How to achieve more with less
Imagine this: You wake up early. The whole day is ahead of you and there are so many things you want to do. So many possibilities. During the day you are swamped with work. Running from meeting to meeting, replying emails on the go. But when at the end of the day you get home and shut the doors closed this strange feeling starts creeping in. As busy as you were, you were not truly productive.
Sounds maybe familiar?
Living in this time and age and having this huge amount of options can sometimes be a curse rather than a blessing. Did you know that studies start to show that having more options does not always equal more liberty and happiness? Having plenty of options can actually cause frustration (“Oh God, have I chosen the right thing? What if I should have gone for the other one?”) and sometimes it can even paralyze you so you end up not choosing anything.
Now you might be asking where am I heading with this?
With the new year approaching there will be a lot of discussion about resolutions, people determined to make radical changes in their lives starting big but quitting shortly after. Let me therefore dedicate this post to the widely discussed topic of goal setting.
Before we dive in I would like you to know that this article will not provide 10, 15, or even 35 fresh new tips on how to achieve your goals!
Rather I am going to stick to one magical number. The number THREE.
The illness of our modern age is the excess of possible distractions. And I am not talking only about your phone beeping every few minutes while you’re trying to concentrate on the report you need to finish by tonight.
I am talking about distractions that pull you away from your course.
Mostly it is the intelligent and hard-working women who want to achieve so much that they say yes to every project and opportunity that comes their way. And at the end of the day / year / a decade they might come to the bitter realization that they were just bouncing from one thing to another, never really mastering or giving full attention to either of them.
To avoid this from happening I would like to introduce you to the very simple method that was introduced to me by Dr. Ned Hallowell in an interview with Marie Forleo. And has worked for me better than any other method, tip or manual.
The action plan
I want you to set three clear and specific goals- goals for today, for the week, for 6 months and for your lifetime. And bear with me, please, I’ll explain soon why this works magic.
Start with defining your 3 lifetime goals. It can be anything. Take your time, don’t rush it, I want these 3 goals to set your soul on fire when you only think about them. And please- THINK BIG. There are no limits to your greatness but the ones you set for yourself.
What impact would you like to have? As whom you would like to be remembered by your close ones? By the public? Do you want be a world-known speaker? Run your own company? Be an excellent parent/partner/friend? Put it on the paper.
Once you have your three lifetime goals written down, it is time to come up with the action plan.
What can you do to be closer to your lifetime goal? Maybe you need to learn a new language. Maybe you need to do more networking. Visit that course. Publish that paper. Create that website. Whatever it is, you know the best. Make it one of your three 6 months goals.
Then every Sunday take a moment to think about the three things you can achieve this week to (and I think you get the idea now) be closer to your 6 months goals and to your lifetime goals.
And finally I want you to keep setting three goals for each day. Focus on achieving maximum three things. It can be less but it definitely should not be more.
The word that makes the world spin: NO
What this method does is that it keeps you on track. It helps you realize what is truly important to you and what is, well, just a distraction. And especially now when we are being shown through social media all the different paths we could be taking, all the different styles of life we could be leading, all the different places we could be living in.
Reminding yourself of what you’re striving for and who you truly are will help you stay focused and on the right path. It will make it easier to say “no” to distractions.
I am not telling you to stop saying no to new opportunities. I just want to make sure you spend your time doing the things that are important to you. Great achievement take time and don’t come easy.
Let’s make the 2019 the year of clarity, simplicity and focus.