Goals help us to envision our futures and, oftentimes, they are how we stay motivated even through setbacks. Long-term goals are the big ones; they could be anywhere on the professional to the personal spectrum. Whether it is to be promoted at work, to practice mindfulness, or to learn a new skill or technology, one thing is clear about long-term goals. They are OVERWHELMING!

Just thinking about all of the steps you have to take to achieve this huge goal can be completely strenuous and frustrating. Sometimes this frustration can lead to wanting to drop the goal completely or to procrastinate on accomplishing it. We know how it feels to be afraid to approach an important goal for fear of failing. With these five tips for accomplishing long-term goals, we hope you feel more ready to tackle and accomplish all of your long-term goals.

Set short-term goals or tasks that lead up to the accomplishment of your long-term goal.

Like we said before, a factor that scares us away from accomplishing our big goals is the gravity of it. Its importance makes us afraid to approach measures that will show us progress. A great way to make your long-term goal less intimidating is to break it up into smaller tasks that eventually will lead you to reach your long-term goal.

For example, if your long-term goal is to get a promotion at work, you can have small goals like (1) follow through on 5 projects from start to finish, (2) let your boss know that you are interested in being promoted and show them that you are working towards it, and (3) display your commitment in work in your own unique way. Of course, the small tasks you set for yourself should be catered to you and your situation, and they will surely make you think through your goal and devise a plan that will help you reach it.

Take on one goal at a time.

This one is pretty self-explanatory, but one long-term goal might already be completely overwhelming, and adding another one into your scope of vision can lead to the abandonment of both goals. Focusing on one goal at a time will make sure that you put all of your attention and efforts towards one important goal. Only bite as much as you can chew!

Find connections between your goal and your values

It is obvious that following through on a goal is easiest when it aligns with your core beliefs and passions. When this happens, we end up really enjoying going through with our long-term goal. How many times have you given up on something because you didn’t enjoy it?

When you enjoy what you’re doing, it doesn’t even feel like a goal, but more like an activity. An easy way to figure out which of your values is being fulfilled through your goal is by asking yourself, “Why am I trying to accomplish this goal?” The reasons may be to achieve something, to have more (financial) stability, or to gain a leadership position. The answers really are endless, and the answer is probably personal and will give you more motivation to accomplish your goal.

Learn from your setbacks

Discouraging as they are, we have a lot to learn from our setbacks. Maybe your presentation at work did not go as well as you had hoped, or maybe someone else is in line for that promotion you want and they are doing very well, or maybe even you had an awful day and could not reach a deadline you had set for yourself to complete a task. It happens!

The best thing we can do in these situations is to decide to go on. Every setback can give you all the more reason to try harder or to try a different way. Perhaps from the setback, you now know what not to do.

Make sure that your habits promote an environment in which you can accomplish your long-term goal

This tip is more of a way to alter your lifestyle so that achieving your long-term goal is easier. Small things like regulating your sleep schedule, making sure you’re eating well and having good relationships at work and in your personal life can contribute to a more productive environment when it comes to your long-term goal.

Bad habits might become a distraction that stands between you and your achievements, so it is important to correct these habits and give yourself the best chance to accomplish everything you want! Correcting your habits is the difference between going in circles around your goal and hitting the goal.

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