Two Simple Steps to Achieve Your Goals
What Will You Do Today?
What will you do today to achieve your goals? Whether your goal is to run a marathon, lose weight, get a job promotion, or start your own business, what are you going to do today to move you towards that goal? What did you do yesterday to move you towards that goal? What is your plan for the rest of the week, month, and year to move you towards that goal?
If you read any motivational book, most of them have the same underlying theme. We need to take an active role in our lives. We can’t just sit back and wait for what we want, we need to go out there and get it. In fact, three of the most popular inspirational quotes are:
Just do it! - Nike
Do it Now! – Napoleon Hill
Carpe Diem. – Horace
I could probably list dozens if not hundreds of other popular quotes all with the same theme – success doesn’t come to those who just wish for it. Success comes to those who work day in and day out to achieve their goal. No, it’s not glamourous, but it’s the way success works. Take action and do it daily.
Some days are certainly easier than others. Some days we wake up and are ready to go while other days it is a struggle just to get out of bed. The real challenge comes on those days when we shuffle to the kitchen for our coffee, but it is those days that are most important. It is also those days that separate the achievers from the under-achievers. The under-achievers decide they are going to take a day off, which turns into 2 days and then 3 days… and the achievers dig deep and do it anyway.
So what do we need to do on those days that are exceptionally challenging?
The answer may surprise you and it comes down to a basic law of physics.
Newton’s Law of Motion
An object at rest tends to stay at rest AND an object in motion tends to stay in motion.
So how does this help you on those days when you can’t find the energy to do what you need to do?
Recognize that the HARDEST part is simply getting started!
Once we realize that it is only the first few minutes that will be difficult, we can usually find the motivation to at least START. Those first few minutes to get moving may be challenging, but once we are moving, it doesn’t require as much effort.
Think about driving a car. Your car uses more gas to get up to speed, but once it is moving, it requires less gas to maintain that speed.
Maybe we have to write a paper for school. The first few sentences are usually the hardest to get down on paper. Once we start writing, it tends to get easier.
Maybe we need to do the dishes after dinner. The hardest part is getting started. Once we roll up our sleeves and start running the water, it gets easier.
Maybe we want to exercise. The hardest part is getting started. Once we get through the first couple of minutes and our heart rate is elevated, it gets easier.
Do it Now
Give it a try right now. What is one thing that you have been putting off doing? Pick something small to start – something that will take less than 10 minutes to complete. Maybe there is a load of laundry that needs to be folded. Whatever it is, do it now and think about the effort that is required to do that task. What is more difficult? The first few minutes as you are getting started or the last few minutes as you are finishing?
Now that you know that daily action is required to achieve your destiny and the first few minutes of a given task are the hardest, what are you waiting for? You know the secret between those who succeed and those who don’t and it all comes down to a few minutes to get started. I encourage you to use that knowledge today.
1. Put your plan in place for the next week. Schedule your week and find a block of time every day that you can use to start shaping your future. Do it now.
Two Minutes to Start
2. Every day, at the designated time that YOU scheduled, just get started. If your task is to exercise, just lace up your shoes and start moving for a couple minutes. If your task is to learn to play the piano, just sit down and start playing. Give yourself a few minutes to go from a state of rest to a state of motion and the rest will take care of itself.
Cruise Through the Rest
Once we realize that that the first few minutes are the hardest part, tasks don’t seem as overwhelming. Just like a car sitting at a traffic light, we need to give ourselves the gas for a few minutes to get moving, but then we can put ourselves on cruise control and cruise through all of our tasks to achieve our destiny.