How to get yourself to take action towards your goal

Live Your Best Life From Jack Canfield’s Weekly Newsletter

There’s an enduring axiom of success that says,“The Universe rewards action, not thought.” Yet as simple as this principle seems, it’s surprising how many people get bogged down in the analyzing, planning and organizing stages when what they really need to do is to simply take action.

“What we think or what we know or what we believe is, in the end, of little consequence. The only consequence is what we do.” – John Ruskin

When you take action, not only do additional resources come your way, but you get feedback that helps you adjust your course and refine your approach.

In my seminars, I conduct a very illustrative exercise. I hold up a $100 bill and ask participants if any of them would like to have it. I stand in front of the room, and wait until they “get it.”

Usually, after several seconds, someone jumps out of their seat and rushes forward to pluck the $100 bill out of my hand. I then tell the rest of the audience that they, too, could have been the one to get the money if only they had taken action.

The Importance of Taking Action

The truth is, while most of us know a lot about earning money, making things happen and bringing about change in the world, only a surprising few get to have all the abundance, glory and satisfaction this world has to offer—simply because they are the select few who consistently take action.

Taking action is the one thing that separates the winners from the non-winners…the haves from the have-nots…and the high achievers from the everyday people.

Perhaps you’ve already seen someone create a big win in their life, only to grumble to yourself, I could have done that. Or perhaps you’ve watched as a co-worker launched a new project that included your ideas—only to conclude that you stood by while they took action.

How to Start Taking Action

The simple fact remains that, in life, we are not rewarded for what we know, but for what we do.

Of course, many people don’t take action because they’re fearful of the consequences.

Perhaps they feel they don’t have permission or perhaps they’re more afraid of failure than they are of success.

Successful people realize that failure is an important part of the learning process. They know that failure is just a way we learn by trial an error. Not only do we need to stop being so afraid of failure, we need to be willing to fail. I call this kind of instructive failure “failing forward.”

Simply get started, make mistakes, listen to the feedback, correct and keep moving forward toward the goal.

Of course, one major benefit of taking action is that it’s a key factor in putting The Law of Attraction to work in your life.

Step 1: You have to ask for what you want.

Step 2: You have to believe it will come about

Step 3: You have to create a vibrational or emotional match in order to receive the results when they come your way.

When you’re in action—doing research, connecting with people, finding ways to accomplish a goal—you are sending a powerful signal to the Universe that you expect and anticipate meeting that goal or enjoying that experience soon.

After all, you wouldn’t be doing all that work if you didn’t expect to be living that new life sometime soon, would you?

How to Learn to Take Action: The Rule of 5

A powerful strategy to get you in action and keep you in action is something I call The Rule of 5 .

Here it is:

Every day, do five things that will move you closer to your goal – 5 concrete action steps.

If you’re self-employed, do five things to grow your business.

If you want a promotion at your job, do five things a day to improve your skills and knowledge so you’ll be eligible to be promoted.

Even if you accomplish just 5 things each week, that’s more than most people do in a month to achieve their dreams.

I remember back when I was building my speaking career, I would send 5 letters a day to school districts and program directors for educator conferences for teachers, counselors and school administrators.

And later, when Chicken Soup for the Soul was published, I would send out 5 books a day to companies who could hire me to speak at their next industry event or sales meeting.

Practice your “5 Things a Day” habit and after three weeks – not only will you have taken major action toward your life goals, you will have developed a new habit of being pro-active in creating your future.

Without action, nothing happens. So to help you get into action, I want to invite you to tune in to my webcast , which will teach you how to set and accomplish your biggest goals and create the life you want. I’ll teach you how to create awareness for where you want to go, see the big picture, and create an action plan to get there.

Live Your Best Life From Jack Canfield’s Weekly Newsletter

How to get yourself to take action towards your goal

Meet Jack Canfield

For over 40 years, he has been teaching entrepreneurs, educators, corporate leaders, and people from all walks of life how to create the life they desire.

As the beloved originator of the Chicken Soup for the Soul(r) series, he’s taught millions of individuals his modernized formulas for success, and has trained and certified over 2,700 students to teach his content and methodology in 107 countries around the world.

How to get yourself to take action towards your goal

Achieving our goals is seldom easy. It’s why knowing how to stay motivated is so incredibly important when it comes to getting what we want in the long term. And in a world with more distractions than ever before — from non-stop web access to constant texting — it can be all the harder to stay focused and productive and not just give in to what’s easier in the moment.

I’ve often struggled with motivation, whether it’s been related to my career, my health, or just getting better at a hobby I enjoy. And while it’s not always the biggest deal (it’s not really all that vital that I learn to play my favorite song on the ukulele by my birthday), sometimes it really worries me. I don’t want to be filled with regret at some point down the line because I didn’t follow through on something I really wanted, and I also don’t want to feel like I failed at achieving the things that are important to me, all because I couldn’t figure out how to stay motivated.

