How to Make the Time for Your Personal Goals
“Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your eyes off your goal.” - Henry Ford One of the biggest challenges in trying to accomplish any persona...
To use this functions you must log in. If you have not account yet, use Create account button.
Place this code, and your visitors will be able to read this article directly from your site.
“Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your eyes off your goal.” - Henry Ford
One of the biggest challenges in trying to accomplish any personal
goal is that we tend to put them off until tomorrow, or next week, in
favor of more pressing matters at work and home.
Unfortunately, tomorrow never gets here.
Photo courtesy of MJ Mac
If you want to accomplish a goal, you have to start on it today.
Finding the time to take the steps necessary is the problem, of course,
as we all lead busy and complicated lives, and when we do have time,
we’re too tired to do anything that requires energy or thought. We want
to veg out in front of the TV, or take a nap.
So how do you find the time for your personal goals? That’s what reader Trin recently asked:
How to do you honestly make the time? I’m not even sure
where to begin with my own goals, as I already feel I have to sacrifice
something important to take care of me. I would really love your
opinion, as a father of 6 children, what activities were cut out of
your daily life in order to insert your personal goals?
I’m not going to be able to give an easy answer. There isn’t a
single little trick I can give you to find huge blocks of time where
you can pursue all the goals you’ve ever dreamed of. It takes work, it
takes commitment, it takes motivation … but it can be done, without a
doubt. I’ve done it — despite being married with six kids, and until
recently working two jobs, I found time to train for a marathon, to
work on eliminating my debt, to eat healthier, to declutter and become
organized, to wake earlier, and more.
How? Again, there was no one step that did it for me, but a series of them that add up over time:
- One goal at a time. Often the problem is that we
try to take on too many goals at once. We have a list of things we want
to accomplish, spanning the spectrum from gardening to learning Italian
to getting in shape. It can be overwhelming, and because of that we
never start. Or instead, perhaps we start with a head full of steam,
but then run out of steam quickly, because it’s extremely difficult to
maintain focus and energy (the two key ingredients in accomplishing a
goal) for too many goals at once. Even two goals at once is difficult,
if you aren’t already running on autopilot for one of those goals. For
now, focus on one goal at a time. Once that’s on autopilot, you can go
to the next one. Figure on at least a month per goal.
- Make sure you really want it. It’s not enough to say, “It would be nice to learn French” or “It would be cool to do yoga every morning”. It has to be something you really want. Ask
yourself why you want to achieve this goal, and how much you want it.
Figure out your motivations. That’s important to do early on, or you
won’t make time for it.
- Make it your top priority. We all have multiple
things to focus on in our lives, from school or work to family to
errands to various goals and commitments and hobbies and civic
activities. If we put all these focuses before our One Goal, we won’t
ever find the time for our goal. There’s only so much time in the day.
At some point, we’ve got to prioritize, and if we make our goal our top
priority,we’ll make the time.
- Reduce your commitments. I’m a big fan of
simplifying your life — and one of the first things you should do when
simplifying is to make a short list of the 4-5 things that are most
important to you, that you want to make time for, that you love and
that bring you joy. I’ve said this before, but just to give you an
example, my top things are spending time with my family, writing,
reading, and running. Everything else is non-essential. Once you’ve
made your short list, you should reduce some of the non-essential
commitments. Is being a member of the Harley-Davidson club no longer
bringing you joy and fulfillment? Gracefully bow out. If you reduce at
least a few commitments, you’ll now have room in your life for the
things you want to do — including your personal goal.
- Keep it simple. It’s important not to make your
personal goal too complicated. You don’t want to have a huge list of
things to do in order to accomplish your goal. You’ll be overwhelmed.
Instead, focus on a smaller sub-goal that will lead you to your bigger
goal. If you have a goal to invest for retirement, for example, make
your first goal simply to learn what you need to know about investing.
Make your second goal to open the necessary account and transfer money.
Then make it your goal to have regular, automatic contributions and not
to touch those contributions. Another approach is to focus first on
creating a habit that will get you to your goal. If your goal is
getting in shape, for example, focus on forming the habit of walking
each day (or running, or cycling, or whatever). Once you’ve formed that
habit, focus on drinking only water. Then on eating fruits and veggies
instead of junk snacks. And so on, until you’ve reached your goal.
- Stay focused. One of the most difficult things
when it comes to achieving goals is maintaining your focus on that
goal. It’s easy to become obsessed with something else, and when we
lose focus, we suddenly stop making time for the goal. Instead, find
ways to maintain that focus. Put a poster on your wall, or a printout
on your fridge, or make your goal your computer desktop picture. Send
yourself daily reminders. Tell others about it, in real life and on
your blog, and have them ask you about it daily.
- Block off time. OK, this is a crucial step. Maybe
it should be No. 1 on this list, but I felt it important to lay the
foundation with the steps above first. But once you’ve laid that
foundation, you absolutely must block off time to work on your goal.
Whatever time works for you — first thing in the morning, lunchtime,
mid-afternoon, right after work, late at night. Try to schedule a time
when you won’t be interrupted by other “urgent” requests (meetings,
calls, kids, etc.) and when you have good energy. For me, that’s in the
morning, as mid-afternoons are times when other things come up to
interrupt your schedule (especially when I worked in an office) and
early evening (right after work for most people) I tend to get a bit
tired. You have to find the right block of time. Designate no less than
30 minutes, although really an hour is much, much better. Two hours
isn’t feasible for most people, but your schedule might be different.
- Make it your most important appointment. That
block of time you just scheduled has to be given the utmost priority.
There are appointments we take seriously — a doctor’s appointment, or
an important meeting — and we will do everything we can to ensure that
we make those appointments and are not late for them. “Sorry, I have a
doctor’s appointment at that time — can’t take the conference call
until a couple hours later.” But when it comes to our time for working
on our personal goal, we will often push it back because of other
pressing things. Don’t let that happen. Make that block of time on your
schedule become sacrosanct, and never let it be violated.
- Show that you’re serious. Be fully committed. Tell
as many people as possible about your goal, and the scheduled block of
time that is sacrosanct. Write down your goal, and be specific. If you
can’t even write it down, you’re not serious. Then write out a plan,
with dates and actions. Think about obstacles, and write down your
strategy for overcoming them. The plan shows you’re serious.
- Find your time wasters. In every person’s life,
there are things that can easily be cut out without making much of a
difference. Things that waste our time without giving us much benefit.
Things such as TV, video games, fun stuff online, going to bars, etc.
If you can identify those time wasters, you can free up time for
working on your goals. Remember, if it’s not on your short list (No. 4
above), you can eliminate it.
- Make it a part of your daily or weekly routine.
This is important to keep the goal going for a long period of time. If
it’s a goal you can complete in a week, you don’t need to do this step.
But the most worthwhile goals are ones that take time to accomplish,
and for those, you’ll need to make it part of your routine. Some goals
will need to be daily — say, drinking water, or exercise, or perhaps
decluttering. Find a time in your daily routine where you will always
do this activity, and don’t let yourself drop it. Put it immediately
after something that’s already firmly ingrained in your routine — say,
showering or brushing your teeth, or arriving at work — so that you
won’t forget to do it. For other goal activities, a weekly schedule
would be better — say, making a weekly savings deposit or debt payment,
or a weekly yoga class — put this on your calendar and have a reminder
sent to you so you don’t forget it.
“Try not. Do or do not. There is no try.” - Yoda in The Empire Strikes Back
Rekomendowany: 1 razy
Visitors on-line: 1
All rights reserved
We've got 1 400 000 visits by month!