“Focus precedes success.” Bobb Biehl
Last week I shared with you a goal-setting method for those who hate goal-setting. It appeals more to people who like problem-solving.
But whether you prefer problem-solving over traditional goal-setting methods, or vice versa, it’s important to stay focused.
So how do you stay focused on your goals and solutions, especially during a pandemic?
Taking stock during a pandemic
At the beginning of 2020, I set some goals for myself like I do every year. But then the pandemic occurred which threw a wrench into my plans.
However, instead of letting the mandatory quarantine totally derail my goals, I chose to focus on those I could work on during the extended lockdown.
One of the things I did to stay focused on those goals was to follow what I teach my clients. I help them not just set goals but achieve them so they can pursue their passions in life.
I have an 8-step method to achieving goals which has always worked for me, and also works for many of my clients.
The method has helped me achieve several short-term objectives over the past few years that have added up to the achievement of some long-term and ongoing goals.
- Improving my career coaching business.
- Paying off any and all debts.
- Saving more money.
- Learning new things.
- Having fun and adventurous experiences.
- Growing spiritually.
- released my 3rd book
- took a writing class
- completed a six-month jiu-jitsu fitness class
- increased my business’s revenue by 47% and profit by 33%
- spent more time traveling to see family
- took a vacation to Florida
- went on a silent retreat
- paid off my car
- and got on track to pay off my home two years early
…all while running a business, recovering from a shoulder injury, helping my uncle in Knoxville who’s ill, and having to undergo surgery this past January.
I’m not special. Anyone can accomplish similar goals, as long as they stay focused and follow through on their goals.
4 things that keep me focused on my goals
When I look at the above list considering all I had on my plate, I wonder how in the world I’d accomplished so much in such a short time.
But I know there were four things that helped me stay focused and achieve all of the above:
#1. Writing down my goals
The simple act of writing down my goals made it more likely for me to achieve them.
I noticed most of the things I wrote down got accomplished, while most of the things I didn’t write down, didn’t get accomplished.
In fact, statistics indicate that people who write down their goals are 50% more likely to achieve their goals than those who don’t.
So even if the pandemic is preventing you from accomplishing some of your goals, you can use this time to put them in writing or update the ones you’ve already written down.
#2. Following a plan
I practiced what I preach by following the 8-Step Goal-Achievement Plan I’ve developed for my clients.
You don’t have to be a paNASH client to utilize this plan. It’s available for free when you subscribe to my basic, advanced, or premium subscription services. (Click here to see what’s included in each subscription level.)
Now may be a good time to start planning some future goals, even if you don’t yet know the full impact of the pandemic on your future plans. You can start planning now, and then you’ll already have something to tweak if necessary in the near future.
#3. Tracking my goals
I kept track of my goals and the steps to achieving them in my Passion Planner.
A Passion Planner is a wonderful calendar resource letting you map out your goals for the year and then showing you how to prioritize the steps to achieving those goals.
“The key to balance is scheduling your priorities a year in advance.” Bobb Biehl (executive coach and author)
The other great thing about the Passion Planner is it has wonderful reflection questions at the end of each month, such as:
- What were the three biggest lessons you learned this past month?
- How are you different between this past month and the month before it?
- What three things can you improve on this upcoming month?
Also, the Passion Planner comes in an academic version starting in August and going to July 2021. And it comes in an undated version, letting you start anytime. These calendar options are especially helpful if you feel like chucking the awful first half of 2020 and starting again with a do-over!
#4. Staying disciplined
Staying disciplined is the most important key to keeping myself focused on my goals!
Like I said earlier, I’m not special. It just takes commitment to sit down and plan what I want to accomplish, diligence to complete the necessary steps, and discipline to follow through on what I tell myself I’m going to do.
And when life throws a curve ball like a pandemic, I remain flexible to revisit, rethink, and retweak my original goals and solutions.
You can do this too!
Stay focused during the remainder of the pandemic
Without these four things, I never, ever would’ve been able to achieve all I have in the past 12 months.
While other methods work better for some people, this is what works best for me in staying focused on my goals.
I’ve also seen it work well for many of my clients. Perhaps it could work for you too!
Just imagine what you can accomplish this summer as you continue during this pandemic to find more time for what’s most important in life.