If you look at the most successful people in the world, you will see that they often stay mission focused in every phase of their day:
● They wake up early, stay up late and dedicate themselves to personal development.
● They know there are things they need to learn and things they need to secure from the expertise and energy expenditure of others.
● They wake up every day with purpose and close every evening with an honest and thorough assessment of what went right and wrong.
● They do not dwell on their challenges nor do they bask in the celebrations of their success.
● They know what they want and how to take the steps, in each day, towards their goals.
If you are struggling to find time to build your dream, maybe it’s time to take a good hard look at where you have been placing your value and how you have been spending your time. Chances are, if you look close enough, you will find many areas where you can squeeze out the extra time you need to get ahead.
You will need to prioritize, strategize and actualize.
The following questions might help you narrow your focus and better create a daily plan that matches your future ambitions and long term aspirations.
What does success mean to you?
What are the stakes?
How do you define victory?
Everyone has the same 24 hours in the day and yet not everyone uses their time wisely. What’s more, many people who think they are squeezing out every bit of sweat equity possible are not being realistic about the amount of effort they are putting towards reaching their vision of success.
There is a good chance you are not using your time as wisely as you could. If you are feeling like you do not have enough time to build your dream, maybe it is worth considering what other areas of your life you are investing too much of your time on.
These could include:
● The time spent with your friends and family.
● The time spent engaged with non-essential hobbies such as watching TV, playing on social media or using messaging applications.
● The time spent preparing or eating meals.
● The time spent going to bars, nightclubs or sporting events.
● And this list could go on…
The fact is, building your dream is going to take hard work, dedication and sacrifice. You may have to make tough choices between the ways you used to spend your time and the best things you could be doing to get ahead now. The bottom line though, is that with even a little intentional design and reconfiguration of your schedule, you can find the time to do everything you want and need.
Some ideas for cultivating the time you need:
● Wake up earlier. The morning for many people is one of the most productive times of the day. Even just an extra 15 or 30 minutes could be used to either focus on activities that will help you reach your dreams such as reading, working on building your brand, or sending out essential entrepreneurial correspondence. On the flip side, you could also use this extra time to do things you would normally do later in the business day or after work. For instance, if you start your day with a workout, some meditation or even just spending quality time with your partner or children, you might be freed up to use your time later in the day working towards your goals.
● Prepare all your meals on one day of the week or order a weekly meal plan delivery service. Top athletes all of the world struggle to stay in peak shape your round.
For many of them, the demands of work, family and training, make it hard for them to prepare or even buy meals for themselves everyday. Rather than break their diets or sacrifice time, they either take one day a week and prepare large batches of food which they can then use throughout the week or they subscribe to a meal delivery service.
Either option can help so that you squeeze out extra time when you really need it. An additional thought could be to devote your mealtime less to playing with your smartphone and more towards working on professional development. Many of the most successful people in the world use the 30 or 60 minutes around lunchtime as an opportunity to focus on the things they need to build their side hustles and dreams.
● Work smarter, not harder. I’ve been saying that this is my motto for 2017 and I really mean it. With all the tools available to us today, there is no reason to struggle needlessly. I am not saying hard work is not important, I am suggesting that if you balance your time and priorities correctly you might find that say, instead of struggling for 6 months to learn coding so you can build your own website, maybe that time would better be spent hiring an expert who can assist you instead. You will invest some money upfront but you will save so much time in the long run. This process can be repeated in many areas of your business strategy. Some things are worth doing yourself, others are better in the hands of those with more time and expertise. If you need more time to get things done, think long and hard about who in your life you already know who might be able to help. When I was launching Treadstone Performance, I had to call on people from all over my life to assist me. I realized that this wasn’t a choice borne out of weakness but a decision based in wisdom. Stop struggling alone, use your networks of influence and find the resources you already have access to. Professional services like taxes, graphic design, copywriting etc are most likely already represented in your social media contact lists. If you need something, ask for it and you might be surprised how easy it is to network with the contacts you already have access to and trust. Sometimes it takes a village to elevate a dream. Stay open minded.
● Cancel out the things that aren’t serving your dreams. No one has ever reached their dreams by sitting back and spending hours a day watching television. No one has ever realized their truest potential spending half their week recovering from their weekend intoxication. You already have the time, you are just devoting it to other things.
Rethink your priorities, reconsider your hobbies and align these with your short, medium and long term goals.
● Stay mission focused. So you hit a snag? Things didn’t go your way and you have to face some adversity? Don’t languish in your false delusions, dust yourself up and keep on going. The same goes for hitting new milestones and reaching new pinnacles of success. Yes it is important to celebrate and honor your process but you can’t just take every excuse you find to stop working. Well you could but you wouldn’t be mission focused. The most successful people stay on their game in rain or shine, good times or bad times. They don’t waste their work days, nor do they waste their days off. In fact, many entrepreneurs will specifically schedule sick days or days off not to recover or party but to focus on building their side hustles. The time you need is already there, you just need to cultivate it.
● Work towards clear and achievable goals. Set daily, weekly, monthly, yearly and longer term deadlines built on clear and achievable successive steps. Consider working within a SMART framework. If you aren’t familiar with this concept it is a gold standard within many of the world’s top organizations.
SMART goals are built on the following foundation:
Specific – target a specific area for improvement.
Measurable – quantify or at least suggest an indicator of progress.
Assignable – specify who will do it.
Realistic – state what results can realistically be achieved, given available resources.
Time-related – specify when the result(s) can be achieved.
It is absolutely possible to reach your dreams!
You have to believe to achieve!
Get serious about what you really want and dedicate yourself to it fully. This is your life and no one else’s, if it doesn’t matter to you, why should it matter to anyone else. You alone are the master of your destiny. Dedicate yourself to the things that matter and you will begin to see and feel the progress that before may have felt elusive. This is your life, this is your chance, this is your year, make it happen in 2017!