opportunity. Maybe it wasn’t me at all.

Sometimes feedback is given because the real reason is much harder to deliver. It’s not easy to say “Tim, thanks but we hired someone else and you were never in the running.”

Admitting you never even had a chance is something many of us would never want to say. Being brutally honest takes courage, and courage is not everyone’s kind of kebab with garlic sauce on top, sprinkles and chili flakes.

 

We all get rejected.

I nearly forgot this fact. Everyone gets rejected. In fact, right now, someone is being rejected.

Rejection is not limited to you and me; learning to deal with it will only help us, not hinder our ability to achieve success in any field.

“We’ve all got 99 problems and thinking you’re special will only create more pointless thoughts that won’t serve you or your goals”

 

You’re responsible.

The thing about career feedback is that you have to take responsibility. Maybe in my case, I didn’t deliver the message of how obsessed and skilled I am at entrepreneurship. Maybe I could have done a better job at explaining my entrepreneurial background and passion.

It’s highly likely that I am entrepreneurial enough for this career opportunity and that it’s not a lack of skill at play here but a lack of effective communication.

“Responsibility always trumps the blame game and it helps us grow more as a person”

 

There’s always one lesson.

Mine was to develop more skills in strategy.

Let’s stop for one second: I hate the word strategy. The other career feedback I got was to do more strategy yet that’s not a skill of mine and I have no desire to do lots of that in my career.

The key here is that there’s always a lesson from all feedback and it might not be the intended lesson that the giver left you with.

There’s either a great lesson in the feedback or a reminder in the feedback of what you stand for. Don’t let any feedback compromise your values and who you are.

 

You are good enough.

You just have to believe in yourself and eventually, the right opportunity will find you.

Don’t give up your hopes and dreams because of one rejection. Interrupt the story in your head that plays on repeat and focuses on anger towards another person.

Replace that story with thoughts of how you can do better and get to the next opportunity.

Through rejection and bad career feedback, you find your way to what you’ve always wanted. That’s the hack and it works.

I’m off to suck up the rejection and take my own advice. Much respect.

If you want to increase your productivity and learn some more valuable life hacks, then join my private mailing list on timdenning.net

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Success Advice

6 Important Lessons That Will Lead You to Success

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Failure is a part of life and it’s nothing to be ashamed of because the most highly successful people are the ones who have experienced failures the most in their life. The general public usually learns about people and their work when they become successful but only a handful of people know about the immense struggles that those people have gone through. Unfortunately, we do not have the stories of their failures to which we can relate our own setbacks and this is why we perceive failure to be a bad thing.

People are afraid of failure because, from a very young age, they are taught that making mistakes and being wrong is a bad thing so when a person suffers from a failure, it’s possible for that person to experience some form of depression. It is important for you to understand failure is a way for you to learn and move on from the experience. It is literally impossible to live life forever without failing at something, unless you live your life so carefully that you forget to live at all.

Here are 6 lessons that you should embrace that will change in your life:

1. Keep Your Expectations Low

When it comes to life, people often expect things like family, business, and marriage to be constant and consistent throughout the years. However, this is not the case because life is not that simple and there are always ups and downs which you need to confront.

Having low expectations is totally understandable and justifiable but having high expectations from relationships and businesses could prove to be harmful if those things don’t last forever. In addition to this, keeping your expectations low helps you accept whatever comes from the situation. High expectations tend to result in disappointment, pain, and loss, so it’s better for you to have low expectations, yet continue to work hard with what you are doing.

2. Acknowledge the Change

Most of the time, people think they may not experience change at all in their life because they are expecting things to last forever, but little do they know that change is always waiting to take place and can happen at any point in time. Acknowledging change means you’re fully aware of the situation and this will help when change occurs and you move from the stage of shock to acceptance.

“It is not the strongest or the most intelligent who will survive but those who can best manage change.” – Charles Darwin

3. Accept the Change

The acceptance of change can be difficult and you might resist it at first, but you need to understand the fact that accepting the change will help you make the necessary adjustments that you need in your life. Preventing and stopping the change from happening can prove to be disastrous for you because you are rejecting the fact that the situation has changed and are still living in the past.

Things turn out to be different from the way you expected them to be and this is completely  fine because you will be able to deal with the change more effectively by embracing the new situation.

4. Learn from Your Past

Once you accept the change and are ready to embrace it, it will start making sense and you will find lessons from which you can learn a lot. It is important to learn from your previous mistakes because learning and moving on eliminates the probability of you making those mistakes again in future.

5. Grow Stronger than Before

Accepting, embracing and learning from the change makes you stronger and better than you were in the past. The ability to learn from your past makes you a better person who is able to deal with the changes more easily and is able to move on without having any regrets in life. Moreover, this change will take away the fear of making new adjustments in life.

“Embrace uncertainty. Some of the most beautiful chapters in our lives won’t have a title until much later.” – Bob Goff

6. Acknowledge the Wisdom and Embrace it

The more you permit change to happen in your life, the better you grow as an individual. Embracing the wisdom will bring new found energy and strength into your life with inner peace and calmness. Embracing the change proactively and accepting it as a part of your life will result in you being calmer and stronger than ever. Change is not your enemy but the greatest teacher from whom you will learn most of your life lessons.

