Achieving and accomplishing goals, whether they be monetary, health, work, physical or mental are important for living a fulfilled and meaningful life. Moreover, finding ways to stay focused on our goals is a key habit to develop. Furthermore, when we achieve, we feel accomplished and confident. When we feel confident, we are more inspired to continue taking action. Those sometimes arduous or repetitive tasks that we don’t feel like doing yet know are vital to achieve the success we desire. Stacking small wins creates a springboard leverages of each success. How, therefore can we ensure that we are consistent with our actions so we feel accomplished and keep ourselves in momentum every day?
You have probably heard about the compound effect in relation to money right? When I was a kid I was told, ‘Take care of the pennies and the pounds will take care of themselves.’ The same goes for our achievements. When you take care of your small wins, acknowledge and record them, they will grow into greater things.
Here are a few of my suggestions to help you stay focused and taking action towards your goals:
Create a clear vision for your life
Having a destination to head for gives you direction and a clearer purpose to your life. Just like embarking on a long road trip you will have breaks or stops along the way. These breaks are like your goals and targets. Whether it’s to refuel the vehicle, fuel yourself, sightsee or visit friends, a break refreshes you and interrupts the journey, which can become monotonous. Breaks give you something to look forward to along the way, as do goals. Anticipation causes the brain to release a shot of dopamine, which helps keep you motivated and moving forward.
Adopting an attitude of non-negotiable daily practice helps with how to stay focused
Athletes have great discipline. They spend countless hours every day training and practicing their skills. Embracing this mindset is important in all achievements. However, If imagining yourself through the eyes of an athlete, getting up early every day and training religiously isn’t your thing, try this. Adopt the Seinfeld strategy. Although there are conflicting reports about whether or not it is attributed to him, sprinkle this strategy into your life. When you do I guarantee you will accomplish more. Briefly, his strategy is ‘Don’t break the chain.’ When supposedly sharing this with an up and coming comedian, he says:
‘The way to be a better comic is to create better jokes and the way to create better jokes is to write every day. Don’t break the chain.’
Repeat and rinse every day and watch your chain of success grow.
Track Your Wins Daily
When you track your daily wins and tick them off, you will feel better. Possibly proud and accomplished? Your brain loves achieving goals and will send you a shot of dopamine – sometimes called the feel good hormone. When you feel good you are more likely to stay focused and achieve more. Furthermore, we are fundamentally driven by how we feel. And of course, it’s much easier to take action when you are feeling inspired and engaged rather than bored or stressed, isn’t it?
Staying focused on appreciating your successes daily, helps you grow your chain of success. As this grows so does your confidence. Furthermore, you create that essential habit of consistency. Moreover, personal power increases as you start to feel more confident because you trust yourself more. Finally, this strategy helps avoid that dire virus of not doing the things we know we should do.
Knowing what is truly important to you is a key in understanding how to stay focused
When you are clear on your values, and your values align with your goals, it’s easier to stay focused and on track. Taking time to discover your values and ensure they are in alignment with your goals is an investment of time well spent.
I have witnessed many clients shift their perspective and transform their lives merely by working on their values and re-aligning them. Take Jodie for example. Before we met she was struggling to get out of bed early to make exercise part of her life. Working with her on her values led to a major insight. The result – she fell in love with exercising first thing in the morning. This one new habit created a massive positive ripple into many areas of her life.
Creating daily rituals and routines will help you stay focused
While variety is a core need in life, so is certainty. Creating routines leads to habits and habits are the foundation of our success. Furthermore, habits and routines save precious energy for our brain and we can avoid decision fatigue and falling into less than optimal habits. Moreover, finding your own set of keystone habits is a helpful platform for other ones to grow from. When we fall into auto-pilot it’s better to fall into good habits than our old habits that may be pulling us further away from our goals. Changing negative thoughts around the word ‘discipline’ or ‘routine’ maybe helpful to shift current perceptions.
I know from my experience that discipline and routines equal freedom and systems create success. Moreover, success is the result of embracing consistency. Being consistent in actions and thought. Disciplining your mind to stay focused and pay attention is massively important. By embracing these concepts in my life, I radically shifted my negative childhood associations about discipline and conforming, from my schooling experience!
Remember every choice counts and helps you either stay focused or lose focus
In the words of Jeff Olsen who wrote ‘The Slight Edge‘
‘There is no difference in the moment, but every moment matters.’
Every moment you have a choice. It’s easy to do and easy not to do. What will you choose? While neglecting your routines a few times may not make a difference in the short term, over the long term they make a massive difference. They either steer you towards your goals or pull you further away. Each good choice helps program your subconscious mind with positive and clear instructions that keep you on track and heading in the right direction.
Adopt a mindset of incremental improvements
Seek to improve daily with incremental shifts rather than expecting to make massive changes overnight. The Japanese have a word for it, ‘Kaizen’. Continual improvement. To help with this, embrace a habit of self-reflection and awareness. However, please do this through a lens of kindness to self and curiosity.
‘What did you do well?’
‘What didn’t work so well?’
‘What can you change next time?’
Try some reverse thinking. Ask yourself what would you have to do to sabotage your success? This is a question that great businesses ask to see where they could go wrong. To establish what they must avoid, create, maintain or change to achieve the success they desire. Most of us know where we could slip up. By identifying in advance where you could slip up helps you on your quest of how to stay focused. Moreover, it helps you create a counter strategy and bring a new lens of awareness to where you might slip up in the future.
Practice some self compassion and forgiveness
Forgive yourself if you make a mistake or slip up. Know that perfection is not something to strive for. Excellence is. It is how you respond to when you wobble that is important rather than how perfect you perform each day. Finally, find an accountability partner. We are always more likely to show up as our best selves when we have someone else to help hold us accountable.
If you would like some help to achieve your goals and outcomes and desire to be, live and perform at your best, then I invite you to please reach out.
About the Author
Mandy Napier is a Global High Performance Mindset Coach who is dedicated to supporting high achievers fulfil their potential and achieve extraordinary results professionally and personally. Transformations are the norm, and results guaranteed.
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