When babies learn to walk, they are focused on that one task at hand, taking one small baby step. They are persistent and persevere, despite many failed attempts. After each attempt we encourage them to try again and we praise the effort as well as the success. Eventually they are not just walking, they’re running effortlessly. Apply these same principles to achieving your goals and you’ll be off and running in no time!
1. What’s the next step? Now that you know what your goals are, take each one and ask yourself, “What’s the next step?” You don’t have to have the whole plan mapped out, just the next step. What action is required – finding a phone number, making a phone call, searching the internet, discussing a problem with someone, taking 5 minutes to straighten your desk?
2. When will you take that next step? Notice that I didn’t ask when you will achieve your goal. I just asked when you will make time to take that step. How long will it take you? One minute, 5 minutes, 30 minutes, an hour? Put it on your calendar, daily task list, or group it with similar tasks you’re already planning. If it’s a difficult task, schedule it when you have the most energy.
3. Take that baby step! Here comes the hard part for most people – just doing it! We find a million excuses to put it off because we just don’t have time. The reality is that many baby steps take less than 2 minutes to accomplish. Remember, they’re baby steps.
4. Give yourself credit. You did it! You took the first baby step toward reaching your goal. Did you give yourself an “atta-girl” or ‘atta-boy” for your success? Doing something, taking one baby step, just took you one step closer to reaching your goal.
5. Evaluate and repeat. Okay, what happened? Did you successfully complete the task or do you need to try again or do something else? Keep the momentum going and go back to the top. What’s the next step?