“The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step”
– Lao Tzu
Whatever you want to accomplish in your life, no matter how big, always comes down to small daily actions. And then continuing to take small actions consistently.
So here are 5 points to help you move towards your goals every day:
1. Forget ‘magic pills’, focus on long-term results
Don’t look for ‘magic pills’ that promise to solve your problems overnight. We all want to get results as quickly as possible. But as a result we often set ourselves up for failure by having unrealistically high expectations of ourselves. And then we are frustrated when we don’t see the results that we want. Instead, of looking for ‘magic pills’, focus on taking small action every single day that will guarantee results in the long term.
2. Review & visualize your vision statements daily
Every day spend a few minutes reviewing the vision statements of your ideal life. As you read each statement, close your eyes for a few seconds and imagine how great you would feel if your vision was a reality today. This daily process will keep you motivated and provide a daily reminder of what’s really important in your life.
3. Identify your top 3 small daily actions
Always start your day by identifying your top 3 actions for the day. Ideally, you should focus on actions that move you towards your most important goal. This won’t always be possible, since we also have to deal with the daily demands of our work and personal lives. But at the very least, make sure that one of your 3 big daily actions will help you get closer to one of your goals. Do this every single day without fail and you will be amazed how much progress you will make over time.
4. Work on one new habit at a time
Every month pick one new habit to work on — just one. Don’t try to do more than that. I spent years trying to build lots of new habits all at the same time, but failed over and over again. It was the same story every time. I would make a list of several new habits that I wanted to build and would get started working on ALL of them immediately. I would do great for a few days, but after a week or two, I’d find myself falling back to my old habits. If you want to succeed then do less and focus on building one habit at a time.
For example, I’ve always hated eating vegetables. Last year, I decided that I wanted to start drinking green veggie juice every day. I decided that this was the only habit I would focus on for the next 30 days. It’s now been over 6 months and not only do I still drink green juice every day, I actually love it. I wish I had decided to to adopt this principle of “just one habit at a time” decades ago. But it’s never too late to start.
5. Take small actions consistently on a daily basis
Many people want to get results really fast and sometimes believe that big actions will result in overnight success. But long term and sustainable results come from taking small and consistent daily actions over the long term and slowly turning those daily actions into daily habits.
For example, you could decide that you want to improve your health. Even if you could go running for 7 hours today, it’s very unlikely that you’d get your desired results overnight. Instead you could decide to run for just 15 minutes every day for the next month and be far more likely to improve your health and also build the habit of running every day. And those 15 minutes could easily turn into 30 minutes or more if you continued running every day.
What one simple action will you take today and for the next 30 days that moves you towards you goals?