Every year around this time, I find myself reflecting on the things I have accomplished and the many more goals that I still have in my heart. It could be all the lights in New York City, the general spirit in the winter air or even just the sense of hustle and bustle -- the holiday season always makes me feel proud and energized to reach for the stars. Regardless of the time of year or where you find your inspiration, going after your dreams should always be at the forefront of your mind.
Great ideas or wishes, both personal and business, start as dreams. By using a plan, a timeline and goals, turning those dreams into reality is completely possible. Sometimes taking that first step is the toughest part, but once you make an initial leap, the rest is all about finding your stride. Have you ever looked back and remembered the big dreams you once had? The ones you put on hold for all the emergencies and the daily to-dos that stood between you and your dreams? We have all been there -- putting our passions on the back burner while we take care of life's little must-dos -- but during this inspirational time of year and on the brink of 2013, it's time to make those old dreams a reality.
No matter your age -- if you're in your 20s or your 80s -- you can still find a way to fulfill the passions that live inside you by putting a plan in place. Without an action plan, those passions will forever live in the back of your mind rather than becoming a reality. With a little belief in yourself and some hard work, you can roll into the new year with anticipation and pride for what's to come for you. Here are my tips for jumping in, making your dreams a reality and never looking back:
Set attainable goals. By setting small, achievable goals, you will eventually complete the ultimate goal and reach your dreams. Set goals that you can tackle on a daily basis -- baby steps to the finale. I do this with everything, and I make myself live by the daily goals so if I miss one day, it's easy to pick up where I left off and get back on track.
Sacrifice. Meeting your goals can be a tough road, and more work than you ever expected. Making it all happen will require some sacrifice. You may have to give up nights with your friends, parties, or even sleep less 'til you get where you want to be. I always find that time is a critical part of the solution, and finding time is difficult. It is likely part of the reason you haven't achieved your dreams yet. You must carve out time. Make your dreams the priority and you will still have time to do all the things you always did once you make it. So plan on sleeping when you make it.
Ask a mentor. When you find someone who truly epitomizes the type of living you want, ask him or her for guidance and advice along the way. Having a mentor is a great way to gain perspective on how to make a plan for achieving your goals. They will be flattered you asked them.
Live on the edge. Trying to achieve your dreams can be terrifying. Just remember: It's normal to be scared, but if you don't try, nothing will ever change and you'll never get there.
Capitalize on your strengths. Know how best to use yourself to achieve your dreams and when it's time to gather some help from those around you. Maybe you need a little help with a business plan or financial planning -- it's okay to leave that stuff up to the pros! Take what you know best and trust yourself to utilize those skills so you can finally do what you have been dreaming of.
Just do it! People ask me all the time, "What do I do to make it?" "How do I get started?" The simple answer is you just do it! Nothing more -- nothing less. Think about it. Ask any question you want, and that will be the answer.
As the holiday season continues to glow, take a moment to reflect on what you have put on hold and why, define what you want and go for it. Don't let the small stuff get in the way of the big things that you have always wanted to achieve. Step out of your comfort zone and do the things necessary to get where you want to be. Remember, it's never to late to be what you may have been. Just do it.
I believe in you! Happy holidays.
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