To know how to focus on goals is to build the strength to rely on yourself and believe in yourself. But everyone has good days and bad days. Just a little unlucky event can easily crush your motivation sometimes, and it's hard to stay positive especially if you work from home and have no one around you to support you. Here are 8 tips to help you keep focusing on your goals and make your ultimate dream a success.
#1 Create A Success Planner
First and foremost, you really should write down your goals, whether they're short term or long term, simple or complex. Because you can easily drift away if you're merely and vaguely thinking about what to achieve. You might think you know all your goals by heart. But we humans are very good at interpreting words of promises in the most convenient way we want. If you don't keep proof of your determination with you, it'll be so easy for you to forget or change your mind. Your "Success Planner" can look like this;
(1) Your final goal
What you want to achieve (e.g. Earn online affiliate sales of $10,000 every month.)
(2) Why you're trying to achieve your goal
The reason should be for your own benefit because this planner is being made for yourself. If this is for someone else for example, "I want to earn $10k every month so that my 8 years old son can have a more comfortable life in years to come."
But your son is not you. What do YOU want to get from this? Then your answer may be; "My son is the single most important thing in my life. I'll get nothing but a joy by making sure that he has a happy life."
(3) Set detailed goals
Make a lot of sub-goals to achieve your final big goal, and set a timescale on each goal. The sub-goals can include some milestones; a milestone is a significant stage during development. A point where you feel that you've come closer to your final goal. For example;
- Make the first $100 sale by the end of October.
- Build an email list to over 5,000 subscribers by April.
- Monthly income to reach $2,000 in 6 months from now.
- Be able to quit the day job by Christmas, etc.
(4) Plan your tasks
Now your goal and sub-goals are clear, list up things to be done to achieve each goal. Each task should be categorized as monthly, weekly, bi-weekly (if needed), daily, and ad-hoc/as and when basis. For example;
- Monthly: Send monthly bonus offer email on 1st of each month.
- Weekly: Use $50 each week on Facebook ads.
- Daily: "Like" and reply to all the retweets by my followers.
You can create as many tasks as you can manage. This section should be freely editable; add new tasks and delete what's no longer required or hasn't worked out periodically.
(5) List up things to be ignored
Some things should be ignored because there's nothing you can do about them. Write them down and learn not to think about them until they're sorted (see #8 below).
Don't make your Success Planner too complicated! Make it easy to view, so that you can check back at any time and monitor your progress.
#2 Think Big
Now you've broken down your goals and set out your task plan. Go back to see the bigger picture again. By achieving your goal, how will your perspective change? When your current final goal's achieved, what will your next goal be, can you think of it? Can you see yourself in 5 years time? (Like you get asked at a job interview!) If you can't, never need to worry, because a long term strategy can often benefit companies, but not individuals as much.
Planning so much in detail for so far ahead can end up in a waste of time because you never know if your life takes an unexpected turn - for the better - at any time. Just don't lose yourself in your daily "to do" lists, but keep reminding yourself to think big.
#3 Monitor Your Progress Regularly
You want to make sure you're working towards your goals according to the "Planner" that you made. Analyze your progress on a daily basis, and if a task listed in your Planner is not feasible, you need to have a think again; is this task necessary to achieve your goals? If so is there an alternative method?
#4 Visualize Your Success
Visualization is a great motivational driver. Every day, visualize a position where you've already achieved your goal and picture yourself enjoying the success. It will keep you focused and believing in yourself.
Related Article: Law of Attraction for Money
#5 Get The Hardest Things Out Of The Way First
Do the most difficult things first in the morning, because procrastination can ruin your day. You leave it until the end of the day and you'll worry about it until you actually start working on it. Then you'll either find yourself working late at night, or end up delaying it until the next day. Do the hardest work first, get it out of the way, then it's done.
#6 Eliminate Distractions
f you stop and think about what distracts you during the day, and perhaps write down the list of it, you'll be able to plan to make your day a lot more productive in order to focus on goals. Typical distractors/time wasters include;
(1) Messages from others (work related)
In this day and age - why on earth would anyone have to phone you out of the blue to discuss business, when there are plenty of other options such as emails, SMS and other messenger apps? Unless you're advertising to say "call me anytime", people who are not aware that a phone call can disrupt your busy schedule are being inconsiderate, don't you think?
Messages from others include phone calls, via email, chat (Skype, Messenger), and via social media. By all means, it does depend on the type of job and how you want to treat your valued customers. I personally wouldn't like to keep anyone waiting, therefore I'd always respond as quickly as I can to maintain the trust relationship. But I don't offer anyone to speak to me real-time unless we agree in advance.
You can set a rule on yourself, such as open your mail application only in the afternoon / every 2 hours, avoid chat apps if you can, and keep your phone on silent mode, etc.
(2) Messages from your friends and family
For the same reason above, you can tell your personal friends and family to contact you via a particular social media account, which you have access throughout the day because your phone "is usually switched off" for example.
(3) Background noise - radio, TV, music
A particular type of your favorite music can help you focus on your work, while others can distract you. Talk on the radio and TV - you know they should be avoided.
(4) Your work environment
Make sure your home office is suitable for you to work - an environment that's too cold/hot, too bright/dark, too noisy (or too quiet!) will distract you. Keep your desk clean and tidy. A good chair is needed. Get a footrest or armrest if you think they'll help. Invest money on proper equipment, e.g. fast and reliable internet connection.
(5) Your physical condition
Have a good sleep at night, eat healthily, and get some exercise!
#7 Ask For Help
You can't always do absolutely everything on your own to achieve your goals. If you have your personal mentor or someone close to you who's an expert in the same field, then you have an option to ask. But if you don't, don't be afraid to seek out for help.
But remember, experts will be happy to help you only if you are polite to them. Start your message or email by asking them how they are first, then tell them about your problem briefly. Don't forget to thank them. Don't just keep questioning and leave. They may be ignoring your message because;
- Your message is abrupt and it's all about YOU trying to suck the information out of them, or
- You say "Hello, how are you?" and not getting to the point. They don't have time to reply "Hello, I'm fine" to what looks like an unsolicited sales message.
#8 Ignore Things That You Can't Control
There's no point worrying about things that are beyond your control. List them up in your Success Planner (#1, point 5) as and when. Think if there are any alternative methods if it's in the way and if there isn't, you know you just have to leave it until it's sorted itself. Examples would be;
- You've asked a contractor to do a job but you're not sure of the quality until it's completed.
- You want to buy a tool which is useful to achieve your goal, but it's far too expensive for you right now.
- Someone's upset with you but it's not your fault. You've done everything to mend the relationship, explained and even apologized, and he/she is still upset.
How To Focus On Goals
Life always has its ups and downs. You can't keep yourself motivated at all times - nobody can. When you've managed to get through a bad day, that's a job well-done for you, and you know there's always tomorrow. I hope that the above tips will help you keep yourself on track all the way and achieve your goals with great success.