You made your long-term and short-term goals for the year—that’s step one. But following through with said mission … that’s where commitment and ambition step in. We recently shared why the most successful people make S.M.A.R.T. goals and how to have a practical plan to concretely move the needle forward (read more about this theory here).
To build on the topic and encourage you to cross the finish line—whether it’s a relationship, career, or fitness intention—we asked Teneshia Jackson Warner, author of The Big Stretch, to weigh in on the main things that hold people back from achieving their desired goals.
“A lack of connecting the goal with a bigger vision or dream for your life. Oftentimes, we will have a goal, but if it is not tied to a bigger vision, it’s easier for that objective to fall to the wayside. For example, I kicked off the year with a goal to lose 15 pounds. The intention alone is not enough to keep me motivated to eat healthily and work out consistently. However, if I can connect the goal of losing weight with a vision to be a healthy wife for my husband, a healthy CEO for my team, and even a healthy caretaker for my mom and grandmother, then I will be more inclined to keep it. By connecting the ambition with a bigger ‘why,’ I’m more likely to stay focused and committed for the long term.”
“Failure to break the goal down into smaller achievable tasks. We have all heard the adage that Rome was not built in a day. For many of us, we can’t expect to accomplish the goal in a day either. Instead, we need to break the goal down into achievable and measurable actions. For example, perhaps you want to land your dream job this year. This goal can be broken down into actions such as starting the job search, enrolling with a recruiter to assist in finding the perfect match, connecting with your professional network, and lastly starting to interview.”
“The absence of an accountability partner. I’m a firm believer that dreamers don’t let other dreamers dream alone. When accomplishing a significant goal, it can be lonely. There is nothing like having a network, champion, or colleague to share your achievement progress with along the way. Even more important is an accountability partner. This is an individual whom you share your intentions with and ask to hold you accountable to do what you say you are going to do.”
“Lack of true COMMITMENT to the goal. This holdback is pretty straightforward. Although it is the most apparent holdback to our ambitions, it’s one of the hardest to conquer. Commitment means consistently put in the hard work that it takes to obtain your goal—the persistence, dedication, long nights, sweat, and more. It means you are determined to fight the giants that stand between you and your dream. You will NOT give up until the GOAL is reached.”
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