Are you someone who loves 30-day challenges? Do you get lost in self-improvement books and enjoy learning new things, but somehow end up feeling overwhelmed?
When you have a growth mindset, there always seems to be a new skill or hobby you want to become an expert in.
You end up pinning tons of Pinterest posts. Your Amazon shopping cart is loaded with how-to books and “necessary” tools. The learning process hasn’t even begun, and you’re already overwhelmed (and broke).
You’re most likely stuck in Preparation Mode.
It’s not easy to move onto the next step when each Instagram advertisement says you need to learn how to code or start a CrossFit gym membership. The world is constantly bombarding you with what they want you to spend your time and money on.
After years of picking up new hobbies & never following through, I finally figured out how to reach my personal goals without feeling overwhelmed.
1. Narrow down your goals
When you have goals in all aspects of life, it’s hard to prioritize them.
You may want to eat healthier, start a side-business, run a marathon, read more books, be current on politics, and get a promotion.
It’s easy to want it all & want it quick. But if you want to pass Preparation Mode, you have to prioritize what to focus on.
I recommend separating your goals into three categories that represent three aspects of your life. For example, I separate mine into Lifestyle, Health, and Career.
This way, you avoid
2. Prioritize using mind maps
The best way to prioritize is by mind-mapping. If you start off your mind map with a central idea of “Goals”, it can branch out into your three categories.
Next, each category can branch out into subcategories. For example, your Health category can branch out into Nutrition, Physical Health, Mental Health, etc.
Then each subcategory can branch out into new habits. For example, Nutrition can branch out into habits like “eat more greens”, “make smoothies every morning”, and “bring in lunch to work”. These habits should be reasonable & actionable.
3. Three good habits a day keep the overwhelm away
Once your mind map is complete, circle ONE habit from each category. You should have three habits circled
Try three good habits at a time. If one habit doesn’t work with your lifestyle, try another one from the same category. When you’ve successfully incorporated a good habit into your everyday life, choose a new habit from the same category to tackle on.
New habits can take months to truly conquer. Often, you’ll lose the habit and have to start all over again. If it was easy, everyone would be a vegan, marathon-running, multi-millionaire entrepreneur.
Don’t give up.
It’s better to focus on three new habits at a time than running in circles trying to master everything.
4. Schedule quarterly check-ins
Every three months, reflect on the progress you made. For example, if you’re working towards eating healthier, reflect on what habits you
Maybe bringing in lunch to work was easier than making smoothies every morning. Maybe eating more greens came easier through drinking green juices instead of eating salads.
You can still reach your personal goals even if you choose the path of least resistance. Find what works for you.
5. Block out time for learning
You want to spend the majority of your time DOING & not researching. If you have time blocked out for learning, you won’t give in to the temptation of the Google search rabbit hole.
I schedule 1-2 one-hour blocks per week dedicated to learning. I like to save learning blocks for days off, so I can focus while diving into the subject.
Although learning can be tough, it’s often the passive part of reaching a goal. It’s more difficult to apply what you learned and create a habit out of it.
6. If your new habit is stressing you out, STOP DOING IT
Your good habit will do NO good if it stresses you out. You can be a vegan, marathon-running, multi-millionaire entrepreneur, but if you’re highly stressed, might as well eat fast food every meal.
Stress is a lot more harmful to your mind & body than it seems. Reach your personal goals with a clear mind & a positive attitude, and you’ll enjoy the benefits of your hard work.