Strategies to Make the Leap From Dreams, to Goals, to Reality

When you aspire to live your best life, getting there requires setting new goals. Sometimes,
there is a disconnect between setting goals and actually meeting them, though. Between stress,
financial constraints, and everyday life, it often feels as though something stands in your way.
Whether you’re a business owner or busy in the professional world, what you really need are
strategies to break those barriers and make your goals happen.

Focus on How
Simply setting goals is only the first step to getting where you want to be. When you write out
your goals, you also want to explore why they matter. This exercise is important because the
motivation behind your goals is part of what keeps you going. To really delve into why your
goals matter, visualize the result that will come from achieving them. Don’t skip this step, but
don’t stop here either. Once you know why, put some thought and strategy into how you will
work toward your goals.

You may have heard of setting SMART goals, but Entrepreneur recommends taking it a step
further and making your goals SMARTER. This acronym stands for how you set and work
towards your goals. You want them to be Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time-
Bound, Evaluated, and Re-adjusted. Doing this allows you to keep goals right in front of you at
all times. Break them down into daily to-dos and always track your progress.

Finances Form the Foundation
Whatever your business goals are, getting your finances in order is a crucial foundation.
Budgeting, prioritizing and staying organized can help set you up for success. Nerdwallet
recommends monitoring and categorizing expenses so you know exactly where your money is
going, which can help you stay on track to reach your financial goals.

You also want to be knowledgeable about your current financial situation so you’re prepared for
the future. Your financial future is often dependent on credit, especially for small business
owners. Repair your credit and pay off debt to keep your credit score appealing for when you
need more capital down the road.

Examine Your Habits
What you do on a daily basis impacts every aspect of your life, including what you accomplish.
Having measurable goals that you break into daily tasks is a start, but you will be more
successful at accomplishing these tasks when you also take a good look at your daily habits. If
you have bad habits, such as procrastinating or staying up too late, work on eliminating those
one by one. Replace them with good habits that become part of your daily routine. Good daily
habits like time management, exercise, and having some down time not only make you more
productive but they also reduce stress. Lower stress makes you even more productive, creating
a positive cycle that serves your overall goals.

Working on daily habits gets back to the importance of tracking your progress, which helps you
see daily, weekly, monthly, and even yearly accomplishments. If it isn’t so easy to see your
progress, try using an app that keeps track for you, keeping you accountable while also giving
you visible outcomes.

Keep in mind that, when it comes to achieving goals, habits are more than just what you do. We
also have habits for how we think, and these mental habits play a huge role in determining our
actions. For example, it’s natural to think of failure as bad, but when something doesn’t work
out, stop and check how you think about it. Embrace any setback as an experience to learn and
grow from, rather than a failure that defines you. Another way to look at this is to focus on your
near wins. Maybe some action you took didn’t quite have the outcome you were hoping for, but
it just may be what leads to your next success.

Creating good mental and daily habits is the best way to pick yourself up and keep moving forward. The reality is that dreaming big and setting goals isn’t enough. You have to hit the ground running with a solid strategy to really see your dreams become reality.

-Julie Morris
p.o.m.e. guest blogger

juliemorris.org

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