It is worth mentioning that during the process of accepting change, you need to be brutally honest with yourself because most people are in denial and fail to realize the real reason behind the change. It is insane to repeat the same mistakes again and again with the expectations of a different result. So, if you do not learn from your mistakes, you are doomed to fail again.

Failure can find you again, but if the situation is different from the previous one, then it’s just another experience. You need to stand up after you fall since you cannot stop problems from occurring in your life. What you can do is handle them in a more strategic way.

Problems are a part of your journey, however, the important thing is to keep your eyes on the final destination. Once you reach your final destination, you will realize that all those problems you faced were totally worth the success.

Failure is the one who falls and never stands back up. When you stand back up and keep on trying to achieve what you want, you’re not a failure but a winner in life. So, never lose hope and always look for the positive side, even in the toughest of situations because this is what successful people do.

How do you embrace change and keep pushing forward in life? Let us know in the comments below!

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Success Advice

5 Simple Ways to Supercharge Your Happiness

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With so many demands on our time, energy, wallet from work, family and friends, figuring out what makes you happy and going after it can be a challenge. If you don’t prioritize your happiness, nobody else will. These five simple hacks will help you supercharge your happiness so you can avoid burnout, overwhelm, and going to that second cousin twice removed’s barbeque just because you “should.”

1. Schedule plenty of YOU time into your week

Let’s face it, most of our lives revolve around other people. Work, friends, spouses and partners, family, etc., the majority of our day requires us to interact with other people and that can be really exhausting. It’s important to schedule at least an hour a day – and more if you can – of YOU time into your calendar to take care of yourself.

Doing things that you enjoy, whether that’s listening to a podcast, reading, or working out, and doing them alone allows you to reconnect to who you are and have something positive to look forward to every single day.

“Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.” – Ludwig Jacobowski

2. Make “no” the most important word in your vocabulary

Making other people happy is something that we all want. It feels good to help someone out or make their lives easier. The problem is that we often sacrifice our own well-being when we say “yes” too much, especially for opportunities, work, or interactions that don’t personally fulfill us.

So whether it’s with friends, co-workers, or colleagues, learning to say no not only increases your productivity, but also your quality of life. When you set clear boundaries for the things that you don’t want and won’t accept, it leaves more room for the people and experiences that do make you happy. And remember: You don’t owe anyone an explanation if you say no to them.

3. Create a “shake the day off” routine

Even the happiest people go through stressful periods. One of the biggest issues that leads to serial unhappiness, burnout, and chronic stress is not having a release to clear out the stress that’s built up over the course of the day.

So once you’ve closed your laptop or walked through the door, it’s important to have a routine that you do that helps you get everything you’ve been bottling up off your chest. Whether that’s playing loud music and ranting for 10 minutes, spending 20 minutes with a partner where you both get to talk about the stresses of the day, or just putting on your favorite playlist and dancing it out, it’s crucial to give your mind and your body the opportunity to let go of stress on a consistent basis.

Having a place to channel negative emotion at the end of the day will help you move through the emotions, honor them, and not dwell on them incessantly. And if you had an absolutely amazing day, flip your routine on its head – spend 10 minutes celebrating.

4. Do a closet purge

Our closets hold a lot of memories – good and bad, and they tend to be where we hoard a lot of emotional baggage, both metaphorically and literally. Go through your closet and find your favorite outfits that you wear currently, whether it’s sweatpants and a t-shirt or a really well-tailored outfit, that’s your starting point.

Everything in your closet and drawers should make you feel that amazing. So get rid of any clothes that are too big or too small, any emotionally-charged pieces of clothing (for example, if you’ve still got your wedding outfit after a divorce, donate it), or anything that doesn’t represent who you are.

Your style is an opportunity to make a statement about who you are and the clothes you wear should boost your mood. Even if you’re a minimalist, you should be proud of the quality of your pieces and how they fit.

“Success is getting what you want. Happiness is wanting what you get.” – Dale Carnegie

5. Get up close and personal with your bank account every day

Money doesn’t buy happiness, but it does give you options. So many people have a fear of money and they avoid it like the plague. Checking their bank balance is their least favorite to do, they hate paying bills, and they avoid opening mail or screen phone calls to make sure it’s not the bank.

Facing the reality of your money situation, whether it needs fixing or it’s great, will only help you improve it. You can also seek the advice of a financial planner at your bank to help you with this and create a plan to shift your situation. You might have more options available than you know.

Getting clear about the gap between your spending and your income can help push you to start looking for that job or new opportunity that you’ve been procrastinating on. Tracking your finances on a daily or weekly basis can help you come up with creative solutions to make more money and provide yourself with more options for financial freedom.

Maybe you’re paying for cable, Netflix, and Hulu, but it’d be more cost effective to just get Netflix and HBO Go because that’s all you ever watch anyways. You’ll never know where more options are hiding until you get up close and personal with the reality of your financial situation.

Comment below with the happiness-boosting tip that you’ll be implementing today!

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Success Advice

5 Goal-Setting Myths That Are Busted Once and for All

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Brian Tracy said it a long time ago “People with clear, written goals accomplish far more in a shorter period of time than people without them can ever imagine.” Today, it’s scientifically proven that people with goals are more successful.  