Because this is a topic that matters to me, I delved into some pretty serious online research, as well as checked in with an expert, to find the absolute best ways to stay motivated in life. If you’re looking for ways to help yourself achieve your goals, here are 11 tips that should help.

1. Don’t Assume Money Will Motivate You

In an interview with Bustle over email, motivational trainer (plus business and life coach) Karen Strunks says, “Many people think money alone will be enough to motivate them, and whilst that may do so initially, it’s very hard to sustain financial motivation if the work you are doing actually drags. If you do that type of work for long enough you will find that no amount of money is worth swapping parts of your life in activities that aren’t aligned with who you are and what truly is your passion and mission in life.” So first things first, be true to yourself when it comes to setting goals!

2. Make Sure They’re Your Goals

And on that note, Strunks also says that, “One of the biggest challenges in staying motivated and sticking to our goals is in making sure that the goals we have set our ones we really want to attain.” She went on to note, “Sometimes we set goals based on what we think we ‘should’ do. Or we base them on what other people say.” Make sure you’re going after something that you want and that makes you happy — it can make all the difference.

3. Visualize The Results

According to a piece featured on Forbes about staying motivated, it’s important to visualize the end result and what it will feel like when you’ve achieved your end goal. This means visualizing the sweat on your back, the feeling of relief, the utter excitement — this is what will fuel you on days when you don’t feel like working.

4. Break The Goal Down Into Smaller Pieces

The same Forbes compilation piece recommended breaking your goals down into smaller, more task-oriented goals — and set target deadline for those tasks. For example. if your goal is “re-organize my entire closet,” start by saying, “First I’m going to tackle the shoes, then the belts, then the winter coats in the back,” etc. This method can make even the biggest task feel more manageable.

5. Tap Into Other People’s Energy

In a piece for Inc, small business advisor Marla Tabaka stressed the importance of surrounding yourself with positive thinkers who emanate positive energy. “Do you have people in your life who can engage in stimulating conversation about business or the other things that you’re passionate about? As human beings we give and receive energy and inspiration. Make sure you are receiving as much, or more, than you are handing out,” Tabaka wrote.

6. Get Organized

Tabaka also recommended taking time to sit down and organize your thoughts. “When I’m working on a big project, nothing zaps my energy more than an over-stimulated, cluttered mind,” she wrote. So instead, sit down and move the process from your head to an actual organized list, or talk out what you’re thinking with a trusted friend (or both). Then schedule specific times to complete each task. This is key to getting what you want.

7. Keep The Big Picture In Mind

One of my favorite YouTube personalities, Tessa Violet, stressed the importance of keeping your “top tier” goal in mind at all times, even when doing the less pleasant, more menial tasks related to it. That way, she said, “If you’re having a week where you feel like [you’re’] not motivated to do the work, you remember, ‘My goal isn’t about finishing the work. My goal is about something bigger.'”

8. Don’t Worry About What You Can’t Control

In a piece for The Huffington Post, life coach Stacia Pierce said to “take control of what you can, and don’t worry about what you can’t.” So if you often find yourself paralyzed with the “what ifs” (as in, “What if I write this and no one reads it,” “What if I don’t get accepted into the program,” etc, etc) let it go and just focus on turning out quality work.

9. Seek Out Positive Information

Pierce also recommended reading or listening to positive information every single day. “If you fill your mind with uplifting and inspiring information, it will keep you motivated. Go to the bookstore or library today and find at least one book on a positive topic that will give you a boost. You need constant reminders telling you that you are capable of achievement,” she wrote.

10. Remind Yourself Why You Set The Goal

In a piece for Tiny Buddha, integrated channeler Maria Moraca said that when things feel overwhelming, just take a few moments to sit back and remind yourself why you chose your path in the first place. Was it to help people? Was it because you knew your end goal would lead to long term happiness, even if it was short term work? This can always help you find clarity in the worst moments.

11. Be Consistent

And finally, Strunks also stressed the importance of being consistent with your work, writing, “take consistent action every single day.” This means that even if you’re totally not in the mood, do one small proactive thing that will move you towards your ultimate goal — even if it’s just a tweet.

Staying motivated is absolutely within your reach — it’s often just about keeping your end goal in mind and breaking down the larger end result into manageable smaller steps. Remember — you can do it!

This article was originally published on July 20, 2016

How to get yourself to take action towards your goalWhat stops you from taking action?

Is it overwhelm, fear of failure, anxiety, and a host of of blocks, thoughts, and feelings?

How interested would you be in learning a way to effortlessly take action despite them?

When you implement what you are about to learn, you will dramatically reduce your “procrastination time.”

You won’t suddenly become a productivity machine, but you might, because you never know, right?

The simple secret to taking massive action is so simple that you may end up laughing when you discover what it is, but it truly works.

And you will discover exactly what I’m talking about when you use it in your own life.

