Without a doubt, the biggest goal I have achieved so far in life was quitting my day job. Leaving the rat race is not easy, especially in this economy, and I’m proud of my achievements. Now that I’ve ‘made it’ in this area though, I’m not staying stagnant. I have income goals, subscriber goals and goals not related to my business.
First of all, I’m pushing myself to learn a new language in as little as three months. Secondly, I follow a strict training regime in my quest to get big and muscly. These are two goals which aren’t achievable overnight, and will take both hard work and dedication to get the results I want.
Since striving for these big goals in my life, I’ve noticed why I’m able to succeed. Why I’m able to refrain from cheat meals or the urge to skip a protein shake. Why I stay up until midnight just to make sure I get my hour of Dutch practice in for the day. Why I can take myself the extra mile.
Most people might put it down to dedication or even some form of motivation. In actuality, it’s neither of those. Instead, it’s all about my timeframe. Before I get into that, I want to talk about beliefs quickly.
The Importance of Belief
Let’s say that I fly out to wherever you are in the world right now and we go to the nearest running track. I tell you that I want you to power walk 2 laps in 4 minutes, and if you can do that I’ll give you $10,000. I also add that the world record for power walking those two laps is 4 minutes and 3 seconds.
I’m challenging you to break it and show me you are the fastest power walker in the world. How confident would you be about being able to do it? Would you even try?
Now let’s say I go a little easier on you, and say you have 6 minutes to power walk the two laps. That’s a nice 2 minutes slower than the world record. How confident would you be this time you could win the $10,000? You would at least give it a go, wouldn’t you?
Shortening Your Time Frame
Now, with most goals, we tend to think ahead. I know that if I want to take my scrawny body to something you would see in a men’s swimwear catalogue, it’s going to take some time. It won’t happen overnight. Sadly, the only 6 pack I’m likely to wake up with the next day is the one that’s given me a hangover.
Now, my regime for ‘getting ripped’ is quite serious. I take two protein shakes everyday, a number of multivitamins, and I work out specific parts of my body 3-4 times per week. Knowing I’m going to have to do this for at least 4-5 months to see any decent gains can be disheartening.
Similarly, learning Dutch is not going to be a walk in the park. Progress will inevitably happen, but it’s going to be fairly slow. I’m trying my best to learn a lot in as little as three months, but I still have to put in an hour of work every single day just to get anywhere.
If I look into the future, I’m demotivated. As a society, we want results, and we want them now. Gym results won’t happen overnight, and neither will learning a new language. Instead of good old self discipline and motivation, however, you can just shorten your timeframe.
You see, when I know it’s going to take up to 6 months for anyone to even notice I’ve been working out, it makes me want to give up before I’ve even started. If I know I have to take protein shakes every single day for months, I don’t even want to buy a blender to make them.
Instead, if I just focus on what I have to do TODAY, then I can easily achieve my long-term goals. I’m not worried about where I will find my hour to learn Dutch tomorrow. I’m not worried about how early I have to wake up to get all my meals in for the next few months. All I care about is finding my hour today, and doing what I need to do to make things happen.
The future of my goals barely enters my reality.
It’s not hard to wake up early today. It might be tomorrow, but I’m not thinking about it. It’s not hard to write a blog post today. It might be tomorrow, but why think about it. It’s not hard for you to do what is necessary to achieve your goals today. And really, it won’t even be hard tomorrow, if you’re thinking about today.
Just as you probably won’t even try to beat the power walking world record for two laps of the track due to lack of belief, if you don’t think you can do something for a length of time, then you won’t even try. Instead, use the confidence from knowing that you can do what you need to do today, and use that to turn your goals into reality.