Why? Because, setting goals will drive you to take action. Having clearly defined goals is like having a GPS System leading the way. But to be led, first you have to know where you want to go. And let’s be honest the vast majority of us don’t have even the slightest idea of where to start to make our dreams come true.

If you decide to join the 3% to 5% of people who set daily, weekly and quarterly goals, take it one step at a time and remain flexible, then over time, you can achieve things that you couldn’t even imagine before.

Lets start by busting 5 goal-setting myths:

1. Your goals have to be S.M.A.R.T.

Not true. It might be better to have smart goals, but simply having goals and writing them down already sets you apart from around 97% of people who don’t have them. My first goal which was starting my whole process about five years ago was to read more. Not a smart goal because it was not specific, measurable, or time-bound, but enough for a start. I went from not reading any books in five years to reading one book per week.

My five-year goal was “Write a book.” Again not a smart goal, but 4 1/2 years later I’m a bestselling author with more than 180,000 sales and downloads on Amazon, my books have been translated into Japanese, Korean, Spanish, German, Portuguese, Indonesian, etc. and I’m currently working on my seventh book. This is proof your goals don’t have to be SMART.

“The trouble with not having a goal is that you can spend your life running up and down the field and never score.” – Bill Copeland

2. You have to set realistic goals

What is realistic? If I had told people a couple of years ago: “In two years I’m going to be a bestselling author, I’m going to be on TV, radio, and my books will be read around the world”, chances are I’d rather have ended up in a madhouse than on the Amazon Bestseller list.

So it depends. If you tend to beat yourself up for not reaching your goals, then I would advise you to set smaller, more realistic goals. For example, if you set the goal of earning $100,000 USD a year and end up earning $97,000 USD and then beat yourself up feeling like a failure, I recommend you to set small, realistic goals.

If you are like me and always celebrate how far you have come even if you didn’t reach your goals, then set huge unrealistic goals. You want to earn $150,000 USD a year? Great, but if you only get to $50,000 USD in the first year, celebrate it. It’s better than $40,000. Analyze what went wrong, make a new plan and go for the $150,000 USD next year.

3. You have to reach all your goals

Actually, you don’t. I dare to bet that if you reach 50% of the goals you set, your life will be so much better, than not setting goals at all. Again, this depends on your personality. If you are a perfectionist, you might want to learn this kind of approach. In the last two years, I have only reached 40-50% of my goals, but it was by far the two best years of my life. I celebrated the goals I reached, and the goals I didn’t reach were discarded or turned into new goals for next year.

4. Reaching your goals will make you happier

Again, not true. Reaching your goals will not make you happier. It will only give you temporary highs before you go back to your base-level of happiness and set new goals. Goals properly understood will make you happier. It’s not the attaining of the goal that leads to happiness, it’s the having of the goal that leads to happiness. The role of your goals is to liberate us to enjoy the present.

If you go on a road trip and don’t know where to go or don’t have a destination, you are less likely to enjoy the present moment because every minute you have to look around. Every crossroads or turn you reach becomes an important decision. This is stressful. If you know where you are going, you have a sense of direction. You will feel liberated.

You are much more likely to enjoy the process, the environment, the landscape or the proverbial “flowers on the side of the way.” Not only that, if you have a clear sense of direction, you are much more likely to be happy. We need a goal for future orientation so that we can enjoy the present more

5. Having goals will make your more successful

Although science has shown that people who set goals are generally more successful, because they are more focused, having goals will not make you more successful. Many have people have goals and dreams and never reach them. They might even have written them down and try to use the “Law of Attraction” to reach their goals.

There is only one problem, nobody reaches their goals sitting on the sofa and imagining good things to happen. The most important ingredient is missing: TAKING ACTION. Having goals and working your butt off to reach them will make you more successful.

“Setting goals is the first step in turning the invisible into the visible.” – Tony Robbins

I meet many people that have no goals and are happy. That’s totally okay. There is a time for everything. If you don’t have goals and are happy…keep on not having goals. No need to change what’s working, you will know when the time comes. Just listen very closely to the “I don’t need goals. I’m happy without goals” voice because comfort and fear talk the same talk.

Keep in mind that if you want to have an even better life, go set some goals, write them down and start working on them. It will be worth it.

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Success Advice

You Don’t Have To Listen To Every Bit Of Career Feedback. Some People Just Don’t Get You And That’s Fine!

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I recently got rejected from what I thought was a fantastic career opportunity. I was told that I was “Not entrepreneurial enough.”

Those that know me well know that it’s probably one of the few things I’m good at. Many of my mentors who I told this story to laughed out loud.

These three words were career feedback and I was always led to believe that to ignore this feedback would be ignorant and stupid.

I pondered that thought for a few days and then had a revelation: “I don’t have to listen to every bit of feedback I get.”

 

Pissed off is a natural first reaction.

That’s how I felt after someone told me I was crap at the very thing I love and have dedicated most of my time to. Our brain wants to be angry and fight back. Our first reaction, though, is often not what we should pay attention to.

“Empty space and time to reflect is how we process career feedback for what it really is: an opinion”

Don’t let your first reaction dominate how you think about the feedback. Maturity that can come at any age will show you to question everything – even your reaction.

