Holding yourself accountable for every goal you’ve set is a means of telling the universe that the goal is important to you. It is not something you are undecided about, but something you really want. Not making provisions to hold yourself accountable shows you are not serious. It is often very easy to let your dreams go as a result of being overwhelmed, but an accountability system ensures you stay on track and get the desired result.
Anyone can do this. So, how do you do it?
- Stick to a Schedule
A common error is to set a deadline for ourselves to achieve a goal. We set these deadlines without paving a way to realize our goals by the set date. We are so engrossed with the desired outcome that we forget that a goal is achieved through a series of related processes. Whatever it is that we wish, dream of, or think about has no influence if there is no commitment to achieving steady progress. Things do not just happen magically; you must realize that it all starts with you.
Sticking to a schedule is essential; you cannot avoid it. A schedule forms the basis of your game plan and helps you evaluate how consistent you are toward your goal. A great schedule should be clearly designed and time-focused within reasonable and attainable limits. It will help you scale up smaller goals and translate bigger ones into actionable steps.
- Be Honest with Yourself
Everyone has something to offer. Still, we cannot be experts in every field. For instance, some people are more comfortable channeling their thoughts via writing, and struggle with in-person conversation, while for others it is the other way around. Setting goals in areas of weakness will be counterproductive. Ensure that you set goals that develop and emphasize your strengths, as well as relegate your weaknesses.
Making an honest appraisal of yourself involves identifying your talents and shortcomings, and accepting what works best for you under certain conditions. Knowing your limits will set you up for success in realizing your goals.
- Break Down Your Goals
When I speak of breaking down your goals, I do not refer to tossing your dreams aside or dreaming less. After all, we are all encouraged to dream big and you really should. You are the only one who knows the exact extent of your dream, and you have set out to see it through. But even when you have a schedule in place to actualize the process, you may still feel overwhelmed by the huge size of the task. Don’t worry; this is a phase we all go through.
Picture your dream as a high mountain that you want to climb. Often, when people look at the mountain they have to climb, they plunge into deep procrastination as a result of the overwhelming outlook of what they have to do. Resist such an urge, and make yourself accountable by easing the workload. This is possible by taking baby steps in the direction of your goal. This can be done by splitting each segment into “micro-goals.” Each large task taking you in the direction of the goal can be broken down into small, progressive units in your schedule. You must keep slicing your goals into small chunks until they are easy to carry out.
- Overcome Self-Sabotage
Our mind is a great tool that affects the outcome of our goals. Just as the subconscious layer of the mind can map things out for us, it can also limit our success. The fear of leaving our comfort zone is self-destructive and a dream killer. It is something you must be wary of. If you have fallen victim to a failed dream or ambition in the past by not following through on your goals, you might have a feeling of self-sabotage. But this feeling does not have to be repetitive. Being accountable will help you understand the actions that impede your progress. By identifying negative patterns, you will effectively overcome self-sabotage.
- Have a Partner
This idea has been floated throughout this chapter, but what hasn’t been mentioned is the dynamics involved in the partner role. You may easily conclude from what has been said that the accountability partner is a one-way street. That is not true—an accountability partner will drive you toward your goals, and you will do so for them in return. Instead of letting commitment slide by going solo in pursuing your goals, an accountability partner will help infuse consistency into your execution. A good partner brings commitment to the table. If the person you’ve partnered with is not reliable, then you should look elsewhere.
- Identify Your “Why”
To hold yourself accountable to your goals, you must have a clear reason why the goal matters to you. How will reaching the goal add value to your existence, or to those around you? What is its purpose? Understanding the motivations behind each goal you set will improve your accountability to it.
Keep your “why” at the top of your mind when embarking on the micro-steps leading to your goal. Continue educating yourself on the objectives of the goal and avoid acting contrary to it. Fill your mind with positivity by acquiring information and knowledge that will build your reasons for having the goal.
No matter our personality, past achievements or status, we all need a system to help us account for our pursuits. Procrastination is a goal-killer that is always ready to pounce on productivity. So, if you are intent on getting things done, you must not overlook the need to hold yourself accountable to your goals regardless of your status in life.
Excerpted from The Real Estate Investing Diet: Harnessing Health Strategies to Build Wealth in Ninety Days.
Written by André Stewart.
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