As an ambitious professional or visionary entrepreneur, you may find yourself struggling to achieve your goals. But the problem may not be you – it may be how you see your goals.
Often, we set out to accomplish something like wanting to start a business or become financially independent. But, there's a problem with those goals, they are too vague and lack a way to track progress.
In order to achieve any goal you only need two things:
A narrow frame of reference
A visual way to measure progress
Narrow Your Focus
By narrowing your focus and being very specific in defining what kind of business you want to start, or what financial independence looks like to you, you will improve your success rate. You'll be able to communicate your vision, improve collaboration, and attract resources to help you achieve your objective.
Three years ago, I mentored a young man who had a vision of “being in business.” After talking with him, I discovered that in his culture, being a “businessman” was highly regarded. However, the term “business” is very broad.
We worked together to define what kind of business he wanted to start – was it a restaurant, did he want to make a product, or provide a service? Once we had his vision in focus, we were able to clarify his plan and how he would monitor his progress. He also considered any obstacles that could potentially steer him off course.
By narrowing his focus he was able to control his frame of reference. We were able to improve his ability to communicate his vision, improve collaboration, and attract resources to his business. Now, he and his partners have a successful company that provides a service to the global hospitality industry and have attracted resources to start-up funding.
Visualize Progress to Increase Motivation
According to research by social psychologist Emily Balcetis, visualizing progress towards our goals can increase our motivation and drive to achieve them. When we see our progress in a tangible form, it helps us to better understand how far we've come and how much further we need to go.
One way to make your progress visual is to create a progress dashboard. This can be a physical or digital tool that you use to track your progress and visualize your goals.
A progress dashboard can include different sections, such as a to-do list, a calendar, and a progress tracker. You can list your major goals in one section, and then break them down into smaller, achievable steps in another section. You can use the calendar to schedule deadlines and milestones for each goal, and use the progress tracker to monitor your progress and see how far you've come.
Having all of your progress in one place will help you stay organized and motivated. It will give you a clear picture of how your progress is coming along and how much further you need to go increasing our motivation to reach it.
I used this framework when I decided to go back to school and finish my degree. Each term, I would begin by narrowing my focus to only the courses in that semester. Once I had my focus, I created more clarity by developing my plan for the semester and setting up how I would monitor my progress.
I created a plan to not only do the work, but how I performed on assignments, and exams. I knew exactly where I stood at all times.
I controlled my frame of reference by continually looking at my plan and my progress. I would visualize success through each term. Even when obstacles came along, like the pandemic, and a medical emergency that required surgery toward the end of my second to last semester, I was able to bring in the support of my professors and classmates and together we accomplished our individual and collective goals.
The process is completely transferable and I’ve used it successfully to help my clients achieve financial stability and grow their business. If you want to achieve your goals and take your business to the next level, I invite you to book a free consultation.
Together, we can clarify your vision, create a plan, and monitor your progress to help you achieve success. Don’t let vague goals hold you back – take control of your focus and see your dreams come to fruition.