 

Some people just don’t get you.

You’re not their type, they don’t like you, you speak a different language or you may have different values. Not everyone is going to get you and what you stand for and that’s okay. In my case, I didn’t connect.

Buying into the circus that is me is not for everyone. If you don’t like vulnerability or breaking comfort zones, then you probably won’t like me.

If you’re not obsessed with big goals, doing the impossible and trying to improve just a little bit every day, then you probably won’t like me.

That’s okay and I forgive you. I don’t have all the answers and I’m far from perfect – like the rest of us.

Learn to accept that some people will never get you and what you’re about.

That realization is how we overcome career feedback that we may not agree with.

 

Sometimes it’s any excuse. The real answer is something different.

Feedback can be disguised by the truth. The truth is maybe there was someone else the whole time and I never had a chance at this career opportunity. Maybe it wasn’t me at all.

Sometimes feedback is given because the real reason is much harder to deliver. It’s not easy to say “Tim, thanks but we hired someone else and you were never in the running.”

Admitting you never even had a chance is something many of us would never want to say. Being brutally honest takes courage, and courage is not everyone’s kind of kebab with garlic sauce on top, sprinkles and chili flakes.

 

We all get rejected.

I nearly forgot this fact. Everyone gets rejected. In fact, right now, someone is being rejected.

Rejection is not limited to you and me; learning to deal with it will only help us, not hinder our ability to achieve success in any field.

“We’ve all got 99 problems and thinking you’re special will only create more pointless thoughts that won’t serve you or your goals”

 

You’re responsible.

The thing about career feedback is that you have to take responsibility. Maybe in my case, I didn’t deliver the message of how obsessed and skilled I am at entrepreneurship. Maybe I could have done a better job at explaining my entrepreneurial background and passion.

It’s highly likely that I am entrepreneurial enough for this career opportunity and that it’s not a lack of skill at play here but a lack of effective communication.

“Responsibility always trumps the blame game and it helps us grow more as a person”

 

There’s always one lesson.

Mine was to develop more skills in strategy.

Let’s stop for one second: I hate the word strategy. The other career feedback I got was to do more strategy yet that’s not a skill of mine and I have no desire to do lots of that in my career.

The key here is that there’s always a lesson from all feedback and it might not be the intended lesson that the giver left you with.

There’s either a great lesson in the feedback or a reminder in the feedback of what you stand for. Don’t let any feedback compromise your values and who you are.

 

You are good enough.

You just have to believe in yourself and eventually, the right opportunity will find you.

Don’t give up your hopes and dreams because of one rejection. Interrupt the story in your head that plays on repeat and focuses on anger towards another person.

Replace that story with thoughts of how you can do better and get to the next opportunity.

Through rejection and bad career feedback, you find your way to what you’ve always wanted. That’s the hack and it works.

I’m off to suck up the rejection and take my own advice. Much respect.

If you want to increase your productivity and learn some more valuable life hacks, then join my private mailing list on timdenning.net

Tim is best known as a long-time contributor on Addicted2Success. Tim's content has been shared hundreds of thousands of times and he has written multiple viral posts all around success, personal development, motivation, and entrepreneurship. During the day Tim works with the most iconic tech companies in the world, as an adviser, to assist them in expanding into Australia. By night, Tim coaches his students on the principles of personal development and the fundamentals of entrepreneurship. You can connect with Tim through his website www.timdenning.net or through his Facebook.

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15 Comments

15 Comments

  1. Praveen Regmi

    Jan 11, 2016 at 4:38 am

    I found the term goal setting too confusing previously. This gave a great insight. Definitely helpful for me. Thanks a lot Tim.

    • Tim Denning

      Jan 11, 2016 at 10:20 am

      Praveen I am glad the article was helpful for you. Thanks for reading!

  2. Wes Graham

    Jan 7, 2016 at 6:24 pm

    Thank you for such a wise and alturistic coontribution. I was going to list the wonderful portions of your content, but it was too long. Everything you contribute is a blessing to me and obviously others as well. I am new to goal setting and have only generally had goals and met them with great success and not so great. I have read a couple of goal setting specific books and systems, but your six easy steps clearly are game changing. You clearly are an asset to your clients and those who are fortunate enough to have come across your free content.

    Thank you, Tim. You have blessed me considerably. I know now that I don’t have to read much more, or search for a system or tool to attain my goals in a game-changing way. I look forward to reading more and connecting with you on twitter and facebook and email.
    To your success,
    Wes Graham

    • Tim Denning

      Jan 9, 2016 at 1:37 am

      Wes thank you for your very generous comments I don;t think anyone has been that positive about my work so far. There loads of books on goals but I find they are over-complicated. I hope these steps will help you to reach the success you deserve. Thanks again for reading.

  3. Emna

    Jan 7, 2016 at 8:27 am

    Great post. Thank you.

    • Tim Denning

      Jan 9, 2016 at 1:38 am

      Cheers Emma.

  4. Addicted 2 The Grind

    Jan 6, 2016 at 9:32 pm

    Tim this is another great read

    • Tim Denning

      Jan 7, 2016 at 8:12 am

      Thanks guys!

  5. Peter

    Jan 6, 2016 at 4:07 am

    Thank you for another fine article.