Looking Into Your Future

When I stop myself from taking action, I look into the future. I try to plan and predict what’s going to happen, and not happen. What I need to do, and not do.

I’m sure you know where that thought process leads, don’t you?

There’s nothing but overwhelm, fear, and anxiety when I go down that path. Even though I know what I’m about to share with you in this article, I still fall into the trap of overwhelm and scaring myself.

What you may not realize, if you’re really good at overwhelming yourself, is that as you take action, you learn and grow.

This means that you cannot effectively plan ahead, because the wiser you become, the more different your future decisions become. You begin to look at things from a whole new perspective.

And this is why going with the flow, trusting your heart, and taking action is so powerful. When you move forward, the pieces of the puzzle fall into place when they need to, and with each piece, you see more and more of the bigger picture.

You don’t have to know everything to know enough.

Setting a goal is all well and good, but it should never stop you from taking action.

The goal is there so you have something to aim at, but you always want to be thinking about what you can do now.

How to Effortlessly Take Action

With all that said, let’s take a look at how you can start to take action right away, shall we?

The secret is asking yourself the following question: What is the next smallest step that I can take, right now?

You don’t have to plan everything, although sometimes it’s helpful, but when it’s not is when it isn’t moving you forward.

We’ve been taught that we need to eliminate uncertainty, but what you may not realize is that without uncertainty, possibility cannot exist.

So if you’ve been planning, and trying to avoid mistakes that you haven’t made yet, I encourage you to ask yourself what the next smallest step is that you can take toward the general direction of your goal.

I told you it was going to be surprisingly simple, and it is.

There is still one more step you can take if you want to take this to the next level.

Feel the End Result, Now

Have you ever made an important decisions while you were feeling bad?

We all have, and the result is often unpleasant, uncomfortable, and unwanted.

This is why I want you to imagine what it would feel like to have already accomplished your goal.

Then feel what it feels like in your body. And from this state of already having the feeling you want to have, ask yourself what the next smallest step is that you can take, right now.

This will get you effortlessly moving in the right direction without overwhelm, fear, or anxiety.

This doesn’t mean you’ll never feel negative, because you will, but it will get you moving, and once you’re moving, you become unstoppable.

You see, when you feel good and make decisions from a state of peace, happiness, joy, inspiration, or even fulfillment, it will lead to more of those feelings.

How to get yourself to take action towards your goal

Over the past few years, I’ve struggled with staying consistent with goals that I set for myself. I would make goals, legitimate things I wanted learn, or ways I wanted to better myself, and not stick to it. For instance, I attempted quite a few times to gain conversational fluency in a language, make exercising, healthy eating, and meditation on a daily basis a life habit. I would do my goal for a few weeks or even a few months, and then fall off, whether it be due to a shift in my schedule or if I suddenly became more busy. That was extremely frustrating, not being able to stick to the goals I set for myself. I’m sure almost everyone can relate to falling short of the expectations you set for yourself. I would constantly make excuses like, “I’m in New York, it’s almost impossible to plan a consistent schedule.”

More recently I was planning to undertake another feat (which I have tried several times before): making writing a daily habit. As I was mapping out how I would hold myself accountable for this “new” goal, I realized that I was regressing back to old habits. i.e., planning out my reminders through apps, writing lists, etc.

I caught myself, and had the realization that I’m acting out the definition of insanity. repeating the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

I was taking the exact same approach as last time to achieve the goal I set. I’ve tried several different methods, such as accountability buddies, reminders, sheer willpower. but nothing has really worked well thus far.

I stopped and asked myself, “What’s wrong with me? Why can’t I stick to anything?” I beat myself up for a few seconds, then asked myself a better more empowering question, “How can I truly succeed at this goal?”

What I realized is that I was trying to squeeze my goal into my schedule, and not consciously carve out/dedicate time to it. That’s when things get tricky. Your other everyday tasks will take precedent over your new goal. Achieving something is a practice, just as meditation, writing every day, working out, eating healthy, etc. are practices as well. Time needs to be allotted to it. As I continued to ponder, I came up with three ways to stay committed to a goal:

1. Be in the Right Mindset
You have to know your why. why is accomplishing this goal important to you? How will it ultimately improve your life? If you don’t have a compelling enough answer for yourself, then you probably won’t stick to it since it’s not that important to you. You have to want to change bad enough, because when the going gets tough, you’ll quit. Nobody wants to sacrifice for something that they don’t see a lot of value in.

To put yourself in the right mindset you also need to be reading the right books, and talking to people with similar interests. If you do that you’ll never need another reminder because it has now become a part of your life.

Personally, I realized that I wasn’t in the right mindset since I was not reading books, I was watching more tv than usual, and just being an overall corporate zombie. I would get up, go to work, and come back home. Improving your mindset will significantly improve other areas of your life.

