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Staying Focused - 4 Steps To Help You Stay Focused On Your Goals

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One of the first big steps you take when starting your journey towards making your dreams come true is
writing down your goals. Visualizing really helps. Making a list, post it notes on your mirror, vision boards. All of those things help keep your goals right in front of your face. However, goals without action are simply wishes.

Do you find yourself making the same goals every year? Month? Week? That means you are making great goals but not so great at accomplishing them. What's stopping you?

1. Do you have a plan?
Setting smart goals are very important. Next, establish how you are going to get them done. Losing weight is a great goal. Setting a realistic goal of losing 10-20 pounds in one year certainly doable. What's the plan though? Weekly meal prep? How many days per week is physical activity planned? What activities are you participating in on those days? Zumba on Monday? Weight training on Wednesday? Yoga on Friday? What's the plan? A plan for daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly activities helps monitor the progress toward meeting the goal. Use the alarm on your cell phone calendar. Write things down on your calendar. Whatever it takes to stick to the plan.

2. Create a sustainable schedule
Be it starting a fitness routine or working on your novel, commit to a schedule that is not overwhelming. Committing to 10 minutes of physical activity three mornings per week is more palatable than 2 hours in the gym five days per week when you're just getting started. Writing one chapter per day might be a bit much compared to committing to writing one chapter per week. Most stall and do nothing when they feel overwhelmed. Doing nothing will definitely not help you get closer to your goals.

3. Make your to-do list ahead of time
At the end of your day, assess what is complete. Make the list for the next day based on urgency and approaching deadlines. It helps to know exactly what your day is going to look like instead figuring it out as the day goes along. Helping organize the day's activities to make sure it runs smoothly and is productive.

4. Minimize distractions
In the age of technology, there are more distractions than ever before. Alerts, buzzing, text messages, phone calls, you name it. The only way to get anything done is to stay focused. Turning off all notifications while working on a project will prevent "popcorn brain". Popcorn brain is when your brain is so accustomed to constant electronic stimulation of multitasking that it is unfit for focusing on one thing at a time. Turn your cell phone off. Silence all ringers. Mute all notifications. Schedule your focus time for when family is sleeping or when everyone has left the office. Constant distractions make for minimal productivity because we have to constantly refocused. Keep distractions to a minimum and maximize productivity.

After visualizing your goal, construct plan to make it happen. Set a weekly, monthly, and quarterly schedule of activities that isn't overwhelming. Create a to-do list at the end of each day. Minimize distractions while working on tasks.
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