We all have goals and dreams that we aspire to accomplish in our lives. We have big goals, small goals, and all of the ones in between. Some people are big dreamers that set, (and accomplish), incredibly ambitious goals, while others settle for smaller goals.
There is nothing wrong with living a more modest lifestyle, as long as that is what you truly want. Ambition and success looks different to everyone, and it really cannot be measured or compared. However, it’s important to make sure that you are not settling for safe at the expense of your own happiness.
Sometimes we sell ourselves short because we are afraid of failure. We play it safe and never really find out what we are really capable of achieving. It’s a shame to think of how many people never get to live up to their full potential or achieve their dreams because they can’t get out of their own way.
Here are some thoughts to keep in mind in order to unlock your full potential and achieve more than you ever thought possible.
- Get honest with yourself. Are you where you want to be in life? If not, why not? Are you doing everything possible to achieve your goals? Get real with yourself and get to the bottom of your situation. Be honest with yourself about why you may be holding back or why you may be playing it safe.
- Throw away the excuses. This may help you discover your true ambitions; “What would you do if you weren’t afraid?”. Take some time to free write and jot down what you’d love to accomplish if nothing were standing in your way. Just let your mind run free and don’t think of anything that could or would stand in your way.
- Think about what you really want. Now, look at your notes and think some more. What is it that you really want to do, be or accomplish? Narrow it down to a couple of goals that you really, really want. What has been a goal that you have pushed aside for a long time because you thought it was too far out of reach?
- Weigh out the risks. If you’ve been pushing some goals aside, it’s likely because there are some risks involved. Most things worth working for involve a decent amount of risk. We’re not saying you should just throw caution to the wind, fly through life by the seat of your pants and risk everything to achieve every dream that you have. However, you absolutely should take calculated risks. Weigh out the pros and cons. What’s the worst that can happen? How probable is it? Can you handle the worst-case scenario? What is the best possible outcome? How likely is that? Is it worth the risk?
- Get inspired. Sometimes we need help making a decision or a little shove in the right direction. Seek advice from a qualified, knowledgeable person who has your best interests at heart. Learn as much as you can about the subject. Ignite your passion about your dream. If you’re not internally motivated and thoroughly excited about achieving this goal, you may as well not even begin.
- Make a plan. You can’t just approach a big goal with no plan. A willy-nilly attitude will get you nowhere fast. Goal setting requires step-by-step planning in order to maintain accountability, measurability and motivation.
- Get started. As soon as the plan is set, set the wheels in motion while there is a fire under your butt. Keep the momentum going and your passion alive and you will set the pace for success right from the get-go!
- Make adjustments as needed. Things may not always go as planned, and you will very likely hit bumps in the road. That’s what happens with big goals! Don’t allow yourself to become defeated. “If the plan doesn’t work, change the plan but never the goal.” -unknown
It’s easy to get stuck in our comfort zones and play it safe so we never have to risk experiencing a major failure. However, it is a failure in and of itself to allow ourselves to stagnate and never realize our full potential. Maybe we won’t succeed, but we will have tried, learned and become stronger for having made the journey. Better yet…maybe we will succeed. But we won’t know until we try.
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