2. Make the Habit a Priority

During the time that I wasn’t in the right mindset, I realized that my schedule was very disheveled. I would jump out of bed 20 minutes before I needed to leave for work, throw on clothes, and head out the door. No wonder I couldn’t stick to my goals. When would I find time to make my green smoothie or meditate in the morning? My goal was not a priority, so I knew I needed to change that. The most effective way to turn your goal into a habit is to plan ahead. You can’t hope that your goals will happen to fit into your current schedule, or that by nature you will prioritize it. You have to plan your schedule and block out time. That could mean making every Sunday meal prep day for the week.

3. Have an Accountability Buddy
Earlier I mentioned having an accountability buddy in my “list of things that I tried but didn’t work.” However an accountability buddy can work really well when you’re doing everything else right. For instance, when I had an accountability buddy it worked out well and it helped me get far with my goal. The problem was that it eventually fizzled out since we both weren’t committed to being accountability buddies, and other daily life things took precedent.

Moral of the story, an accountability buddy can help you make strides in your goals. The key is finding someone reliable and truly committed. If you can’t find someone to be an accountability buddy, tell a friend or your family about what you plan to do. There have been several times when my friends and family have reminded me to stay on track with my goals when they see me getting distracted.

4. Educate Yourself on Your Goal
Nourishing your mind on the habit you choose to pursue is immensely helpful. Knowing more about the topic will help strengthen your “why.” If you know that mediation is good for improving your overall health wouldn’t that motivate you to do it more? Another great example is getting in shape. As most of us know, being fit is not only about exercising, but also eating healthy. How do you learn to eat healthy? By reading books, watching documentaries, and talking to your friends that care just as much about being healthy as you do.

At the end of the day, success in anything comes from making it a priority. Wanting to achieve something isn’t enough. You have to make the conscious effort to better your life. It’s not easy, but it can be a very rewarding feeling when you accomplish something you set out to do. Now I’m not saying that you shouldn’t set reminders, but you shouldn’t solely rely on that to keep you accountable to your goals. You should strive to make your new challenge an everyday part of your life, to where it becomes second nature like brushing your teeth. It should almost become a passion of yours, that you think about every day. Make the conscious effort to hold yourself accountable to your goals.

Alicia T. Glenn is the founder of Astounding Pursuits, a blog in which she shares her experiences and advice on how to accomplish cool things, and live a more fulfilled life by discovering and pursuing your passion. Join her free newsletter to get business ideas, life hacks, and strategies on how to live a more astounding life.

How to get yourself to take action towards your goal

Taking action is one of the most necessary steps in effectuating life changes. However, as most of us know, sometimes it is very difficult to take that first step and commit to a desired achievement.

So what do you need to do in order to take action? Motivation, you might say.

But, not so fast! There is a misconception that motivation is the reason for taking action. The truth of the matter is that motivation is the result of action, not its cause. Thus, you don’t need to wait to feel inspired before you implement a new behavior. You can immediately begin by gathering your willpower (a strong self-control determination that allows you to do something difficult) and stop procrastinating.

No doubt, you already know well how to schedule actions, including the ones you have been procrastinating about. The question is, what’s holding you back from scheduling a time to start your action?

The key is to think about motivation as the desired outcome for completing a procrastinated action. In other words, motivation is the last step, not the first.

Asking yourself the following three questions may help you analyze your motivation in order to achieve a desired outcome:

• What is my main reason for completing the task?

• How will it make me feel when it’s finally done?

• How will it improve my life?

Or, you might choose to look at it like this: Desired Goal > Positive Change > Clear Plan > Committed Action > Desired Outcome.

In my previous article, I talked about the difference between making a choice and making a decision. If you make a decision from a place of choice, you can create a positive change that’s aligned with your life priorities while making a clear commitment to accomplishing a desired goal. When you have the desire to make a change, it becomes a goal. The next challenge is to follow through and complete this goal.

How often do you hear someone say they’ve been wanting to change their career for years, but haven’t done anything about it? Why have they been unable to convert this desired change into a goal? There is one obvious reason and one hidden one. Those reasons are:

1. A lack of self-discipline to stay persistent in achieving a goal.

2. Low-self-efficacy, which is the hidden disbelief that you can complete a goal before you even start making baby steps toward it.

Self-Discipline

First, let’s talk about self-discipline: the initial obstacle in not converting a desired change into a goal.

Time management and persistence are two types of fuel for cultivating self-discipline. If you waste time and allow yourself to get distracted in progressing toward your desired goal, you welcome unsuccessful habits instead of successful ones and instill those bad habits in your modus operandi. You change your modus operandi and sustain your perseverance by willfully and methodically focusing your thoughts and energy on the goal at hand.

Your choice is whether to demonstrate excellent or mediocre behavior. Are you going to have a successful or an average life? If you choose excellence, you have to fight mediocrity and commit yourself to excellence. Sometimes, being aware of what you don’t want in life makes your self-discipline sustainable over the long haul.

