For almost all my life, nearly 75 years now, I have been in pretty good health. I know I have been blessed for sure. Then one day as 75 approached, I took a good look in the mirror and didn’t recognize the guy staring back at me. Has that ever happened to you?
I sure didn’t like it. Did I look that old? Had I been deceiving myself? Well, maybe a little. I decided I had to do something about it and turn it around.
I’m sure it’s possible. I promised my kids years ago that I would see their children all graduate from college. Thankfully, they had the last one almost five years ago, because I will need at least another 20 years to see that one through. It’s sort of a sobering thought. But I believe anything is possible if it’s important enough. You must act as though your life depends on achieving it.
As I started typing this post, I got notice that an email had arrived. It was a medical doctor talking about increasing your longevity by improving your digestive health. A coincidence? I think not. It made me even more committed.
Whether it’s your health, your marriage, your business goals or anything else that's really important to you, I know that everything good in life is possible. By committing to a plan and taking a few simple steps, you can make the changes needed to get yourself from where you are to where you want to be.
Make an Assessment
First, take stock of where you are. What do you need to do? Don’t think in generalities; be as specific as you can. Like most everything you want to achieve, there is plenty written about how to do it. The internet is a great source of information. Use all the research and information you need to make a realistic and viable plan.
Know what you need to do. Determine what challenges you face and what actions will overcome them. It might take a series of progressive actions — get one thing done and then another and another.
Set Reasonable, Achievable Goals
The goal or goals you set for yourself may take time; a sprint to the finish may not work. Make sure your goals are challenging — not a slam dunk or too easy to achieve — but make them reasonable. Your goals should be attainable with effort, commitment and persistence.
Be precise in setting your goals and know what you need to do each step of the way. I remember when I was young, it didn’t take long to get in playing shape. Over time, things change. You may need to make adjustments, so build a plan that’s right for the time you’re in. Then take the first step, and then the second.
Don’t get discouraged. Your plan may not be perfect. You may need to adjust it. Don’t be afraid to make the needed changes.
Hold Yourself Accountable
Accountability comes several ways. First, you can hold yourself accountable — every day. In my opinion it can be the best way. It will test your resolve and commitment to your goal.
Many people choose to have an accountability partner. You and your partner might share similar goals, and you can hold each other accountable to seeing them through. Or you can simply share your goal with a someone who will check in with you about it and help you stay on track.
Whichever approach you choose, sharing your goal can help keep you motivated when the going gets tough, and it will.
Reward Yourself Along the Way
I believe it is important to reward effort. Don’t be afraid to celebrate the milestones you make along the way. The idea is to keep motivated to reach your goals. Keep moving forward with your goal in mind.
Yes — keep moving forward. The goal should be so important to you that stopping before you get there is not an option.
I know my personal goal is important to me. I’ll let you know how I’m doing; don’t be afraid to do the same.