I am a master procrastinator. Wait, make that a master productive procrastinator (it’s a thing, really). In fact, in the process of writing this post I’ve managed to work on my website, update my analytics, make sure my tenants are paying their utility bills, touch base with the property manager, pay my rent, begin a google ad campaign, connect a buyer client to an interior designer, let my dog out, give my cat some love, and follow a new swath of folk on Instagram, among other things (I may have looked up the members of After 7). None of that was on my list for today. You know what is not only on my list, but is a big rock for today? Writing this post.
This post was supposed to be a how-to about writing goals, not figuring out how to do everything but that. But maybe the real gold here is looking at why we avoid doing the things we actually want to do, the stepping stones that help us reach the big goals, and why we set goals that are either too small or unrealistic.
Are you afraid to fail or are you afraid to succeed?
Fear of failure leads to small goals you’ll reach easily, but which won’t take you very far and certainly not beyond your comfort zone. Like the life you have now? Good because you’re not going anywhere else. There’s comfort in familiarity, but there’s not much curiosity, discovery, or growth. You’re capable of so much more. Trust me, no one cares if you stumble on your way (they’re too busy focused on themselves to notice you).
Fear of success also keeps you small, but carries a host of other fun things like judgement, jealousy, victimhood, and maybe some martyrdom sprinkled in for good measure. Fun! Who wants to watch others doing what they dream of doing, but don’t act on themselves? That’s fertile ground for feeling better about yourself by making others seem small. Or maybe you go all the way to the finish line, stopping short for some very important reason. What would happen if you actually succeeded? What are you afraid of losing? Time? Energy? Freedom? Flexibility? Stop thinking you’re not in control of your life and cross the finish line. Be motivated by those achieving the success you want. Study them and then do it better.
What beliefs do you need to let go of in order to become the version of yourself you want to be? Do you think you’re not good enough? That you’re a failure? That things never work out for you? That you don’t deserve the things you want? That if you succeed you won’t like yourself?
What limiting beliefs are you holding onto about money? Is it the root of all evil? Does money turn people rotten? Do you never have enough? Always blow your budget? Barely scrape by? Constantly make poor decisions when spending? Maybe you believe money doesn’t actually matter to you. Or that to make lots of money you have to sacrifice who you are. Or to be financially successful you have to work very hard all the time and you’ll never have time for anything but work.
You get to define success. You get to choose what your life looks like.
Want to be a top producer, but don’t want your business to take over your life? Boundaries are beautiful things (so are assistants and teammates). Want to define success as something other than sales volume? Set up systems to run your business more efficiently and get some breathing room to do the things that really excite you. Want to finally break through that invisible wall you keep running up against? Work more on how you talk to yourself than how you talk to clients.
The key to setting big ass scary and exciting goals is to put some purpose in them. I promise I’ll get to the how-to before the new year, but before you begin writing them out, think about the areas of your life you want to work on in the coming year, or years to come.
You are not a one dimensional being. To focus on growing only one dimension of yourself does you no favors. To begin figuring out what areas of yourself need some love and attention, fill out the Wheel of Life Balance worksheet.
I’ll pick up from here in a day or three -- but first let me make a new playlist to help me write, watch a Masterclass or two, make pasta from scratch, create a bank of social media posts, and get a jump on spring cleaning by wiping down my baseboards.
By the way, once I got going this took all of about an hour to write but it was 3-4 hours in production. But I got it done today and I'm calling that a win.