Self-Efficacy

Second, let’s talk about low self-efficacy, which is another obstacle in converting your desired change into a goal.

Self-efficacy is the strength of your belief in your ability to achieve goals. In its negative form, it is a dark, hidden, normalizing behavioral pattern of giving up on your desired goals before you even start.

The beliefs that you have about your abilities shape your entire life. If you have low self-efficacy, you don’t believe that you can achieve your dreams, and you have probably led yourself to live a humdrum life instead of realizing your full potential.

People with high self-efficacy approach challenging tasks as things they can master. People with low self-efficacy avoid challenges and rarely commit to their life goals. They are reluctant to take the necessary actions toward a desired change. They don’t believe that change is even possible, so they give up before they even start. They go round and round the goal with their eyes fixated on the ground without even looking up to all that could be, high above them.

The antidote for low self-efficacy is to identify the disempowering self-limiting belief that keeps you far away from a desired outcome.

Thus, here is a committed action plan that successful people practice weekly:

1. Identify a clear reason for a desired goal.

2. See this desired outcome as a positive change.

3. Develop a routine of self-discipline, very consciously focusing on progressing toward your desired goal and not regressing.

• Use time management; prioritize your goal progression daily by staying persistent in choosing your desired outcome again and again.

4. Increase your self-efficacy by:

• Recognizing that it is your limiting beliefs that are slowing you down and impeding your progress toward your desired goals.

• Replacing your limiting beliefs with a new, powerful belief.

5. Assess the clarity of your plan to achieve a desired action, and write down the action plan with specifics and completion dates.

6. Commit to your daily action plan progression by setting morning intentions with priorities to achieve the action steps and evening reflections analyzing the completion steps.

7. Find a partner to share your daily goal’s progress with.

8 . Reward yourself weekly for staying on track.

9. Repeat items 1-8.

Now you know the secret routine of successful people. It’s up to you to let your desired outcomes shine and infuse your life with actions. Remember, in order to win, you need to start and progress daily in life! No race was ever won without a beginning.

How to get yourself to take action towards your goal

Emotional Intelligence (EI) Executive Coach at InLight Coaching. Let EI enhance your career and relationships with EQi-2/360® Assessments! Read Svetlana Whitener’s full

Emotional Intelligence (EI) Executive Coach at InLight Coaching. Let EI enhance your career and relationships with EQi-2/360® Assessments! Read Svetlana Whitener’s full executive profile here.

How to get yourself to take action towards your goal

Achieving our goals is seldom easy. It’s why knowing how to stay motivated is so incredibly important when it comes to getting what we want in the long term. And in a world with more distractions than ever before — from non-stop web access to constant texting — it can be all the harder to stay focused and productive and not just give in to what’s easier in the moment.

I’ve often struggled with motivation, whether it’s been related to my career, my health, or just getting better at a hobby I enjoy. And while it’s not always the biggest deal (it’s not really all that vital that I learn to play my favorite song on the ukulele by my birthday), sometimes it really worries me. I don’t want to be filled with regret at some point down the line because I didn’t follow through on something I really wanted, and I also don’t want to feel like I failed at achieving the things that are important to me, all because I couldn’t figure out how to stay motivated.

Because this is a topic that matters to me, I delved into some pretty serious online research, as well as checked in with an expert, to find the absolute best ways to stay motivated in life. If you’re looking for ways to help yourself achieve your goals, here are 11 tips that should help.

1. Don’t Assume Money Will Motivate You

In an interview with Bustle over email, motivational trainer (plus business and life coach) Karen Strunks says, “Many people think money alone will be enough to motivate them, and whilst that may do so initially, it’s very hard to sustain financial motivation if the work you are doing actually drags. If you do that type of work for long enough you will find that no amount of money is worth swapping parts of your life in activities that aren’t aligned with who you are and what truly is your passion and mission in life.” So first things first, be true to yourself when it comes to setting goals!

2. Make Sure They’re Your Goals

And on that note, Strunks also says that, “One of the biggest challenges in staying motivated and sticking to our goals is in making sure that the goals we have set our ones we really want to attain.” She went on to note, “Sometimes we set goals based on what we think we ‘should’ do. Or we base them on what other people say.” Make sure you’re going after something that you want and that makes you happy — it can make all the difference.

3. Visualize The Results

According to a piece featured on Forbes about staying motivated, it’s important to visualize the end result and what it will feel like when you’ve achieved your end goal. This means visualizing the sweat on your back, the feeling of relief, the utter excitement — this is what will fuel you on days when you don’t feel like working.

4. Break The Goal Down Into Smaller Pieces

The same Forbes compilation piece recommended breaking your goals down into smaller, more task-oriented goals — and set target deadline for those tasks. For example. if your goal is “re-organize my entire closet,” start by saying, “First I’m going to tackle the shoes, then the belts, then the winter coats in the back,” etc. This method can make even the biggest task feel more manageable.

