27 September 2023

Setting goals: How to turn daydreams into reality

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Melissa Lamson* says setting goals is as far as many people get. She offers some thoughts on how to actually achieve them.

As time wears on, many people are thinking about the goals and resolutions they made at the beginning of the year.

It can also be the time when they decide to give up thinking about them.

Perhaps they stopped even before they got started because for many of us, we are afraid to set goals in fear we don’t know how to begin working towards them.

Or maybe last year we were unsuccessful in fulfilling them so we decide not to do it at all this year.

I would like to offer an alternative idea.

Setting goals is the easy part for most people, but learning how to achieve them requires something completely different.

Most of you know the statistics about how people who write down their goals are more likely to reach them.

However, the simple truth is if you don’t have belief in your goal, writing them down won’t make a difference.

One of the biggest reasons why most people fail when it comes to their goals is they never learn how to develop the skill of believing it’s actually possible.

That is, they don’t really believe their goal is achievable.

There are two reasons people consistently fail at reaching their goals.

You don’t set meaningful goals that truly inspire you to take action.

Most people that set goals either set ones that simply aren’t big enough or they set goals based on someone else’s definition of success.

Then we limit ourselves, because we look to the past and current results for proof of what’s possible in our life.

In other words, we think, if I haven’t done something before, how can I believe that it is possible?

You start the process by asking yourself the wrong question.

Most of us ask ourselves: “What would I need to do to achieve that goal?”

The question we should be asking ourselves is: “Who would I need to be in order to achieve my goals?”

If you want to know how to predict your results for tomorrow, look at your beliefs and the stories you are telling yourself today.

If you want to break the pattern that’s keeping you stuck, you have to let go of your past.

Just because you have never done something before, doesn’t mean you can’t do it now.

Most of you have never even given yourself a chance to show yourself what’s possible.

Mindset first, tactics second: Then you’ll achieve your goals, not just set them.

*Melissa Lamson is President and Chief Executive of Lamson Consulting and a leadership expert with experience in more than 40 countries. She can be contacted at @melissa_lamson1.

This article first appeared on the Lamson Consulting website.

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