There are three emotional levels most everyone experiences during their journey through setting and achieving their important life goals:
1. THE HIGH
2. THE LOW
3. THE PLATEAU
When a positive experience (the high) impacts one of our goals, we become very excited and say, “This goal is going really great!” When it happens to me, I usually say to my wife, Karin, “This is going to be easier than I imagined.”
I take that positive experience that moves my goal forward and extrapolate it out to a larger universe. The goal becomes a conceptual video in my mind that is now nearly achieved. However, though this high point in reference to my goal is good news… it’s not an indication that I’m going to achieve the goal without continued hard work and persistence.
When a negative experience (the low) impacts one of our goals, we become sad and a little discouraged and say, “This goal is not going well.” When it happens to me, I usually say to Karin, “This is going to be more difficult than I imagined.”
I take that negative experience that slows down my goal and extrapolate it out to a larger universe. The goal becomes a snapshot in my mind… frozen in time… and it seems as though I will never achieve it. However, though this low point in reference to my goal is disappointing… it’s not an indication that I can’t or won’t accomplish the goal.
The highs and lows are both great deceivers!
They are false indicators of success and failure, as they are simply moments in time.
Let me share part of a recent posting on the Total Success Achievement – Epiphany Alliance forum that was made by one of our members, Pete:
“Since my last update, I have been continuing to follow the Goals Program and use the ETR Daily Planner. Unfortunately, I have not been able to spend as much time on my LIFE goals and online side business as I want. My full-time business has been extremely busy the past few months, and we are just now entering our seasonal busy period… yes, even manufacturing has a busy season when next year’s models are being launched. I have had to focus most of my time and energy on this business since it does pay the bills.
“I do work on my online business a couple of days/nights per week and on weekends… and I am still progressing toward my goals. Slow… but steady! Sometimes that wins the race, right?”
Pete’s done himself a huge favor by recognizing that he IS progressing on his goals (including honoring his work commitments). His positive attitude is the way to get past the most common obstacle to achieving our goals — the plateau.
The plateau is when you reach a point that makes you feel like you’re stuck in neutral.
Your goal is to lose 15 pounds this year. So far, you’ve lost 5 pounds, but haven’t lost any more weight in several weeks or months.
Your goal is to increase your income by $30,000. So far, you’ve bumped your income up by $10,000, but it no longer seems to be increasing.
The reality is that these flat spots are normal — and part of the goal achieving process!
What can you do to push past these plateaus? The best way is to think like Pete and take continued positive actions toward your goals.
If you feel like you’re stuck in neutral, here’s what I want you to do. Schedule 10 minutes with yourself (10 minutes of quiet time) each morning for the next week. During that time, remember WHY you set that goal. Visualize the benefits of achieving the goal. In addition, ask yourself these questions:
- Have I allocated enough time to accomplish this goal?
This is the most common problem that I have discovered during the one-on-one coaching calls I make to members of the Epiphany Alliance program. Make sure you’re not overreaching by trying to accomplish a goal in an unrealistic amount of time.
- Have I asked other people for their help?
There is no one right way or set formula for every person and goal. You need to be creative and open to suggestions and ideas.
- Do I have too many goals?
In speaking with members of the Epiphany Alliance program, I find that they often make three financial goals for the year in addition to their health, personal, and social goals. My recommendation is to make only one goal in each category.
My goal experiences have taught me to… make my promises to myself sparingly and keep them faithfully. This (which has become my simplified personal mission statement) keeps me from overextending myself — and, thus, underperforming.
A lifetime of success is at your fingertips. You merely need to reach for it. Turn your goals into promises… take continued, positive actions… and you will achieve success — and recreate success — in whatever you pursue, for the rest of your life.[Ed. Note: You can change your life and accomplish all your goals with simple strategies like the ones Bob Cox just shared. For dozens more ways to turn your dreams into reality — plus tons of goal-setting tools and motivation to get going — sign up for ETR’s Epiphany Alliance program. Learn more here.]