5. Tap Into Other People’s Energy

In a piece for Inc, small business advisor Marla Tabaka stressed the importance of surrounding yourself with positive thinkers who emanate positive energy. “Do you have people in your life who can engage in stimulating conversation about business or the other things that you’re passionate about? As human beings we give and receive energy and inspiration. Make sure you are receiving as much, or more, than you are handing out,” Tabaka wrote.

6. Get Organized

Tabaka also recommended taking time to sit down and organize your thoughts. “When I’m working on a big project, nothing zaps my energy more than an over-stimulated, cluttered mind,” she wrote. So instead, sit down and move the process from your head to an actual organized list, or talk out what you’re thinking with a trusted friend (or both). Then schedule specific times to complete each task. This is key to getting what you want.

7. Keep The Big Picture In Mind

One of my favorite YouTube personalities, Tessa Violet, stressed the importance of keeping your “top tier” goal in mind at all times, even when doing the less pleasant, more menial tasks related to it. That way, she said, “If you’re having a week where you feel like [you’re’] not motivated to do the work, you remember, ‘My goal isn’t about finishing the work. My goal is about something bigger.'”

8. Don’t Worry About What You Can’t Control

In a piece for The Huffington Post, life coach Stacia Pierce said to “take control of what you can, and don’t worry about what you can’t.” So if you often find yourself paralyzed with the “what ifs” (as in, “What if I write this and no one reads it,” “What if I don’t get accepted into the program,” etc, etc) let it go and just focus on turning out quality work.

9. Seek Out Positive Information

Pierce also recommended reading or listening to positive information every single day. “If you fill your mind with uplifting and inspiring information, it will keep you motivated. Go to the bookstore or library today and find at least one book on a positive topic that will give you a boost. You need constant reminders telling you that you are capable of achievement,” she wrote.

10. Remind Yourself Why You Set The Goal

In a piece for Tiny Buddha, integrated channeler Maria Moraca said that when things feel overwhelming, just take a few moments to sit back and remind yourself why you chose your path in the first place. Was it to help people? Was it because you knew your end goal would lead to long term happiness, even if it was short term work? This can always help you find clarity in the worst moments.

11. Be Consistent

And finally, Strunks also stressed the importance of being consistent with your work, writing, “take consistent action every single day.” This means that even if you’re totally not in the mood, do one small proactive thing that will move you towards your ultimate goal — even if it’s just a tweet.

Staying motivated is absolutely within your reach — it’s often just about keeping your end goal in mind and breaking down the larger end result into manageable smaller steps. Remember — you can do it!

This article was originally published on July 20, 2016

How to get yourself to take action towards your goal

Taking action is one of the most necessary steps in effectuating life changes. However, as most of us know, sometimes it is very difficult to take that first step and commit to a desired achievement.

So what do you need to do in order to take action? Motivation, you might say.

But, not so fast! There is a misconception that motivation is the reason for taking action. The truth of the matter is that motivation is the result of action, not its cause. Thus, you don’t need to wait to feel inspired before you implement a new behavior. You can immediately begin by gathering your willpower (a strong self-control determination that allows you to do something difficult) and stop procrastinating.

No doubt, you already know well how to schedule actions, including the ones you have been procrastinating about. The question is, what’s holding you back from scheduling a time to start your action?

The key is to think about motivation as the desired outcome for completing a procrastinated action. In other words, motivation is the last step, not the first.

Asking yourself the following three questions may help you analyze your motivation in order to achieve a desired outcome:

• What is my main reason for completing the task?

• How will it make me feel when it’s finally done?

• How will it improve my life?

Or, you might choose to look at it like this: Desired Goal > Positive Change > Clear Plan > Committed Action > Desired Outcome.

In my previous article, I talked about the difference between making a choice and making a decision. If you make a decision from a place of choice, you can create a positive change that’s aligned with your life priorities while making a clear commitment to accomplishing a desired goal. When you have the desire to make a change, it becomes a goal. The next challenge is to follow through and complete this goal.

How often do you hear someone say they’ve been wanting to change their career for years, but haven’t done anything about it? Why have they been unable to convert this desired change into a goal? There is one obvious reason and one hidden one. Those reasons are:

1. A lack of self-discipline to stay persistent in achieving a goal.

2. Low-self-efficacy, which is the hidden disbelief that you can complete a goal before you even start making baby steps toward it.

Self-Discipline

First, let’s talk about self-discipline: the initial obstacle in not converting a desired change into a goal.

Time management and persistence are two types of fuel for cultivating self-discipline. If you waste time and allow yourself to get distracted in progressing toward your desired goal, you welcome unsuccessful habits instead of successful ones and instill those bad habits in your modus operandi. You change your modus operandi and sustain your perseverance by willfully and methodically focusing your thoughts and energy on the goal at hand.

