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Four Ways to STRETCH YOURSELF to Achieve Your Goal

How to maximize your effectiveness to achieve your goals by learning your difficulties.

The greatest challenge, I feel for everyone is to effectively manage themselves to achieve what they want to accomplish in life. For myself, I know my greatest challenge is to effectively lead myself to stay the course and I have to be honest with you it’s a struggle.

Acknowledging that you do struggle with the goals and standards you set for yourself is perfectly fine, as long as you don’t inundate yourself in the mistakes you make or the slip ups. Everyone has those lapse in judgement, the key to accept, let go, and be consistent in moving forward. This alone allows you to be honest with yourself and allows you to gain strength in knowing who you are. Remember, it’s not about the accomplishment of a goal but the process in what we become as we strive towards achieving a goal, so here are four ways to STRETCHYOURSELF through effective management of you.

In my many years of coaching and consulting others, I’ve learned something very important and that is people seldom see themselves realistically. As humans we size everyone up in the world except ourselves and when we do attempt to be honest with ourselves we are actually harder on others than we are ourselves. Even when we do something wrong, we believe and try to justify that our motives were good in order to let ourselves off the hook, and will use this same justification process over and over before allowing the change that is needed in our life.

So to be successful in any endeavor we need to learn how to get out of our own way, and by practicing these four ways, you will become more effective in managing yourself to achieve your goals.

Learn followership

Success leaves clues. Everyone that has been successful in life has first learned from someone, understanding that they didn’t know everything, but surround themselves around people with the same ambitions and goals and learned from them. Connecting with like-minded people makes everything possible because they have walked where you are going, allows you to learn from their failures and gives you a better sense of your direction. Growing up with four sisters, it was easy for me to learn how to ask for help and more importantly, to learn humility and to understand that I need help to steer me in the right direction. Remember success cannot be achieve unless you take someone or something with you.

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Develop self-discipline

Each one of us is the captain of our ship as it sails through the waves of destiny in our lives, so we are responsible for our own actions and decisions. To consistently make good decisions and the right actions, and to refrain from the wrong actions requires self-discipline. To do or say things we regret, or to miss opportunities that have presented themselves to us without taking action requires massive self-discipline to keep moving forward despite the fear we perceive. One thing I always say to myself when I feel fear creeping into my mind space when there is something that I have to do is, “If it has to be, it’s up to me”. Meaning no one is going to help me move forward but me, and I have to do this, it’s up to me. From there I take one massive step and move forward, and what I’ve learned is once you take that step, everything from that step is easy, and with time everything you create builds your self-discipline to push forward despite of fear. Now I say this to tell you that fear never leaves you, however, the fear you feel will prepare instead of paralyzing you to move forward. The key here is develop that self-discipline to do what you should to no matter how you feel about it.

Practice patience 

For myself I know I tend to be impatient. When I get started I am always looking ahead and wanting to move further ahead, and that can be good. Being one step ahead keep you anticipating allows you to effective manage yourself by preparing for the next step. However, that can also be bad. Being too far ahead of yourself allows you to make mistakes and not be as efficient and effective and sometimes leads to failure. Practicing patience allows you to fully engage in the moment, and what I love to tell my clients to approach every project with “no perceptions, no expectations” Ensure that you do everything in focus and in the moment and don’t worry about the next step until it is time to take the next step.

Very few worthwhile things in life come quickly. There is no such thing as instant greatness or instant maturity. Society has programmed us that we should be getting things done in an instant, and it’s expressed in commercials claiming you can cook an entire meal in five minutes, instant oatmeal, and microwave popcorn. In today’s society no one wants to wait for anything, everything has to be faster, but becoming successful doesn’t happen overnight. Achieving your goals and dreams doesn’t happen like popping something into the microwave. Success is more of a crock pot proposition. It takes time, but when it comes it is definitely worth the wait. So what am I saying here? I’m saying that in order to be successful you must first learn to be patient with the process, and it’s not about the fastest, quickest, way to do it. It’s about being honest with yourself, being deliberate in gaining the knowledge and applying what you know, and enlisting others to keep you on course to fulfill your intentions. You can’t do that by reading an article like this, you have to apply it, make it a habit, and be consistent. It’s kind of like working out. Once you’ve achieve the weight loss or the muscle you want, it’s about maintenance in order to keep the weight off or keeping your muscle tone. And what you’ll find is that practicing patience will allow everything to happen on time.

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Be accountable

When you effective manage yourself, not only are you honest with yourself, you know your ups and downs and whether or not you can trust yourself to take the next step or process to achieve your goals. Over the years I’ve read about many people that failed because they thought something would never happen to them and it did, based on their false sense of security they built thinking that they were incapable of making a mistake or losing something. There are two things that you will need to decide right now in order for you to effectively manage yourself and that is

I will not trust myself

I will find an accountability partner to allow me to be accountable to someone other than myself

Lack of accountability in your life will lead to problems that will not only manifest themselves in your personal life, but will filter into every aspect of your life as well. There is an old Chinese proverb saying that states, “When you see a good man, think of emulating him, when you see a bad man, examine your heart”

Being accountable is a willingness to explain your actions and starts way before taking action. Not being accountable says

We don’t want advice

Where being accountable says

We don’t object to advice

We welcome advice

We actively seek advice

Advice allow us to make the best decision and we often follow the advice given.

So here are some questions to help you become more effective at managing yourself. Remember you cannot manage time, you can only manage yourself.

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How clearly to you see yourself? List your major goals and objectives and mark them achieved or not achieved. Now talk to someone you know and respect, a coach or a mentor and tell them that you are evaluating yourself and show them the list and ask them what do they think based on your achievements and failures.

Where do you need to grow? In which of the above areas we discuss do you need to grow? Self-discipline, followership, or patience. What new book or practice can you take on to develop it? Set up a goal that will require you to use one of the traits or all three.

Lastly, how well do you follow advice? Do you ask for advice and then defend your opinion in order to justify why you decided to do something? Ask a combination of 5 – 10 friends, colleagues or family members to evaluate you using the levels we mentioned in this article with each of the following worth the number beside it.

  1. You don’t want advice
  2. You don’t object advice, you listen but don’t apply
  3. You welcome advice
  4. You often follow the advice given.

Average your score and if your average is below 4 you need to improve in this area. Begin enlisting others in your information gathering process before you make decisions and take action. Remember the willingness to seek and accept advice is a great indicator or accountability. IF you see it early – before you take action – you are less likely to lose focus, get off track, and get discouraged. Most wrong actions come about because people are not being held accountable early enough.

Thanks for reading and I hope this helps you STRETCHYOURSELF to achieve your goals by managing yourself with these effective tips. Now it’s your turn…What helps you persevere and bounce back from setbacks? How do you motivate yourself and maintain your focus through difficult situations on a daily basis? Leave a comment below and share your thoughts and insights. I look forward to connecting with you soon.

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  1. Olanrewaju Olawale

    October 14, 2018 at 10:27 AM

    Thanks for sharing this insight, i have my dream board and my goals are always with me. Keeping track is always a good way of going forward. CHeck and Adjust. Like now. I use to use Calendar to keep my appointments but for the past 3 days, I did not update my calendar. Something is wrong, I am trusting my brain and that’s killing. I have to do my schedules again. Motivating myself start from imaginary. I love to buy stuff but if i don’t have money to buy them, I will say. ‘Hold on, I will buy you soon’ I believe motivation comes from within. I laugh at my sorrows because i know its temporary. Thanks for sharing this piece. I will share it.

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