If you’ve listened to Zig Ziglar very much, you know that one of his signature themes is goal-setting.
Not many of us set definite goals. Even fewer write them down. One study determined that 3% of graduating seniors at the college level do this.
There are a few roadblocks.
One is fear. Specifically, we fear failing. What if you set a goal, tell your friends about it, and then fail? Sure, that would be embarrassing. You might avoid others for a while. You might keep your mouth shut hoping they’ll forget it. And over time, they probably will.
Unless you run a touchdown pass in the wrong direction in the big game.
But chances are, you won’t have that kind of attention.
We fear we will set our goals too high. That is, we don’t really think we can reach them. And since our thoughts determine our behavior, we will have designed a self-fulfilling prophecy.
The problem is we often look at the end result with little thought of the steps we’ll have to take to get there. We may fail to calculate how many steps are required and may possibly take the wrong ones.
But is that the end of the world? Is that a reason to give up?
Every day a plane takes off for a destination. Along the way the plane will naturally veer off course. At that point, the pilot turns around, heads back to the airport, and starts over.
Of course not.
He makes course corrections as he goes. It’s the same when you’re driving. If you take your hands off the wheel, eventually you’ll end up running off the road. So you make small adjustments, so small in fact that you probably aren’t even aware of them.
If you want to reach a target destination, and you’ve never been there before, don’t you pull out a map and plot every turn? If you want to reach a destination you set for yourself, the same kind of planning is required.
When we look at the end result we desire, it can be daunting, especially if the change is big. We can overcome this by setting daily plans of action that take little steps toward the faraway destination – the final achievement of the goal.
Lots of little bites make the difference.
Besides, it works for termites.