Your choice is whether to demonstrate excellent or mediocre behavior. Are you going to have a successful or an average life? If you choose excellence, you have to fight mediocrity and commit yourself to excellence. Sometimes, being aware of what you don’t want in life makes your self-discipline sustainable over the long haul.

Self-Efficacy

Second, let’s talk about low self-efficacy, which is another obstacle in converting your desired change into a goal.

Self-efficacy is the strength of your belief in your ability to achieve goals. In its negative form, it is a dark, hidden, normalizing behavioral pattern of giving up on your desired goals before you even start.

The beliefs that you have about your abilities shape your entire life. If you have low self-efficacy, you don’t believe that you can achieve your dreams, and you have probably led yourself to live a humdrum life instead of realizing your full potential.

People with high self-efficacy approach challenging tasks as things they can master. People with low self-efficacy avoid challenges and rarely commit to their life goals. They are reluctant to take the necessary actions toward a desired change. They don’t believe that change is even possible, so they give up before they even start. They go round and round the goal with their eyes fixated on the ground without even looking up to all that could be, high above them.

The antidote for low self-efficacy is to identify the disempowering self-limiting belief that keeps you far away from a desired outcome.

Thus, here is a committed action plan that successful people practice weekly:

1. Identify a clear reason for a desired goal.

2. See this desired outcome as a positive change.

3. Develop a routine of self-discipline, very consciously focusing on progressing toward your desired goal and not regressing.

• Use time management; prioritize your goal progression daily by staying persistent in choosing your desired outcome again and again.

4. Increase your self-efficacy by:

• Recognizing that it is your limiting beliefs that are slowing you down and impeding your progress toward your desired goals.

• Replacing your limiting beliefs with a new, powerful belief.

5. Assess the clarity of your plan to achieve a desired action, and write down the action plan with specifics and completion dates.

6. Commit to your daily action plan progression by setting morning intentions with priorities to achieve the action steps and evening reflections analyzing the completion steps.

7. Find a partner to share your daily goal’s progress with.

8 . Reward yourself weekly for staying on track.

9. Repeat items 1-8.

Now you know the secret routine of successful people. It’s up to you to let your desired outcomes shine and infuse your life with actions. Remember, in order to win, you need to start and progress daily in life! No race was ever won without a beginning.

How to get yourself to take action towards your goal

Emotional Intelligence (EI) Executive Coach at InLight Coaching. Let EI enhance your career and relationships with EQi-2/360® Assessments! Read Svetlana Whitener’s full

Emotional Intelligence (EI) Executive Coach at InLight Coaching. Let EI enhance your career and relationships with EQi-2/360® Assessments! Read Svetlana Whitener’s full executive profile here.

How to Achieve Your Lifelong Dreams

How to get yourself to take action towards your goal

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Don’t let your goals and resolutions fall by the wayside. Chances are that to achieve your dreams and live a life you love, those goals and resolutions are crucial. Goal setting and goal achievement are easier if you follow these six steps for effective and successful goal setting and lifelong resolution accomplishment. See how effective this recommended path is for you.

Deeply Desire the Goal or Resolution

Napoleon Hill, in his landmark book, “Think and Grow Rich,” had it right.

“The starting point of all achievement is DESIRE. Keep this constantly in mind. Weak desires bring weak results, just as a small amount of fire makes a small amount of heat.”  

So, your first step in goal setting and achieving your dreams is that you’ve got to really, really want to achieve the goal.

Visualize Yourself Achieving the Goal

Lee Iacocca said, “The greatest discovery of my generation is that human beings can alter their lives by altering their attitudes of mind.”  

What will your achievement feel like? How will your life unfold differently as a result of your achievement?

If the goal is an object, a trip, or anything that can be visual in nature, some gurus of goal setting recommend that you keep a picture of the item or destination where you see and are reminded of it every day. If you can’t picture yourself achieving the goal, chances are you won’t.

Make a Plan for a Path to Follow to Accomplish the Goal

Create action steps to follow. Identify a critical path. The critical path defines the key accomplishments along the way, the most important steps that must happen for the goal to become a reality.

Stephen Covey said, “All things are created twice. There’s a mental or first creation and a physical or second creation of all things. You have to make sure that the blueprint, the first creation, is really what you want, that you’ve thought everything through. Then you put it into bricks and mortar. Each day you go to the construction shed and pull out the blueprint to get marching orders for the day. You begin with the end inmind.”  

Commit to the Goal by Writing It Down

Lee Iacocca said, “The discipline of writing something down is the first step toward making it happen.”  

Many professional consultants and coaches agree completely and recommend this step to accomplish your goals. Write down the plan, the action steps, and the critical path. Somehow, writing down the goal, the plan, and a timeline sets events in motion that may not have happened otherwise.

It is as if you are making a deeper commitment to goal accomplishment. You can’t fool yourself later. The written objective really was the goal. People have pulled written goals out of their desk drawers years after writing them down only to discover that they have achieved them. Written goals are powerful.

