Begin with the end in mind. Start with the end outcome and work backwards to make your dream possible. - Wayne Dyer
Many people want success to come to them in a form akin to winning the lottery. They hope it will happen to them and then sit around waiting. These folks seem to be hoping that success will be an overnight, magical experience that includes a leprechaun granting a wish while they are riding on a unicorn.
Maybe you don’t think quite that fictitiously, but if you’re just sitting around and hoping that success will come to you, then you might as well be in a fairy tale!
Truly successful people understand that life is not a fairy tale. Life is a journey. It is the composite of a series of choices that we make. Something more akin to a choose-your-own-adventure book. Each day, month, and year, we can choose our own adventure. We can choose to journey on the path toward success.
Focus: In order to be able to get where you’re going, you need to focus enough to determine what it is that you want out of life. The definition of success will be different for everyone, and you need to know what yours is. Forget what other people think and focus on the vision of what success looks like for you.
Once you’ve decided what you want, determination and organization will help you to achieve your goals. Horses are often given blinders so that they don’t get distracted by things by the side of the road. In a similar way, you’ll need to exercise self-discipline to keep yourself on the right path.
Direction: Once you know where you’re going, you’ll need to make map of how to get there. If only life had a GPS, everything would be much easier! But you can certainly create your own map for the direction you want to head. Just as when planning out a road trip, you start with the end point in mind. Then you set your journey up to get you there.
In planning out success, begin with the outcome that you want, then move backwards to where you are. You may need to clear out some roadblocks along the way. You’ll stop for rest and food and fuel. You may even find yourself on a detour a time or two. But you’ll always be moving toward turning your dreams into reality.
Course Correction: Establishing checkpoints is an important part of making sure you’re staying on the right path. Say you get on the highway to drive to New York from Chicago and you’ve been driving for hours. When you start noticing names of place like Iowa City and Omaha, you may soon realize that you’re headed in the wrong direction! You need to adjust your route.
In the same way, checkpoints along the way of life can help you to evaluate to be sure you’re headed in the right direction. If your short-term goals are taking you where you want to go, then you’re still on the clear path toward success. But if you’ve been diverted along the way, regular checkpoints allow you to correct your course, make adjustments, and get back on the road toward success.
I’m not here to tell you that success is easy. Life can be filled with challenges, distractions and detours. But if you know where your going, then you do have the power to choose your own adventure! Stop waiting around for the magic to happen to you. Make your own magic happen instead!
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