    I stopped using the term “deadline” years ago. To me it’s a very negative and depressing term. I like to stay positive, and so I set “goal times” instead of “deadlines”.

    Best wishes

    • Tim Denning

      Jan 6, 2016 at 7:25 am

      Cheers Peter for the nice words. I agree about the word deadline although I still use it on some rare occasions 🙂

  6. Toño

    Jan 6, 2016 at 3:27 am

    This very article is incredibly right on time for me, once again. I think the law of attraction somehow works here, as one of the youtubers I watch love to say, ‘your vibe attract your tribe’!

    I have set, and eventually achieved goals just at edge of the year and was very delighted & satisfied. I did move into a new place and paid all my debts, and my job is constantly improving as well as my attitude towards it. Howevere for the last few days I felt empty inside, like something was missing. I realized it is so called ‘post-achivement’ syndrome when after you got what you wanted you feel depressed. So now I need new goals to pursue. Goals, that will drives me to better version of myself.

    But for the last year I thought about goals setting in a different way. More often I felt huge pressure instead of inspiration by writting them off and you said it quite precisely, it’s been talked and thought about way too much and more you think of that process, more overwhelmed you become. I smiled at your line here ‘.. and for anyone like me who constantly gets distracted ..’ as it’s the same with me. I still working on my ability to focus, but reading Tony Robbins ‘Awaken the Giant Within’ has helped me find a ground.

    Thus, back to setting your goals, I think it is necessary, it may be or feel like that, but I begin to like the idea to go with the flow, naturally. You will need attributes to do so, like discipline, courage, your morning/daily routine, passion, motivation and clear idea (I like your quote in the picture by the way!) or at least to follow passion (and if you don’t have one – keep looking). I think, once again, you need to find a balance here, because there moments in your life when you just have to let it all go and be yourself, live your life and enjoy the very present moment, because not a single one of us guaranteed to have tomorrow. What do you think of it, Tim?

    Oh, and your last point about benefits of accountability and telling key people (or just good people, or all people) is actually pretty awesome. I’ve never thought about it that way as I love to keep my dreams and goals to myself, but hey, you cannot control everything, right? I love the idea to allow the universe work for you by telling your goals which may help to attract the exact circumstances and help you on your journey. That is just wonderful! Yesterday I shared some of ideas with people around me and it felt good.

    Thank you so much once again Tim, I enjoyed this morning reading and get my mind stretched and ready for the new and awesome day, my appreciation for your work and passion!

    ps: one more thing, I wake up today still under impression of movie you suggested, ‘The Blind Side’. Watched it last night and was speechless for a while. It touched so many aspects withing me that I barely had all my attention to think about all of it. Such inspiriational movie that gave me something I cannot explain yet. I going yo follow your advise and watch those movies you talked about in this article, as I am quite passionate about it. I am very grateful!

    Have a great day and stay well!

    • Tim Denning

      Jan 6, 2016 at 7:25 am

      Toño great to hear from you as always. Congrats on getting your life back together. You have come so far since you initially started some of the articles I posted so congrats. In relation to goals, I am in the same space as you and needing to challenge myself. That’s why I am going to learn the art of public speaking so wish me luck!

      I think you are spot on about living in the moment and you are clearly doing that my friend. Glad you watched The Blind Side it’s one of my favourite movies. Everyone I have told to watch it has said the same thing as you.

      Keep doing what you’re doing and been inspired. You will get where you want to go I am sure of it.

      • Toño

        Jan 7, 2016 at 3:09 am

        Thank you, Tim, it is always a pleasure to read your replies. I am still far away from the dream life I desire and lots of work ahead. I am still having my high & lows every day and my life is like rollercoaster. But sometimes I think I just cannot be satisfied and always want more..

        The art of public speaking is a great carft and actually I would love to hear from you one day your message, your pasion and your ideas, so I wish you all the good luck to achieve it! Even though I think we create our own luck, some magic help from the Universe will be beneficial 🙂

        Thank you for all kind words and support, I appreciate it greatly and it means a lot as additional motivation for me!

  7. Naman Kumar

    Jan 5, 2016 at 10:10 am

    Great article.
    Thanks for explaining and sharing the way one can fix up his goals in a better way.

    • Tim Denning

      Jan 5, 2016 at 9:12 pm

      No problem Naman. Hopefully there are a few tools you can use when writing your own goals. Cheers

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Success Advice

You Don’t Have To Listen To Every Bit Of Career Feedback. Some People Just Don’t Get You And That’s Fine!

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I recently got rejected from what I thought was a fantastic career opportunity. I was told that I was “Not entrepreneurial enough.”

Those that know me well know that it’s probably one of the few things I’m good at. Many of my mentors who I told this story to laughed out loud.

These three words were career feedback and I was always led to believe that to ignore this feedback would be ignorant and stupid.

I pondered that thought for a few days and then had a revelation: “I don’t have to listen to every bit of feedback I get.”

 

Pissed off is a natural first reaction.

That’s how I felt after someone told me I was crap at the very thing I love and have dedicated most of my time to. Our brain wants to be angry and fight back. Our first reaction, though, is often not what we should pay attention to.

