I should preface this conversation with a disclaimer that I am by no means an expert on this topic. However, I really enjoy this topic and have done quite a bit of research as such. These are tips & tricks that worked for me and I hope you find success with them too!
Achieving a goal has to be more than just writing it down, or saying it out loud to a couple friends and hoping it manifests. An achievable goal involves several steps & components: a goal, a visual, an action plan, a tracker, and perhaps most importantly, implementation of the action plan.
Step 1: Create the goal, and change your mindset. Your goal is going to take work, maybe a little sacrifice, and it's going to be uncomfortable. Growth doesn’t happen when you're comfortable! In fact, it's exclusive to being uncomfortable. Envision your life after you've achieved the goal- what new doors does this unlock for you? Settle into the knowledge that this is going to change you for the better, but it's not going to happen without a little fight. Harness your grit, get comfortable with the discomfort, and focus your energy on winning.
Step 2: Create a vision board of your goals. This is one of those things I always thought was a little outlandish. However, I'm here to personally vouch for the fact that it works! At the beginning of 2022, I created a vision board of the things I wanted most out of the year. I printed it out, and stuck it to my desk where I would look at it every single day. I was *amazed* at the results from simply implementing a visual reminder of my goals. The constant visual reminder of the things I wanted most ingrained itself into my subconscious, and helped me make better decisions without any conscious thought.
Step 3: Create the action plan. This is the second hardest part of achieving your goals. You've got to create a realistic plan for how you're going to get there. These steps are actions, and they are meant to propel you forward. I'm going to give you an example of how this works:
Example Goal 1: Save up enough money to buy a house
Action 1: Walk into a bank you don't currently use, and setup a separate bank account (so the funds aren't co-mingling with the rest of your money) and create a weekly direct deposit of $XXX into this account. Be sure there are no debit cards attached to the account- make it hard to access this money so you aren't tempted to do so!
Action 2: Make a budget and a plan of how you'll learn to live without those extra funds. For example: you always go out for pizza on Friday nights. Add BOGO pizzas to your grocery list, and keep them in the freezer for Friday night fun. Instead of spending $50 weekly on pizza for the family, you're spending $20 a month on pizza. That simple switch took your spending from ~$200 a month to ~$20 a month, or an extra $180 a month toward your goal!
Action 3: Time block 30 minutes in your calendar once a week to review your spending for the week. Do not let other appointments take this time slot. Get into the habit of showing up for this appointment every single week.
Action 4: Set an appointment with a Realtor (moi!) and let me hold you accountable! We're a FREE resource for you! Is this a shameless plug? Absolutely! But also it's a friendly reminder that you are never alone, and there are people everywhere willing and wanting to help you achieve your goals.
Step 4: Track your Progress. I'm a visual girl, and I like the satisfaction of crossing things off a list. It's a serotonin boost to see a physical reminder of your progress and it's incredible motivation to keep the needle moving forward. My goal tracker includes bubbles I fill in for every book I read, every pound I lose, and every house I sell. I update my tracker once a month, on the last day of the month. I then spend a few minutes reflecting on my goals, and adjusting my action plan to refocus my efforts and energy on reaching those goals.
Step 5: Implementation of the plan. Hands down, this is the hardest part of achieving your goals. This is where hard work and grit come out to play. This is the part where you actually have to make sacrifices and change your behavior. When you don't feel motivated, you have to rely on discipline to propel you forward. Motivation is a feeling just like happiness or sadness. Sometimes you're motivated, sometimes you're not. Sometimes you're happy, sometimes you're not. Regardless of your motivation level, you've still got to put the work in if you want to achieve your goal.
So what does this look like? If we use the example from above, it could look like saying no to brunch, and making pancakes at home instead. It could be opting for Seaworld passes over Disney passes because the cost savings is astronomical. It could mean deleting all the shopping apps on your phone, and binging Netflix instead. It probably includes blocking time on your calendar to review your budget and assess your spending to see where else you can cut costs.
Like I said, this part is zero fun. This part is going to give you FOMO for missing brunch, and you might die a little inside when all you want is pizza and beer from your favorite local spot, and you're stuck pulling a frozen pie out of the oven. This is the part where we lean into discipline, and pray our motivation heads back into town soon.
This is also the part where you reward yourself for a job well done. Seeing that extra $50 hit your New House Fund has to feel good! Treating yourself to an extra glass of wine as a reward for eating the stupid frozen pizza absolutely feels good! And think of how much you'll see the needle move on your goal tracker at the end of each month if you keep making consistent- but not impossible changes- to your daily routine.
One final comment on goal setting for all you perfectionists out there: I used to have the mindset that if I didn't go the gym on Monday, the whole week was shot and there was no point picking up halfway through the week. I used to think that if I ate a crappy breakfast, I've already ruined my chances of a caloric deficit for the day, so what's the point in even trying to eat healthy. I'm here to tell you, this is a nonsensical approach to achieving your goals. Every single day is a fresh start. Every meal is a fresh start. Every new decision you make when it comes to reaching your goals, is an opportunity for you to move the needle forward. Achieving your goals does NOT require perfect attendance. It requires you to keep showing up, to keep going- to put it simple: to not give up.
I hope this inspires you to achieve all your hearts desire in 2023! If your goals are real estate related, I urge you to give me a call so I can be your personal accountability partner in achieving real estate success!