By now you’ve already invested quite a bit of time and energy into achieving your goal. You’ve begun taking the class to improve your professional skill set or thoughtfully revising the manuscript for submission or diligently networking with other business professionals to make much-needed new contacts. Not only that, you’ve even seen first signs of success. Congratulations! But as the days and weeks wear on, one question pops into your mind with ever-increasing frequency:
Am I there yet?
Somewhere in the last quarter of the race we just want things to be over! We’re tired of being focused and disciplined. We’re no longer so eager to put in the extra time or regularly add two or three more tasks to an already full to-do list. As illogical as it may seem, many people give up on a project or goal somewhere in the fourth quarter. They’ve already proven to themselves that they can make (some) changes and they’ve already seen (initial) success. But now – quite frankly – they’re getting bored with the process.
Sure, they still want to achieve that goal, but they’re tired of regularly doing what it takes to actually make it happen.
What can you do to avoid falling into this enticing “partial achievement” trap?
- First of all, simply admit to yourself exactly how you feel! It’s not illegal to be frustrated and tired and impatient. By facing up to your feelings, you’re taking the first step towards successfully dealing with them.
- Secondly, give yourself permission to take a time-out. Unless your goal is extremely time sensitive, there will be a window of time for your to take a break. Even if it’s only an afternoon dedicated to self-care (if your goal is really that time-sensitive), allowing yourself time to rejuvenate and recharge your batteries will make it easier to take that final lap.
- Lastly, get back on track! Don’t misuse your time-out as an excuse to segue into giving up completely. Even if the break you take turns out to be longer than you originally planned, that’s no excuse to avoid getting back in step with your action plan.
Finishing late is better than never finishing at all.
Even though I originally planned to whip off these eleven posts in just eleven days, realizing just how unrealistic that plan was in the context of everything else I need to do doesn’t mean that – in the end – this list of eleven questions and tips can’t be completed, does it?