“Empty space and time to reflect is how we process career feedback for what it really is: an opinion”

Don’t let your first reaction dominate how you think about the feedback. Maturity that can come at any age will show you to question everything – even your reaction.

 

Some people just don’t get you.

You’re not their type, they don’t like you, you speak a different language or you may have different values. Not everyone is going to get you and what you stand for and that’s okay. In my case, I didn’t connect.

Buying into the circus that is me is not for everyone. If you don’t like vulnerability or breaking comfort zones, then you probably won’t like me.

If you’re not obsessed with big goals, doing the impossible and trying to improve just a little bit every day, then you probably won’t like me.

That’s okay and I forgive you. I don’t have all the answers and I’m far from perfect – like the rest of us.

Learn to accept that some people will never get you and what you’re about.

That realization is how we overcome career feedback that we may not agree with.

 

Sometimes it’s any excuse. The real answer is something different.

Feedback can be disguised by the truth. The truth is maybe there was someone else the whole time and I never had a chance at this career opportunity. Maybe it wasn’t me at all.

Sometimes feedback is given because the real reason is much harder to deliver. It’s not easy to say “Tim, thanks but we hired someone else and you were never in the running.”

Admitting you never even had a chance is something many of us would never want to say. Being brutally honest takes courage, and courage is not everyone’s kind of kebab with garlic sauce on top, sprinkles and chili flakes.

 

We all get rejected.

I nearly forgot this fact. Everyone gets rejected. In fact, right now, someone is being rejected.

Rejection is not limited to you and me; learning to deal with it will only help us, not hinder our ability to achieve success in any field.

“We’ve all got 99 problems and thinking you’re special will only create more pointless thoughts that won’t serve you or your goals”

 

You’re responsible.

The thing about career feedback is that you have to take responsibility. Maybe in my case, I didn’t deliver the message of how obsessed and skilled I am at entrepreneurship. Maybe I could have done a better job at explaining my entrepreneurial background and passion.

It’s highly likely that I am entrepreneurial enough for this career opportunity and that it’s not a lack of skill at play here but a lack of effective communication.

“Responsibility always trumps the blame game and it helps us grow more as a person”

 

There’s always one lesson.

Mine was to develop more skills in strategy.

Let’s stop for one second: I hate the word strategy. The other career feedback I got was to do more strategy yet that’s not a skill of mine and I have no desire to do lots of that in my career.

The key here is that there’s always a lesson from all feedback and it might not be the intended lesson that the giver left you with.

There’s either a great lesson in the feedback or a reminder in the feedback of what you stand for. Don’t let any feedback compromise your values and who you are.

 

You are good enough.

You just have to believe in yourself and eventually, the right opportunity will find you.

Don’t give up your hopes and dreams because of one rejection. Interrupt the story in your head that plays on repeat and focuses on anger towards another person.

Replace that story with thoughts of how you can do better and get to the next opportunity.

Through rejection and bad career feedback, you find your way to what you’ve always wanted. That’s the hack and it works.

I’m off to suck up the rejection and take my own advice. Much respect.

If you want to increase your productivity and learn some more valuable life hacks, then join my private mailing list on timdenning.net

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Success Advice

6 Important Lessons That Will Lead You to Success

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success

Failure is a part of life and it’s nothing to be ashamed of because the most highly successful people are the ones who have experienced failures the most in their life. The general public usually learns about people and their work when they become successful but only a handful of people know about the immense struggles that those people have gone through. Unfortunately, we do not have the stories of their failures to which we can relate our own setbacks and this is why we perceive failure to be a bad thing.

People are afraid of failure because, from a very young age, they are taught that making mistakes and being wrong is a bad thing so when a person suffers from a failure, it’s possible for that person to experience some form of depression. It is important for you to understand failure is a way for you to learn and move on from the experience. It is literally impossible to live life forever without failing at something, unless you live your life so carefully that you forget to live at all.

Here are 6 lessons that you should embrace that will change in your life:

1. Keep Your Expectations Low

When it comes to life, people often expect things like family, business, and marriage to be constant and consistent throughout the years. However, this is not the case because life is not that simple and there are always ups and downs which you need to confront.

Having low expectations is totally understandable and justifiable but having high expectations from relationships and businesses could prove to be harmful if those things don’t last forever. In addition to this, keeping your expectations low helps you accept whatever comes from the situation. High expectations tend to result in disappointment, pain, and loss, so it’s better for you to have low expectations, yet continue to work hard with what you are doing.

2. Acknowledge the Change

Most of the time, people think they may not experience change at all in their life because they are expecting things to last forever, but little do they know that change is always waiting to take place and can happen at any point in time. Acknowledging change means you’re fully aware of the situation and this will help when change occurs and you move from the stage of shock to acceptance.

“It is not the strongest or the most intelligent who will survive but those who can best manage change.” – Charles Darwin

3. Accept the Change

The acceptance of change can be difficult and you might resist it at first, but you need to understand the fact that accepting the change will help you make the necessary adjustments that you need in your life. Preventing and stopping the change from happening can prove to be disastrous for you because you are rejecting the fact that the situation has changed and are still living in the past.

Things turn out to be different from the way you expected them to be and this is completely  fine because you will be able to deal with the change more effectively by embracing the new situation.