Check Your Progress Frequently

Whatever you use, a day planner, an online calendar or notetaking system, a smartphone, or a handwritten list, make sure that you check your progress frequently. People have been known to start their day by looking at their goals and then, scheduling time or action steps to move closer to the end they have in mind. If you’re not making progress or feel stymied, don’t let your optimism keep you from accomplishing your goals.

No matter how positively you are thinking, you need to assess your lack of progress. Adopt a pessimist’s viewpoint; something will and probably is, going to go wrong. Take a look at all of the factors that are keeping you from accomplishing your goal and develop a plan to overcome them. Add these plan steps to your calendar system as part of your goal achievement plan.

Adjust Your Plan if Progress Slows

Make sure that you are making progress. If you are not making progress, hire a coach, tap into the support of loved ones, analyze why the goal is not being met. Don’t allow the goal to just fade away. Figure out what you need to do to accomplish it.

Check the prior five steps starting with an assessment of how deeply you actually want to achieve the goal. The more deeply you want to obtain it, generally, the more motivated you will feel in the face of both optimism and pessimism.

The Bottom Line

This six-step goal setting and achieving system seems simple, but it is a powerful system for achieving your goals and resolutions and even living your dreams. You just need to do it. Best wishes and good luck on your journey to accomplishing your life goals and resolutions. Enjoy the journey.

Last Updated: December 23, 2020 References Approved

This article was co-authored by Sydney Axelrod. Sydney Axelrod is a certified life coach and the owner of Sydney Axelrod LLC, a life coaching business focused on professional and personal development. Through one-on-one coaching, digital courses, and group workshops, Sydney works with clients to discover their purpose, navigate life transitions, and set and accomplish goals. Sydney has over 1,000 hours of relevant coaching certifications and holds a BBA in Marketing and Finance from Emory University.

There are 15 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page.

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Whether you have small dreams or lofty expectations, setting goals allows you to plan how you want to move through life. Some achievements can take a lifetime to attain, while others can be completed in the course of a day. Whether you’re setting broad overarching goals or planning specific manageable goals, you’ll feel a sense of accomplishment and self-worth. Getting started can seem daunting, but you can build up to even the loftiest dream.

How to get yourself to take action towards your goal

How to get yourself to take action towards your goal

Sydney Axelrod
Certified Life Coach Expert Interview. 30 June 2020. Consider areas of your life that you either want to change or that you feel you would like to develop with time. Areas might include: career, finances, family, education, or health. Begin to ask yourself questions about what you’d like to achieve in each area and how you would like to approach it within a five year time frame. [3] X Research source

    For the life goal “I want to be fit,” you might make the smaller goals “I want to eat more healthily” and “I want to run a marathon.” [4] X Expert Source

Sydney Axelrod
Certified Life Coach Expert Interview. 30 June 2020.

  • For the life goal “I want to open my own business,” the smaller goals may be “I want to learn to manage a business effectively” and “I want to open an independent book store.”
  • How to get yourself to take action towards your goal

    Sydney Axelrod
    Certified Life Coach Expert Interview. 30 June 2020. Give yourself a deadline within a reasonable time frame (no more than a year for short-term goals).

    • Writing your goals will make them harder to ignore, consequently making you accountable for them.
    • To become fit, your first goals may be to eat more vegetables and to run a 5k.
    • To open your own business, your first goals may be to take a bookkeeping class and to find the perfect location for your bookstore.

    How to get yourself to take action towards your goal

    Sydney Axelrod
    Certified Life Coach Expert Interview. 30 June 2020. Some good questions to ask yourself when figuring this out are: does it seem worthwhile? Is now the right time for this? Does this match my needs? [7] X Research source

    • For example, while a short-term fitness goal might be to take up a new sport within six months, ask yourself if that will help you reach your bigger goal of running a marathon. If not, consider changing the short term goal to something that will be a step towards meeting the life goal.

    How to get yourself to take action towards your goal

    How to get yourself to take action towards your goal

    How to get yourself to take action towards your goal

    Sydney Axelrod
    Certified Life Coach Expert Interview. 30 June 2020. In order for us to track our progress, goals should be quantifiable. “I’m going to walk more” is far more difficult to track and measure than “Every day I’m going to walk around the track 16 times.” Essentially, you’ll need a few ways of determining if you’re reaching your goal. [11] X Research source

    • “Run a 5K” is a measurable goal. You know for certain when you have done it. You may need to set the even shorter-term goal of “run at least 3 miles (4.8 km), 3 times every week” to work towards your first 5K. After your first 5K, a measurable goal would be “run another 5K in one month, but take 4 minutes off of my time.”
    • Likewise, “take a bookkeeping class” is measurable because it is a specific class that you will sign up to take and go to every week. A less measurable version would be “learn about bookkeeping,” which is vague because it’s difficult to know when you’re “finished” learning about bookkeeping.