As entrepreneurs, we all set goals. It’s a way to measure our progress. The biggest difference I have found between individuals is the size of the goals. Some people are just more ambitious than others. But the size of ones’ ambition is not a precursor to success.
We Risk Drifting Aimlessly”
Goals are wonderful, they keep us moving forward. Much like a ships compass, goals give us a heading or a direction in which to sail, even when our destination is over the horizon. Goals give us focus, because without them, we risk drifting aimlessly.
One of the most common goals entrepreneurs have, is a million dollars! It could be a million dollars in sales, a million dollars in profit or a million dollars in wealth. Regardless of what anybody says, a million dollars is still a lot of money and damn hard to achieve. and the 1st million is the hardest. The million dollar goal was immortalized by The Barenaked Ladies hit “If I Had A Million Dollars”.
The problem with having such lofty goals is that, although achievable, they’re rarely short term, nor easily attained. When you think about it, if we were to measure our progress on a daily basis, most of us would become disillusioned very quickly. The painfully slow progress would be akin to watching a kettle boil.
Patience and Resilience
Most big goals require the compounding effects of time and effort to achieve. Having a healthy dose of patience and resilience usually doesn’t hurt. A major setback can easily destroy the will to continue our journey, turning a goal into another failed impossibility.
To avoid the goal crushing reality that are part of the entrepreneurial life, I use a simple formula or process to break down my loftier goals into a series of smaller more manageable objectives. Simply put, if the 1st million dollars is the hardest, it also stands to reason that the $10,000 is the hardest. Yet $10,000 feels much more achievable in the short term.
Once we get to that 1st $10,000 under our belt, we can set our sights on the $20,000 mark, then $30,000 and so on, relishing in our achievements along the way. Before we know it, we’re hitting our 1st $100,000 and have settled in and marking off the mileposts of our smaller, yet more manageable, intermediary goals.
Whenever, I’m faced with a large seemingly insurmountable goal, I always try to remind myself of the adage on how to eat an elephant and that’s one bite at a time.
Celebrate Our Successes
I know this sounds simple and that’s because it is. By setting smaller more realistic short term goals it gives us the opportunity to celebrate our successes along the way. More importantly though, these shorter goals allow us to refine our methods so we can achieve the next one much faster than the previous one.
Setting smaller more numerous goals will give you a sense of progress. Success can then be measured in months versus years, if not decades. Because the 1st million is the hardest.
An interesting read Pre-Suasion by Robert Cialdini
Copyright © Greg Weatherdon 2017
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