Recently I’ve been struggling with achieving the goals and targets I set my self. And to be honest, that really sucks. In this post, I share my view on goal setting and provide actionable advice on how I managed to get more meaningful work done than ever.
It’s Sunday evening and I’m sitting at my desk thinking about all the meeting, calls and tasks I have to do in the upcoming week. I usually plan my week on a page in my notebook and write down what I want to achieve in the upcoming week.
Then every morning I have a look at the tasks I gotta achieve this day and schedule work periods accordingly.
Sounds too good to be true in theory right?
And yes, that actually where I’m going with this. I personally have struggled with completing tasks that I did not really feel passionate about or did not see the importance. I usually just tell my self: “that’s okay, I’ll just focus on this tomorrow” and so on.
You probably know this situation just all too well. Sometimes you just don’t feel like focusing on the tasks that are necessary to move forward in your life, business or side project.
But sunshine, there’s one truth: Those tasks that you don’t enjoy doing and perhaps are out of your comfort zone are the ones that really matter in the end and make the difference between success and failure.
Key takeaway: Everyone has those tasks that they don’t really wanna do and just postpone every day again and again but the truth is, those tasks are the ones that really matter and determine success or failure of a project or bigger goal.
Are you kidding me, Louis, just starting is the solution to getting $#!t done?
No, I am actually serious. The human brain has one unique power which is that every time we start doing something, we feel the intense need to complete what we started.
We can actually make use of that!
Tell yourself that you just start working on a certain task for 5 minutes. That’s it.
Go sit down and start with the task and once you’re in the middle of completing it, you will perhaps not stop.
The hardest part about accomplishing a goal or completing a task is starting.
If the first tactic which is starting a task for just 5 minutes doesn’t work for you, here’s a different approach.
Set your alarm 30 minutes before you usually wake up and right after awakening from your sleep trauma sit down and tackle the task.
In the morning you are most likely not being distracted by all the people around you that constantly want something from you during the day.
I know it sounds hard to wake up 30 minutes earlier than usual but have you ever considered not watching the Netflix show at night and just going 30 minutes earlier to bed?
Yeah, I think you can manage to do this and just keep in mind that those mornings can be essential for progressing with your plans.
One of my favorite tactics is to have an accountability buddy which can be a close friend or colleague from work.
You simply share what tasks you struggle with them and kindly ask them to remind you.
The effect we are making use of is that you are creating social pressure since you are embarrassed when your buddy asks you about your progress and you have to tell them the truth that you just delayed a certain task again.
Besides the effect of motivating yourself, there are other benefits like hearing thoughts from someone else that has a neutral view on your progress that can help you to adjust your course when you need it.
Key takeaway: No matter what tasks you struggle with, there are ways that can help you focus on what is important and stay on track. In the end, you just gotta keep in mind that life is all about up and downs and that it’s totally okay to be stuck at some point of your journey.