As business owners, we set goals with the intention of accomplishing them. However, obstacles have a sneaky way of popping up and stalling our momentum. Thus, we are left discouraged, full of excuses, and will often allow ourselves to take our foot off the gas pedal while en route to our end destination (ie. goal). While this is a human and natural tendency, it’s not conducive to success! So below, we are sharing one of our favorite techniques to push through barriers that stand between you and your dreams!
How to Set Goals
One of the most important strategies to implement when setting a goal is to include backup plans that will combat the inevitable “what ifs” such as those listed below:
- “What if I don’t pass the prerequisite course?”
- “What if I don’t get the loan?”
- “What if I run out of time?”
- “What if the marketing doesn’t work?”
- “What if I just don’t feel like it?”
By planning for the inevitable “what ifs”, we greatly improve our chances of accomplishing our goals!
Preplanning for the “What Ifs”
First and foremost, it is important to understand the difference between the two different types of “what ifs”.
Internal barriers are the pesky “what ifs” about ourselves that we tend to agonize about!
These include our personal fears, self-esteem, paradigms, and motivation (or lack thereof).
“What if I just don’t feel like doing my assignment?”
The Solution – commit to working on your assignment in 15-minute chunks at a time. Then, take planned breaks in between the 15-minute time blocks!
“What if my fear of cold-calling prevents me from following through on my marketing campaign?”
Solution – Sign up for an improv class! This will help you break out of your shell and gain confidence.
“What if I find myself procrastinating?”
Solution – ask a friend or family member to call (or text) every day reminding you to dedicate some time to your goal!
External barriers include roadblocks that are often outside of your immediate control such as money, time, resources, other people’s reactions, and results. Now, since we cannot control these barriers, we have some control over the way we react to them.
“What if the client turns down my proposal?”
Solution – prepare questions that will help determine why they decided to turn down your proposal. Perhaps there is an opportunity to resubmit it.
“What if I forget the documents?”
Solution – upload the documents to dropbox (or something similar) that is easily accessible from any computer. Or, perhaps, download the documents to your laptop computer, or tablet. That way, you are not beholden to internet access.
“What if the landscaping blocks don’t come in on time?”
Solution – pad the timeline and notify the client of this possibility in advance. Realign timeline to work on other projects until the blocks come in.
When you set goals, take some time to practice this technique. It is very encouraging to know that you have plans in place to overcome obstacles that pop up! Be sure to create backup plans for both the small and large goals! That way, you will have the opportunity to practice!
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