4. Learn from Your Past

Once you accept the change and are ready to embrace it, it will start making sense and you will find lessons from which you can learn a lot. It is important to learn from your previous mistakes because learning and moving on eliminates the probability of you making those mistakes again in future.

5. Grow Stronger than Before

Accepting, embracing and learning from the change makes you stronger and better than you were in the past. The ability to learn from your past makes you a better person who is able to deal with the changes more easily and is able to move on without having any regrets in life. Moreover, this change will take away the fear of making new adjustments in life.

“Embrace uncertainty. Some of the most beautiful chapters in our lives won’t have a title until much later.” – Bob Goff

6. Acknowledge the Wisdom and Embrace it

The more you permit change to happen in your life, the better you grow as an individual. Embracing the wisdom will bring new found energy and strength into your life with inner peace and calmness. Embracing the change proactively and accepting it as a part of your life will result in you being calmer and stronger than ever. Change is not your enemy but the greatest teacher from whom you will learn most of your life lessons.

It is worth mentioning that during the process of accepting change, you need to be brutally honest with yourself because most people are in denial and fail to realize the real reason behind the change. It is insane to repeat the same mistakes again and again with the expectations of a different result. So, if you do not learn from your mistakes, you are doomed to fail again.

Failure can find you again, but if the situation is different from the previous one, then it’s just another experience. You need to stand up after you fall since you cannot stop problems from occurring in your life. What you can do is handle them in a more strategic way.

Problems are a part of your journey, however, the important thing is to keep your eyes on the final destination. Once you reach your final destination, you will realize that all those problems you faced were totally worth the success.

Failure is the one who falls and never stands back up. When you stand back up and keep on trying to achieve what you want, you’re not a failure but a winner in life. So, never lose hope and always look for the positive side, even in the toughest of situations because this is what successful people do.

How do you embrace change and keep pushing forward in life? Let us know in the comments below!

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Success Advice

5 Simple Ways to Supercharge Your Happiness

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happiness

With so many demands on our time, energy, wallet from work, family and friends, figuring out what makes you happy and going after it can be a challenge. If you don’t prioritize your happiness, nobody else will. These five simple hacks will help you supercharge your happiness so you can avoid burnout, overwhelm, and going to that second cousin twice removed’s barbeque just because you “should.”

1. Schedule plenty of YOU time into your week

Let’s face it, most of our lives revolve around other people. Work, friends, spouses and partners, family, etc., the majority of our day requires us to interact with other people and that can be really exhausting. It’s important to schedule at least an hour a day – and more if you can – of YOU time into your calendar to take care of yourself.

Doing things that you enjoy, whether that’s listening to a podcast, reading, or working out, and doing them alone allows you to reconnect to who you are and have something positive to look forward to every single day.

“Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.” – Ludwig Jacobowski

2. Make “no” the most important word in your vocabulary

Making other people happy is something that we all want. It feels good to help someone out or make their lives easier. The problem is that we often sacrifice our own well-being when we say “yes” too much, especially for opportunities, work, or interactions that don’t personally fulfill us.

So whether it’s with friends, co-workers, or colleagues, learning to say no not only increases your productivity, but also your quality of life. When you set clear boundaries for the things that you don’t want and won’t accept, it leaves more room for the people and experiences that do make you happy. And remember: You don’t owe anyone an explanation if you say no to them.

3. Create a “shake the day off” routine

Even the happiest people go through stressful periods. One of the biggest issues that leads to serial unhappiness, burnout, and chronic stress is not having a release to clear out the stress that’s built up over the course of the day.

So once you’ve closed your laptop or walked through the door, it’s important to have a routine that you do that helps you get everything you’ve been bottling up off your chest. Whether that’s playing loud music and ranting for 10 minutes, spending 20 minutes with a partner where you both get to talk about the stresses of the day, or just putting on your favorite playlist and dancing it out, it’s crucial to give your mind and your body the opportunity to let go of stress on a consistent basis.

Having a place to channel negative emotion at the end of the day will help you move through the emotions, honor them, and not dwell on them incessantly. And if you had an absolutely amazing day, flip your routine on its head – spend 10 minutes celebrating.

4. Do a closet purge

Our closets hold a lot of memories – good and bad, and they tend to be where we hoard a lot of emotional baggage, both metaphorically and literally. Go through your closet and find your favorite outfits that you wear currently, whether it’s sweatpants and a t-shirt or a really well-tailored outfit, that’s your starting point.

Everything in your closet and drawers should make you feel that amazing. So get rid of any clothes that are too big or too small, any emotionally-charged pieces of clothing (for example, if you’ve still got your wedding outfit after a divorce, donate it), or anything that doesn’t represent who you are.

Your style is an opportunity to make a statement about who you are and the clothes you wear should boost your mood. Even if you’re a minimalist, you should be proud of the quality of your pieces and how they fit.

“Success is getting what you want. Happiness is wanting what you get.” – Dale Carnegie

5. Get up close and personal with your bank account every day

Money doesn’t buy happiness, but it does give you options. So many people have a fear of money and they avoid it like the plague. Checking their bank balance is their least favorite to do, they hate paying bills, and they avoid opening mail or screen phone calls to make sure it’s not the bank.

