Updated: March 12, 2022
It was one of our assignments in high school. Our English teacher wanted us to write a book review of The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry.
She didn’t just want us to write a summary of the story and give the lessons of the novel. She particularly wanted us to share how we plan to apply the book’s lessons in our lives.
One of the many life lessons from there, that I still cherish today, was the quote, “A goal without a plan is just a wish.”
It was then that I realized why it’s easy and free for everyone to daydream and wish for a better life because the real cost comes in our willingness to create and follow a plan.
But how exactly do you start at developing your plan? Here are five tips that can help you make those steps today and kickstart your journey to reaching your dreams.
1. Have SMART goals.
SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-bound.
Don’t just say you want to become rich. Or you want to see and travel the world. Put details, numbers, and dates to your goals.
For instance, your goal can be to have P1 million in your bank account after 5 years. Or saving P50,000 for a trip to South Korea to watch a BTS concert next summer.
Make your goals SMART because studies show that those who do, have a higher chance of achieving them.
2. Divide your goal into smaller tasks.
We often procrastinate because our mind wants to avoid working on a difficult goal. That’s why breaking down the things we need to do into smaller pieces can help us get work done.
If your goal is to write a novel, then it helps to just first enumerate all the smaller steps that will bring you to that goal.
Start by writing a one-page summary of the story, then develop the profiles of the character. Next, plot the timeline and main events of the story, and so on.
Once you’re ready to write the actual novel, instead of sitting down to write a whole chapter, simply tell yourself you’ll try to write as much as you can in the next 2 hours.
This way, your goal has become input-based (work for 2 hours) instead of output-based (write one whole chapter), which is easier to manage.
3. Be comfortable with uncertainty.
Life is unpredictable. No matter how good our plan may be, there will be unexpected challenges that will come along the way.
Don’t let this uncertainty stop you from taking action. Because as much as there could be obstacles along the way, there are also as many lessons you’ll learn.
There will always be tools you can use, resources you can tap, and even friends and mentors you’ll meet in your journey that will help you in reaching your goals.
4. Grow your finances.
There is a cost to achieving our dreams. Aside from time and effort, the reality is there is a tag price to our goals.
The dream car, family home, ultimate vacation – you need money to reach your dreams.
Tracking and minimizing your expenses is where you start. Afterward, you then find ways to get additional income.
Fortunately, there are many ways you can earn extra money these days. You can sell online, offer freelancing services, or do online trading and investing.
5. Show up every day.
There’s a reason why it’s called a journey. Reaching your goals requires patience, determination, and persistence because success doesn’t happen overnight.
The best you could do is to show up every day.
Do what you can every day, no matter how small it may seem. Because all the little things you do daily will build and eventually compound to help you reach your goals.
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