I have so much fun when we do the Ask Me Anything game on Instagram, and recently got a great question from someone in my community. They asked me about how I set my goals, how I lay out my dreams, and how I plan to accomplish them. Figuring out how to achieve big dreams isn’t always easy, but I’ve come to find there a few specific things that work really well for not only me, but also my kids!
I am a big believer in breaking things down into manageable chunks. But I have to admit: I wasn’t always like this. I am naturally a dreamer. In fact, I feel like it’s one of my better qualities. I don’t hold hack when it comes to ideas of what I’d like to achieve.
But it wasn’t until fairly recently that I switched my approach and started to – very slowly – work my way towards reaching my dreams, goals, and ambitions. I’ve still got a long list of things to do, and a vision board I’m chipping away at, but I’m happy someone asked me this. I wanted to take the time to elaborate a little bit more on the short answer I gave in my stories. And share some things I’ve read that help me get stuff done and how to achieve the big dreams that you might have.
The Book that Taught Me How to Achieve BIG Dreams
I was inspired by a book called The One Thing by Gary W. Keller and Jay Papasan. It’s a self-help book, and if either of the two authors are reading this blog, I just want to say thank you! Your suggestions have changed my trajectory.
Their book explores the Dos and Don’ts of goal setting. It helped me to switch my focus from lofty long-term aspirations to small, short-term steps that are manageable and most importantly, doable! Essentially, if you have a very big goal, say a five-year plan, you can get it done quicker by cutting it down into achievable chunks.
Ask Yourself These Questions to Map out your BIG Dreams
For example, if you have a massive dream that you want to achieve within the next five years.
Ask yourself this: What is it I can do in the next year to help this dream become a reality? What’s the one thing I can do in the next 12 months to make this happen?
Then, it’s time to divide your plan further: What’s the one thing I can do in the next month to help that one year target become a reality? Don’t try to jump ahead, I know it’s tempting! Your monthly target should be helping your end of year goal, not your five-year dream. You’re not doing periodic tasks to achieve your five-year plan. Instead, you’re doing the smaller stuff and slowly reaching the next milestone.
You can divide it up even further to make it even easier on yourself. Ask yourself: what can I do in the next week to help you achieve my monthly goal? Then: what can I do today to help me reach my weekly target? And eventually, you come to: What can I do right now, to help me achieve what needs to be done by the end of the day. What’s the one thing I can do right now to help me reach my goal?
I love this method. I wish I’d found it sooner. You just keep going back, and that’s how these little bite-size goals help your big dream feel obtainable.
How I Use this Method with my Kids to Achieve their BIG Dreams
I’m actually using this approach to teach my kids about patience, setting goals, long-term planning, and how to achieve their BIG dreams. Jayda really wants to make a World’s Cheer Team. Like she really, really wants to make the team some day. Simply telling her, if she works hard enough, she could make the team down the line just isn’t going to work anymore.
Jayda caught me by surprise when she asked if we could make a plan to help her dream become a reality. It’s hard to work towards goals that are so far away. So we broke it down.
Well, if the bite-size dividing method allows me to save up for holidays and helped me and my husband buy our dream house, it’ll work for Jayda to practice her cheerleading. So, my daughter and I sat down and made her plan. Here’s what it looked like:
- Within five years, Jayda would like to make the World’s team.
- In three years, Jayda would like to learn her full.
- Within one year, Jayda would like to learn her standing back tuck.
- Within one month, Jayda would like to master her tuck on her air track and take lessons.
- This week, Jayda will practice daily outside.
- Today, Jayda will try and land three on the trampoline.
- Right now, Jayda can stretch and work on conditioning before focusing on today’s goal.
This was one month ago. Jayda has now nearly mastered her tuck.
So, how do I achieve big dreams in bite-size pieces? I hope this helped you see how I map out goals and hopefully this will help you as well!