Facing the reality of your money situation, whether it needs fixing or it’s great, will only help you improve it. You can also seek the advice of a financial planner at your bank to help you with this and create a plan to shift your situation. You might have more options available than you know.

Getting clear about the gap between your spending and your income can help push you to start looking for that job or new opportunity that you’ve been procrastinating on. Tracking your finances on a daily or weekly basis can help you come up with creative solutions to make more money and provide yourself with more options for financial freedom.

Maybe you’re paying for cable, Netflix, and Hulu, but it’d be more cost effective to just get Netflix and HBO Go because that’s all you ever watch anyways. You’ll never know where more options are hiding until you get up close and personal with the reality of your financial situation.

Comment below with the happiness-boosting tip that you’ll be implementing today!

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Success Advice

5 Goal-Setting Myths That Are Busted Once and for All

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goal setting myths

Brian Tracy said it a long time ago “People with clear, written goals accomplish far more in a shorter period of time than people without them can ever imagine.” Today, it’s scientifically proven that people with goals are more successful.  

Why? Because, setting goals will drive you to take action. Having clearly defined goals is like having a GPS System leading the way. But to be led, first you have to know where you want to go. And let’s be honest the vast majority of us don’t have even the slightest idea of where to start to make our dreams come true.

If you decide to join the 3% to 5% of people who set daily, weekly and quarterly goals, take it one step at a time and remain flexible, then over time, you can achieve things that you couldn’t even imagine before.

Lets start by busting 5 goal-setting myths:

1. Your goals have to be S.M.A.R.T.

Not true. It might be better to have smart goals, but simply having goals and writing them down already sets you apart from around 97% of people who don’t have them. My first goal which was starting my whole process about five years ago was to read more. Not a smart goal because it was not specific, measurable, or time-bound, but enough for a start. I went from not reading any books in five years to reading one book per week.

My five-year goal was “Write a book.” Again not a smart goal, but 4 1/2 years later I’m a bestselling author with more than 180,000 sales and downloads on Amazon, my books have been translated into Japanese, Korean, Spanish, German, Portuguese, Indonesian, etc. and I’m currently working on my seventh book. This is proof your goals don’t have to be SMART.

“The trouble with not having a goal is that you can spend your life running up and down the field and never score.” – Bill Copeland

2. You have to set realistic goals

What is realistic? If I had told people a couple of years ago: “In two years I’m going to be a bestselling author, I’m going to be on TV, radio, and my books will be read around the world”, chances are I’d rather have ended up in a madhouse than on the Amazon Bestseller list.

So it depends. If you tend to beat yourself up for not reaching your goals, then I would advise you to set smaller, more realistic goals. For example, if you set the goal of earning $100,000 USD a year and end up earning $97,000 USD and then beat yourself up feeling like a failure, I recommend you to set small, realistic goals.

If you are like me and always celebrate how far you have come even if you didn’t reach your goals, then set huge unrealistic goals. You want to earn $150,000 USD a year? Great, but if you only get to $50,000 USD in the first year, celebrate it. It’s better than $40,000. Analyze what went wrong, make a new plan and go for the $150,000 USD next year.

3. You have to reach all your goals

Actually, you don’t. I dare to bet that if you reach 50% of the goals you set, your life will be so much better, than not setting goals at all. Again, this depends on your personality. If you are a perfectionist, you might want to learn this kind of approach. In the last two years, I have only reached 40-50% of my goals, but it was by far the two best years of my life. I celebrated the goals I reached, and the goals I didn’t reach were discarded or turned into new goals for next year.

4. Reaching your goals will make you happier

Again, not true. Reaching your goals will not make you happier. It will only give you temporary highs before you go back to your base-level of happiness and set new goals. Goals properly understood will make you happier. It’s not the attaining of the goal that leads to happiness, it’s the having of the goal that leads to happiness. The role of your goals is to liberate us to enjoy the present.

If you go on a road trip and don’t know where to go or don’t have a destination, you are less likely to enjoy the present moment because every minute you have to look around. Every crossroads or turn you reach becomes an important decision. This is stressful. If you know where you are going, you have a sense of direction. You will feel liberated.

You are much more likely to enjoy the process, the environment, the landscape or the proverbial “flowers on the side of the way.” Not only that, if you have a clear sense of direction, you are much more likely to be happy. We need a goal for future orientation so that we can enjoy the present more

5. Having goals will make your more successful

Although science has shown that people who set goals are generally more successful, because they are more focused, having goals will not make you more successful. Many have people have goals and dreams and never reach them. They might even have written them down and try to use the “Law of Attraction” to reach their goals.

There is only one problem, nobody reaches their goals sitting on the sofa and imagining good things to happen. The most important ingredient is missing: TAKING ACTION. Having goals and working your butt off to reach them will make you more successful.

“Setting goals is the first step in turning the invisible into the visible.” – Tony Robbins

I meet many people that have no goals and are happy. That’s totally okay. There is a time for everything. If you don’t have goals and are happy…keep on not having goals. No need to change what’s working, you will know when the time comes. Just listen very closely to the “I don’t need goals. I’m happy without goals” voice because comfort and fear talk the same talk.

Keep in mind that if you want to have an even better life, go set some goals, write them down and start working on them. It will be worth it.

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