Writing notes daily can do wonders for you. It’s important to take some time for yourself just to reflect on what you want to accomplish. Just like a workout log, you have to mark your accomplishments on paper, whether it be through academics or sports. It doesn’t have to stop there. Writing down your career/life goals or even your greatest fears will help you stay focused.
Imagine that you have a goal to break 5 minutes in the mile, or to get a 4.3 GPA in school. Now imagine what it’s like to write down what you want to achieve, and then look back after a couple of months have passed.
What will happen? Two simple outcomes:
A. You’ll see that you accomplished your goals
B. You’ll see that you didn’t accomplish anything
With Option A, it’s a rewarding experience to see all of the hard work pay off. You had a clear goal and you set out to crush it. Feel free to look at your accomplishments as much as you want. You might surprise yourself to see that you surpassed what you intended to do. By looking at the exact goal you wrote out yourself, you might even joke about where you were back then. You’ll realize how far you’ve come.
With Option B, you might be tempted to look at yourself in defeat. You flat out might be completely frustrated with yourself. You’ll tear up that note, go into your room, cry, maybe watch some Youtube Videos, sedate yourself with video games and/or ice-cream and then pick yourself up- only to walk to the bathroom.
A lot of the recommended self help books, such as Think and Grow Rich, remind the reader to write down some sort of plan or goal you have for the future. Napoleon Hill stresses that a key ingredient for success, is to have a definite purpose, and to have a burning desire to execute that plan.
There’s a chapter where Hill reminds the reader to write down a personal statement, and to reread it and visualize your accomplishments every night.
An organized plan that YOU wrote is an easy way to keep yourself motivated. Just like with a to do list, you need to add structure to your plan. This’ll keep you grounded to what you want to accomplish, and keep track of your progress. When you don’t write down your goals, those dreams and desires just stay in your head. They might even change as time goes on, but when you mark your goals on what you SPECIFICALLY want to ACCOMPLISH, and how you’ll set out to do it…you’ll surprise yourself.
Without a goal, you’re just working for nothing. You’ll waste time and effort for something that you don’t even know you want. A goal gives a man or woman a clear path to follow. Think of it as a deadline, without a deadline…you’ll put your work off for another day. Everyone does it.
During one summer in High School, my Cross Country team met up together to plan out some goals for our upcoming season. Aside from running goals, we added in plans we had for our grades. I laughed along with the activity and didn’t really give it much of an effort. I put on some goals that were unrealistic and joked about it with my friends. One year later after reviewing them, I surprised myself with how close I came to them. I managed to break one or two of those goals. This boosted my confidence.
Unfortunately, coming close doesn’t mean anything if you don’t get the job done and bring home the trophy. I analyzed my marks, and thought how could I approach my goals at another angle. Would I have to try a new core workout routine? Did I balance my time with school and running? I wrote down the steps I would take to take on these goals, and looked back to see what did and didn’t work. If I didn’t write down these goals, or the steps to take them, I would probably think in my head to try out the same thing and get the same results. Insanity.
I regularly write down a list of goals before my summer training, and before each semester starts. I’ll open up a Microsoft Word document, title it “Goals,” and start writing. This’ll stay on the computer for a couple of weeks, and I’ll check back to it periodically. Once I wrap up my training, and prepare for the actual first day of school, I’ll look back at my goals and analyze what went right and what was a disaster. Try it out.