One of the most difficult questions that I get from my coaching clients is how to ensure follow-through with tasks and goals. I get it. It’s hard to keep up a steady stream of energy and motivation to complete all the steps that are necessary for getting to the finish line of achieving the final goal. I tell my clients that it’s a journey and not a sprint. And with all journeys, there are bumps along the road. This has nothing to do with a client’s talent, skill and intelligence. It has to do with the natural ebb and flow of motivation.
We all face difficulties in achieving tasks. Some are easier and can be crossed off our to-do list quickly. Others take more time, planning and resources. But you can start the process and evaluate the goal before you start. When you take an honest look at the reasons for wanting the goal in the first place and gain deeper understanding of your motivations, then you have a better chance with follow-through on daily tasks that are involved in completing your goals.
A key exercise that I give to my coaching clients before we undertake the process of going after the goal is to evaluate the goal itself. Once these questions are answered, then can we begin the journey together without surprises, which limits the road-blocks along the way.
The First Step to Be Successful on Achieving Goals: Get Real and Honest
The first step to getting a goal accomplished is asking a key question, which is:
“What’s right and what needs to change in this situation?”
All change starts with being honest with yourself. The best way to bring up the truth about your state of mind is to ask yourself uncomfortable questions. Tap into your emotion of pain of what may not be fulfilling or what may be irritating to you. If you’re like most people, then you tend to repress feelings of pain until they can no longer be ignored.
At this point, where ever you are with the challenges of the situation, you have to make a choice whether to change the situation or let things fall apart around you. If you take no action, then perhaps you are living with an unrealistic thought that “maybe it will go away”, which can happen in rare cases or an unrealistic thought that with luck, it will magically be fixed.
Ask Deeper Questions
On the other hand, if you want to move in a direction of positive change and learn the steps to face difficulty at present and for future problems, then ask yourself more questions to get to the root of the problem. These questions can look like:
- What is causing the frustration?
- Are you feeling overwhelmed or unable to focus on the problem?
- What small step could make it better?
- What’s missing?
- Will accomplishing this goal make it better? What impact will occur if you take action?
Don’t Be Afraid of Looking the Pain Points
If you’re like most people, you avoid pain at all costs and run towards pleasure. I’m not saying that you should live in discomfort all the time, but it is worthy to spend some energy trying to get the root of your pain. And more importantly, realize that understanding the reason for achieving a goal will help to solve the emotional suffering that exists at this very moment in your life. Once you get clarity around these questions, then you will understand the motivation to make changes in your life in order to reach the goal.
Once you have the clarity based on real, honest fact-finding about the reason for achieving goals, then you will have the potential that your follow-through on taking action steps will be successful. If you clearly can see the importance and value of finishing all the small steps along the way, then you won’t be challenged by the road blocks that will come up and impede your progress.
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