The coming of a New Year probably has you stepping back to take a look at the BIG picture. Maybe it even has you thinking about your Dare-to-Do-Dream. You know, the one that seems unreachable, the one you never admit to dreaming.
The thing about dreams is that when you think about it, they aren’t all that different from your everyday to-do list – only that dreams are a little bigger and require more effort to get there. But just like long to-do lists, a systematic approach can (and will) get you there.
The trouble with dreams is we tend to focus on the end goal, unable to see the path that leads us there. That’s probably because the steps are too many or require too much time to hold in our imagination. That’s where goal mapping comes it.
How to Get to Your Goal One Step-At-a-Time
Design the End Conditions – What are the exact conditions you need to make your dream come true? What would make the success of your dream project a no-brainer? Who do you need to know? What skills do you need to master? Get detailed and specific!
Attach It to a Timeline – The trouble with dreams is until we turn them into concrete goals and give them an end date, they never seem to come true. Pick a dream launch date (remember to use the S.M.A.R.T. Goal Setting strategy).
Work Backward S-L-O-W-L-Y – Chances are you are nowhere near the end conditions (that’s why your dream seems so darn impossible). Consider them your mini projects. Take each of the end conditions and map out a path that gets you there.
Divide and Conquer – Break the map down into smaller tasks and start checking off those to-do’s! These are your mini milestones – make sure you accomplish at least 2 of them each week!
Plan for A and B – Design backup into your goal map by identifying several ways to ‘get there’. Pursue the parallel paths until it becomes obvious that one path is the best way to reach your ultimate goal.
Remind Yourself Daily – Dealing with the day-to-day to-do’s tends to blind us to our bigger purpose. Post a visual reminder, mark off time in your calendar, find an accountability partner – do whatever you need to do to stay on track!