Fast tracking your goals made easy

From Annabel Dolphin, Miles Dolphin Consulting Group

Imagine if you could fast track the most important goals out of your head and into reality. What if you could make 100% change within 100 days? Sound simple enough? Inspired by Nikki Fogden-Moore’s article recently in the newspaper, I want to transform the concept of “The 1% Rule” into “The 1% Goal".
The premise of the article was to ask readers to dedicate just 1% (or 14.4 minutes) of your time each day towards one of your most important goals – your health, your business or something that is truly fulfilling personally. Whilst simplistic in nature, it does have strong roots.

The negative effect of too many goals

In my best personal goal-setting frame of mind, I think my record was to set over 38 individual goals across eight different areas in my life. In hindsight, it was a complete overhaul of my life, ranging from family, relationships, financial, career, mind, health, learning and lifestyle. The thing is, I never really succeeded because whilst I was working on a complete overhaul of my life, I was missing one of the key foundations to successful goal achievement.
In a workplace context, recent research from Ordenez and her colleagues in “Goals Gone Wild” argues that there are negative side effects to outlining too many goals. Research has shown that individuals with multiple goals tend to concentrate on only one goal. In addition, goals that are easier to achieve and quantify are usually given more attention than other goals.
This explains why sometimes our most important goals (such as health) are put on the back burner for other, more easily reached goals.

Finding your 1% goal

Start with a list of your top five most important goals to you – they can be as little or as big as you want.
Then, take a step back and look at your list. Is there a 20 percenter? You know, the goal that will take 20% of your effort but give you 80% of the results that you are looking for? Perhaps you just need to find something that will ignite your passion or drive. Whatever way you use to prioritise, just pick one goal.

Practice Makes Progress

Putting it all together, here is how to make your 1% goal a success:

  • Review your daily schedule and find the 14.4 minutes every day that you will dedicate towards achieving your goal. If you find it difficult sticking to goals that you make, try and allocate the same time every day to work on your goal. This hardwires your action into your brain and reduces the likelihood of making excuses.

  • Make sure you put it somewhere visible or put in place a system to remind you. I loved Stephen Bradbury’s reminder on the roof of his bedroom. Every morning when his alarm went off at 4:30am, he saw the sign ‘Get Up, It’s the Olympics’. Personally, I use my online calendar because it will send me an electronic reminder to my phone, which I normally have with me.

  • Practice makes progress. Try and do this for 100 days to see how much progress you make on your goal. Do not be disheartened if you fall off the horse. Just reset and pick up where you left off. The more consistent you are, the more likely you are able to hardwire a new habit of success.

If it is time to make a change in your life, why not start with your 1% goal?