How to Ensure You Achieve Your Goals this Year

goal-achievement-secretGoals. Lot’s of people set them at this time of year—right before or after the New Year. But few people—only eight percent—achieve the goals they set.

Call them resolutions, intentions, or commitments—it doesn’t matter, writing them down and aspiring to these new behaviors, mindsets, or habits represents a significant and positive practice. But wanting to accomplish something doesn’t make it happen.

You know that.

So what’s going to make this year different?

Learn to Achieve Goals

You can find tons of information online about how to set and achieve goal including in my free ebook. Much of it is the same. Some of it takes a different slant. It’s all helpful…

Make your goals SMART. Make your goals DUMB. Make them SMARTER.

Be emotionally connected to your goals. Create goals that allow you to stretch…but not too much. Have a Big Why for each goal.

An abundance of achievement advice lies at your fingertips. Just go to Google, and you’ll find yourself educated and overwhelmed with information.

I admit I’ve also written extensively about goal achievement. You can read a few of these posts here, here and here. (You can find even more posts on the topic here.)

But there’s more to achieving goals… In fact, there’s one missing step—one even I haven’t written much about.

Overcome Your Challenges to Goal Achievement

What’s the missing step? Plan for the challenges to goal achievement.

That’s right…create a plan to overcome the obstacles that stop or slow down your progress toward achieving your goals or keeping your resolutions.

We all end up experiencing impediments to our best-laid plans and intentions. It’s those who know how to climb over or go around—or eliminate—the obstacles and keep moving forward that succeed. These are the eight percent who achieve their goals.

Don’t Ignore the Inevitable

You know it’s going to happen…life will get in the way. Or you’ll get distracted. You’ll lose motivation. Or something else will seemingly stop you from taking action. You’ll find a reason (an excuse) to quit.

Admit it. It’s happened before…maybe every year.

I get it. It’s happened to me, too…more times than I care to say.

So how do you do it differently this year?

You stop ignoring the inevitable and, instead, face it head on. You plan for and develop strategies to help you successfully move past the challenges.

Let’s say you want to get in better shape this year and eat a healthier diet. Great! But you know you will have periods of time during the year when it becomes difficult to keep moving toward this goal. You might go on vacation, have other commitments, travel for business, or not feel 100 percent. At these times, you might choose not or be unable to exercise or eat your regular diet.

What will you do to make sure you stay or get back on track? What plan can you implement?

  • When life gets hectic, will you work out early in the morning or late at night—rather than missing those daily exercise routines?
  • When you travel, will you bring the makings for your morning protein drinks, so you continue to start the day with great nutrition?
  • To avoid extended periods of inactivity after illness or family emergencies, will you get an accountability buddy to encourage you to show up and get moving again?
  • For the times when it feels almost impossible to continue with your health program, will you create an alternative eating or exercise plan?

What’s your beat-the-challenge plan? If you don’t have one, it’s time to create that strategy.

Don’t wait until the challenge shows up. Brainstorm all the things that could get in your way—the “inevitables”—and then devise strategies to overcome them.

Use this Goal Achievement Secret Weapon

To solidify your crush-the-obstacle plan and ensure you follow through with your goals, use the same secret weapon used by athletes, actors, entrepreneurs, musicians, and other highly successful people. Visualize yourself not only starting and completing the process of reaching your goal but also getting through the tough patches that sometimes arise on the way to “done.”

That’s right. Visualize yourself overcoming the challenges you might encounter on the way to achieving your goal. See yourself moving smoothly, quickly and efficiently toward the completion of your goals.

Think of a marathon runner. She visualizes a great start to the race and finishing first. But she also envisions the point one-third of the way through the race when she feels tired…she sees herself powering through and finding the energy to continue. And in her mind’s eye, she sees herself getting to the halfway point—and the last mile—when she thinks she can’t do it because her muscles ache and her chest is heaving. Then she imagines herself summoning the change in mindset (“I can do this!”) and energy necessary to run faster and with more strength and commitment than before. Finally, she visualizes herself succeeding despite the challenges she faced.

visualize your way to successThe marathon runners mental practice period convinces both her mind and body that she can, indeed, succeed. And so she does…

And you can, too.

I wrote about the power of visualization in my newest book, Creative Visualization for Writers. Visualization is not a new concept, but it’s a time-tested one you can put to use this year to increase your chances of achieving your goals.

Don’t just focus your attention on setting and achieving goals. Focus it on how you will accomplish them. Be prepared for whatever might show up. And you will find yourself checking your goals off as “done” by this time next year—if not before.

What strategies have helped you achieve your goals in the past?

Want 2017 to be the year you crush it with your goals? Get a copy of my FREE ebook, 20 High-Performance Strategies and Habits You Can Implement TODAY! Just fill out the form below. (The ebook will arrive attached to an email.)

And download the application for a free one-hour Certified High Performance Coaching strategy session. (Then email it to me at Let’s figure out together what you need to do to make this year your best year ever.

Don’t wait! It’s your time…now…to level up so you can achieve your potential, fulfill your purpose and live your life fully.

Photo copyright: Weerapat Wattanapichayakul/

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