How to achieve your goals? (and set some good ones!)

For most of us, the danger is not to aim too high and miss the target, but to aim too low and reach it. (Michelangelo)

I love this quote from Michelangelo.

She inspires me a lot and I even put it in my professional email signature.

All of us, whatever our situation, our means, our ambitions, we ask ourselves the question: "How can I achieve my goals? "

Unfortunately, it is (very) often difficult to go through.

In this article, I will provide you with some secrets and strategies that have proven successful if you want to better learn to set motivating goals and, above all, to achieve them!

How to achieve your goals? (and fix it well)

Each year, a tradition resumes.

After December 31, we make resolutions and we hope that the new year will allow us to get a facelift, to improve what we do not enjoy in our lives.

You want a depressing example?

Here it is still 😉.

But did you know that over 95% of people do not follow their resolutions?

Why that ?

If you are among those who abandon their resolutions and goals, read on so that you do not have to repeat the same good intentions over and over again … without ever succeeding.

But before, if you want to laugh a little bit about me, here is an interview that I made on the subject a few years ago:

Do you have (really) a plan?

When traveling, did you ever go through the spirit of not deciding where you were going, or which path would you take?

No, of course.

Yet this is what you do each time you set a goal to achieve but you do not clearly determine the means you will take to succeed.

The difference between a plan and a plan …

Are all plans to achieve your goals equal before the starry sky?

Not at all. There are good and bad ones.

Here are the 7 features of a plan worthy of the name that will help you achieve your goals:

  1. It only containsonly one objective (at a time).
  2. The goal he aims to achieve is yours. I mean it belongs to you, that you really want to realize it. It mobilizes you, emanates from your intentions and your values. This kind of goal will be rewarding, motivating, and it will be much easier (and possible) to achieve it.
  3. Your plan must be clear and exhaustive: do not settle for thenearly… but it does not contain information that is not necessary and that makes it more difficult to use.
  4. It is progressive in his actions to pose and contains a realistic schedule.
  5. Your plan must be logic: he must tell you whether you advance or not and help you correct the shot if you do not move in the right direction. You must not only consult it often but even use it as a basis for work. So you revise your plan and adapt it to reality as you go. Personally, I have an open plan of action for every important goal I'm working on, including hobbies like this blog.
  6. It must contain concrete actions all of which contribute to achieving your one goal (and not other vaguely formulated goals).
  7. Actions should be as short and accurate as possibleThey should be easy to put on and should not discourage you. Do not confuse an action with a project. Calling a person is an action. Shopping a good or service to get the best possible price is a project (it involves several actions).

How to measure your results?

Oscar Wilde said good intentions are like bad checks.

He was right!

The fact is that we often give ourselves goals without really knowing how we intend to achieve them.

It's not long before we forget about them and get on with our daily routine …

How do we usually do to know if we got a result?

We compare the previous situation with the current situation and we measure the difference.

When do you usually check to see if you are meeting your goals during the process? Never ?

If we do not follow a plan and we only give ourselves good intentions, it is absolutely certain that we will forget and that nothing will happen.


When we remember, often months later, that we are pursuing a goal, we are dismayed that we have failed.

It is then that the process of autodénigrement is set in motion and nourishes the cognitive distortions: "I am good for nothing! "I'm not even able to follow the goals I'm giving myself! », Etc.

We then doubt ourselves, we no longer trust ourselves, we no longer believe in our ability to succeed.

Repeat this process a number of times, and exit Self-confidence !

Then we reduce (or simply eradicate) our objectives, we abdicate, we stop dreaming and we depress …

IT IS SO PRIMORDIAL give yourself an action plan and do not forget your goal by checking as often as possible if you are moving in the right direction.

The B.A. BA goals you will have desire to achieve because you will make them motivating

Perfect, you know how to set goals and have a plan.

You even know the characteristics of the actions that will help you apply it.

Now comes the time to take action. Unfortunately, there is often a breakdown.

We have other things to do, we do not want, no time, in short, we taste the pleasure of procrastination …

Whether your goals are super exciting or, on the contrary, demanding and uninviting, the way you formulate them will greatly influence your level of motivation.

A useful but tasteless goal may become more motivating to achieve than a more exciting goal if you see it in a way that will spark your motivation.

I do not count the useful platitudes I have accomplished successfully because I believed in their usefulness, in that they were going to bring me. It consists more or less in associating a vision with its goals.

Imagine that the only goal you give yourself in life is to pay your bills each month.

You may not want to get up in the morning …

Is not an objective a dream to which we add a plan and a timetable?

To motivate yourself, try the following strategy.

Take a goal that is important to you but that you have difficulty achieving, such as getting in shape.

To avoid interrupting after two months the excellent habit that you have taken by registering at a sports center, think first of all the benefits you will get to exercise regularly.

You will lose weight, you will feel better in your body, you will prevent cardiovascular diseases, etc.

Then think of all you will lose if you do not achieve your goal.

You will keep your excess pounds and you will risk taking others, you will feel guilty of having stopped an exercise that you knew beneficial, you will increase the risks of suffering from serious diseases as you get older, you will be less well in your body …

Imagine the arguments for and the arguments against are on the scale of a scale.

The purpose of this exercise is to help you make good sense of the beliefs you associate with achieving your goal.

It is inspired by the decisional balance, one of the resources proposed by themotivational interview, a rich therapeutic strategy that I will discuss in other posts.

This is to help us always keep in mind the reasons why we achieve a goal.

The fact of constantly focus on all the short-, medium- and long-term benefits of achieving your goal gives you reasons to keep going, feeds the fire and makes you want to succeed!

7 strategies to help you reach your goals

1. Get to know you

If you do not know who you are, what are your interests or your values, you can hardly act in accordance with yourselves. Getting to know yourself is about authenticity, which in turn is a source of motivation.

You know for whom and for what you do what you do.

If you are authentic, you realize your goals for yourself (your values, your vision, etc.), not to please others.

This is called the intrinsic motivationThe reasons you take action are within yourself and do not depend on others.

To act for others is a fragile, variable and contingent reason over which we have no hold and which can even turn against us (if those for whom we achieve the goal change their minds, lose interest, etc.)

2. To achieve many and realistic goals

If you fail one of your goals and you decide to stop pursuing it (it happens …), it's important that you have others that take over.

So, instead of sinking into depression, your initiatives gain a new meaning.

When I curled up the burnout in 2009 and decided to stop giving lectures and training, the goal of developing my speaker agency took over.

So I tasted only a small depression that did not last long and I could continue to build something that made me happier.

I have never regretted it!

But if I had nothing else to put in my mouth, it would have been depression assured.

The ability to dream is also one of the greatest strengths of the human being.

But still, your goals must remain realistic. If your goals are impossible to accomplish, it will be difficult to achieve them …

3. Take action, in a massive and consistent way

I like this formula: without action, something terrible happens: nothing!

Action is the difference between good intention and result, between wishful thinking and success.

But you still have to know what to do!

You have developed a beautiful plan to know how you will achieve your goals, it's perfect.

It is then time to take action.

To succeed, your actions must be continuous, constant, organized.

If you forget, if you stop, there is a good chance you will stop for good.

It is as if you stop smoking: one puff and you are likely to start smoking again.

If you achieve a goal, stopping your actions is like taking a puff of cigarette: it's the tiny initiative that will lead you to a big bad result: failure (temporary), until you start again having learned from your mistake …

4. Develop your curiosity and your creativity

The most successful people are usually those who continue to learn their whole lives.

In the technological world in which we live, where value and wealth go to those who possess knowledge, it is no longer permissible to stop learning.

But the good news is that today the sources of knowledge are multiple, easily accessible and found everywhere. Learning, in addition to amaze you, will increase your skills, your confidence and expand the range of actions you can take.

Creativity goes hand in hand with learning. It is she who helps to generate new knowledge.

It also helps you to correct your mistakes and find more effective ways to achieve your goals.

Each of us can be curious and creative.

These are two excellent habits to develop for anyone who wants to achieve their goals and, by the way, come true!

5. Learn from your mistakes and persevere

When a child learns to walk, he falls very often.

Imagine what would happen if the children, because they stumble, decided that, finally, the march was not made for them:

"Well, walking is enough. I have tried enough and I am tired of falling on the buttocks. I will rather spend my life in a wheelchair … "

This example seems absurd to you?

It is, however, the same attitude that we adopt each time we stop pursuing an important goal because it is difficult and the difficulties are unpleasant to tolerate.

In other words, most of the time, the only enemy that prevents us from getting what we want is ourselves!

Learning from our mistakes and persevering makes all the difference.

If you are serious about your goal, humble enough to deceive yourself and brave enough to persevere, success will be assured after a while it is unfortunately impossible to know.

We are sometimes very close to the goal without even knowing it, and that's where we stop.

It is therefore worthwhile to continue … until the end.


6. Learn from others

A Japanese proverb says that asking only costs a moment of embarrassment, but not asking for embarrassment all our lives …

The people we meet can teach us a lot about many things.

They can help us avoid making mistakes and help us achieve our goals faster and more effectively.

They may have been there …

Those who shyly or proudly refuse to learn from others condemn themselves to being alone and cutting themselves off from great resources.

I imagine that if you are reading these lines, this is not your case since you are able to search the Internet, read, learn and I hope not to disappoint you by sharing my own mistakes to help you move faster.

Thank you for your trust, thank you for being here!

7. Be grateful to life for what it gratifies us

It's cliché time, but true cliché.

It is hackneyed to repeat "Try to be aware every day of the luck you have. "

But it's true, it's still true, it's still true!

Even scientific research in positive psychology demonstrates this.

Recognition will keep you open to others and to life.

It will remove your resentment at the difficulties and help you stay humble even if you get great success.

Recognition will help you feel good, strengthen your relationships with others, and increase cooperation.

Are these not personal dispositions and a social context that will promote your success?

How will achieving your goals allow you to live an extraordinary life?

We all have the right to live an extraordinary life.

But this right, we must give it to ourselves.

More than 2,000 years ago, Socrates said "Become the master of yourself and you will be the master of your destiny. "

He is always right today.

If you allow yourself to dream, you give yourself the right to succeed.

If you then take action, you create the context that will materialize your success, whatever your definition of the word success.

If your current life depends on the decisions you have made in the past, the life you live depends on the choices you make today.

Does not a Chinese proverb claim that all the flowers of the future are in today's seeds?

You will live an extraordinary life if you choose to act and go beyond, if you give yourself constructive goals and persevere in realizing them.

We can all live two births.

The first is where we come into the world.

But we will not all be happy to live a second birth.

This new birth is to know ourselves, to dream and to surpass ourselves.

With the special attention you can bring to the realization of yourself, you will come to conquer what you are and to get the best out of it.

At that moment, you will live with the certainty that your life is truly extraordinary!

Before finishing this article, here are some more tips to motivate you:

  • Make sense exciting to actions important that you wish to undertake.
  • Concentrate on the positive dimensions of your goals.
  • Delete the word "Failure" of your vocabulary and replace it with "Apprenticeship"
  • Check frequently if you go ahead in achieving your goals. Nothing is more motivating than knowing that you are moving forward.
  • Remember your past successes remember and remember your failures only through what they have allowed you to learn.
  • Believe in yourself and your abilities and work to increase your trust.
  • Avoid the procrastination: do today what you can do tomorrow.
  • Did you know that only inaction you really tired? It undermines your motivation and desire to achieve you.

But if there was only one small thing to remember from this article (apart from Michelangelo's quotation from the beginning which is very well in the conversations), it is that the greatest happiness of self-realization comes from the process through which we accomplish our goals, much more than the results we obtain.

Achieving a goal can take time, sometimes years, and if you believe it enough, every time you work on it, your goal will feed you with enthusiasm and happiness.

This process will bring you even more than the results of your goal when it is accomplished!

Achieve its goals !

Exercise. Improve what dissatisfied you in your life

1. Write honestly what is most dissatisfied with your personal life (family and interpersonal relationships, health and physical appearance, finances, etc.):

2. Write honestly what dissatisfied you in your professional life:

3. What could you do concretely and practically to reduce the gap between unsatisfactory and acceptable situations? For example, if your level of debt is causing you stomach ulcers, you can budget, see how to reduce your expenses and start saving for everything.

This exercise involves being very honest with yourself and it can be unhealthy to list the things you do not like.

Indeed, our deepest dissatisfactions are often those we hide, that we do not confess to ourselves. Identifying your dissatisfaction is therefore a painful but life-saving step.

Here is an example.

Bernard bought some training equipment some time ago but he does not use it.

One of the reasons for this inaction is that Bernard, in buying this material, intended to make a lot exercise, but he never gave concrete goals and did not change his schedule or his habits to succeed.

This example illustrates how important it is to accompany our intentions and desires toaccurate and realistic actions to do every day or every week (in Bernard's example, practice once or twice a week).

It is better to start with a modest goal, but one that allows us to take action rather than choosing an overly ambitious goal that is constantly being delayed.

Without this strategy, you will find it much more difficult to enjoy the benefits of your results.

Each of your objectives must be measurable: your results will be able to motivate you and persevere. You must be able to easily see your progress.

The more active you are in what you do, the more passionate you will be, the better you will know yourself and the more others will react to you positively and offer you interesting initiatives.

If you liked this article, know that it is from my book Ask yourself the right questions. You can get it in ebook version to read it in full.

Suggestions to go further!

I'm proud to say that this post is one of the longest on my blog! I hope with all my heart that he has brought you something. Do you have questions, would you like to share your own experiences? Comments are there for that!

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