Why do we fear those largely ambitious goals when we've graduated past our 30s or 40s? Getting an education in a new field or starting a business seems too lofty of a goal to tackle, and completely unreasonable to many.
That's what I thought too!
Now in my 50s I've decided to end this ridiculousness of being too old, or that four years of an academic commitment is half of my life I have left! As I look back, those four years have repeated itself several times. And guess what? I'm still here.
Much of what derailed this ambitious goal was me focusing on the end result. There were so many stories I told myself of how this would consume my life, and four years is a long time! What more can I do with that time?
This kept me from taking the first step. I had the end goal in mind but no idea if I could handle the hard work and effort required in between to make it happen. Committing to a dream this big seemed out of my reach.
This fear I created kept it a dream. And I became my greatest obstacle.
What I chose to commit to had to change in order for me to move forward in my goals. I was focusing on the end result and what sacrifice I had to make to get there. I was so worried about not being able to stick to it. What if I dropped out? What would people think? What if I couldn't complete the program because I couldn't afford it?
Those thoughts continued to possess my mind and drove me back to the safety zone.
I needed to scale this way back and commit to the first step. That made it easy.
Since, I've lessened the dominance that fear had on me, and I was able to enrol in university to earn my BA in Sociology.
That first step was riveting! It was like the hottest guy in high school asking me out. After receiving the acceptance email, I was dancing in the kitchen with the energy of a teenager.
I've had several people ask me what I'm going to do with the degree or what I'll minor in. To that I replied, I'm just going to focus on the first class and then as I get deeper into it, I'll decide.
When tackling any goals, committing just to the first step makes it much easier to achieve it. This narrowed point to focus on gives us courage to take the next step, and then the next.
If you want to strengthen your commitment to achieving your goals, I'm sharing 8 ways to do this! And you can download it here.
I can't help but to equate this to our dating experience. If we focus on our goal's end result of being in a committed relationship—before our first date—then we miss all the nuances in between. Those little moments of learning about each other gives us confidence and the courage to progress.
If we simply commit to the first step of meeting and allowing it all to naturally unfold after hello, then we can enjoy the journey as we take each step after that. And as you get deeper in... then, start filling in the blanks of where this can go.
When we pay attention to our progress, we witness the experience evolve and how we change and adapt as we grow. Our anxiety lessens and our courage deepens.
Many people don't take that first step to achieving their goals because they see the first step as the end result. Instead of building up the courage needed to achieve our goals, they drown it with anxiety and doubt.
Ambitious goals can easily be achieved when we focus on the right step. Soon enough, everything else falls into place.
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Christine Hourd, Associate Certified Coach and owner of The Success Model, works with clients to help them reach their goals more rapidly. By improving how they communicate with themselves and others they more easily remove the roadblocks that impede success in their personal and professional life. Book an appointment to discuss how success coaching can benefit you.
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