7 Practical Steps to Take When You Have Too Many Goals
Do you ever feel like you’re spinning in circles with too many goals? Are some or maybe even most of them conflicting?
When you think about the goals you have, some that you’ve made progress on, some that just sit there–does it feel overwhelming to you?
The good news is, you’re not the only one who feels that way. It’s very common, and we can help solve the problem.
There are so many things we each want to accomplish in our lifetimes. The problem we often face is having too many goals to try to accomplish at one time. This can be detrimental to our success and something to avoid.
If you follow the follow seven simple steps you can get your goals under control and accomplish more than ever before.
Here are some things you can do if you’re overwhelmed with goals.
1. Look for overlaps.
Sometimes there is a natural and logical relationship between goals. Suppose you want to get healthier and to have more leisure time. Making time out for active leisure like tennis or running will accomplish both goals at once.
Sometimes two goals seem to be in direct opposition to each other, like wanting to travel and having more time at home. In this case, write out both goals and next to each of them write out why you want to do each of them. You might find that what you want is to be away from work. In this case, your real goal might be to change careers. Or, you might discover that you can satisfy your desire for travel with a short vacation or a long drive with the family. Get to the essence of the goal, how they really relate to your values, and they’ll work themselves out.
2. Make the time.
We tell ourselves there are “only so many hours in a day,” and that we’re “too busy” to take on anything else right now. Your time is precisely that – yours.
Instead of saying “I don’t have time to learn a language,” try saying, “I’m not making time to learn a new language.”
We find the time for the things that matter.
3. Be flexible.
It’s a good thing to put a timeline together and have definite dates and time-sensitive goals. But remember that life happens, and often it even gets in the way. There is an ancient Greek saying that goes: “If you want to make the gods laugh, tell them your plans.” Having milestones and plotting points along the timeline is good, but don’t hold yourself to it so rigidly that you cannot adapt to the occasional curveball.
4. Know your goals and be specific
We all have things that we want to accomplish, but we don’t always take the time to be specific in what we know and understand the goals to be. Having money is a goal but it is not as effective as having the goal of $10,000 a month in passive income. You need to take the time to really get clear and specific on each of your goals. List your goals out and keep adjusting them until you think they are as clear and specific as they can be. Always make them specific in time, amount, color, make, model etc. Anywhere you can be specific about it will help you to be able to achieve the goal easier.
I know, I get it — all of your goals are important to you. But you must decide which are the most important to you. Take your list of goals and sort them from highest to lowest priority. This list should be based on where they rank in importance to you. This list, once it is ranked, is not necessarily the order in which we are going to work on the goals, it is just for you to gain even more clarity to know exactly what is most important to you and what you should always be keeping as top areas of focus.
Look for contingencies. Sometimes we think we have multiple goals, but one thing leads to another. Which of your goals are “linchpin goals.” Linchpin goals are goals that make achieving other goals easier. For example, people who stop smoking often then find it much easier to work on other aspects of their health. After they stop smoking, it seems to clear the path for them to eat healthier and start working out.
6. Have a singular focus
Once you have taken the time to prioritize and know what goals are most important it is time to start focusing on one at a time.
The key to success in life is that you are able to avoid the trap of multitasking and stay focused on one task at a time. This does not mean you have to only pursue one goal at a time, it means when you are working you are working on one goal at a time. Get traction toward a goal so that your motivation is boosted, and to the point where the actions you take toward that goal have become part of your day — habits. When you reach that point, you can safely start to work on another, preferably related, goal. If you can stay focused, not allow yourself to be distracted, and do one goal at a time you can be successful.
7. Break goals into manageable parts
Once you know your goals, have them prioritized and have singular focus, you then have the possibility of using the secret to success to your benefit. The secret is not trying to achieve your goals in one lump sum. Some of your goals could take years to achieve, and often people quit because the enormity of the size of their goals overwhelms them. The find them too big to achieve and they decide to back down. This does not need to happen. The key to success is to take the time to break your goals into yearly goals, then break those down into monthly goals, then break those down into daily goals. This makes the dream of achieving your goals more manageable because you just have to take simple small steps every day. This you can do, especially if you are singular focused on getting each of these daily goals achieved.
There’s lots of bad goal attainment advice out there — look for a trusted source to help guide you.
If it feels to you like you have too many goals or if the ones you do have are fighting each other, then find the essence of each one. That will help you determine what’s most important to you right now. Then work on one goal at a time. By concentrating on which one means the most to you right now, you’ll put those goals into perspective, until they don’t seem like so much anymore.
So do not let yourself get overwhelmed, Your dreams are manageable and achievable as long as you take the previous four steps. Being overwhelmed is far too common, but does not have to be reality for you.
Prioritize, make time, be flexible and manage your goals to succeed. I wanna see you making THIS face: