What is a better way to start the new year than with a recipe on how to become successful? In the Harvard Business Review, author Heidi Grant explains what successful people do differently. I have translated this into a list of 7 changes to make in your mindset this year:
1. Be more specific
Start being more specific when defining your goals. Instead of saying “I want to have a job this year”, start thinking about what kind of job and where, for instance. Once you have defined your goal more narrowly, you can start making specific moves, which will make it easier for you to meet your goal.
2. Set targets
Start setting targets for yourself. It is great to have specific goals, but with no targets in mind, there is really not much incentive to actually start doing something. Therefore, tell yourself by which day, month or year, you want to achieve your goal.
3. Analyze your performance
Start checking your progress. Once you have a specific goal and a specific target in mind, it is necessary to check your progress from time to time. That way you will know whether you are going in the right direction or whether you need to make changes.
4. Be realistic and optimistic
Start thinking optimistically in a realistic way. It is imperative to be optimistic, because in order to achieve anything, you have to believe in yourself. However, you have to remain realistic. How realistic are your goals and targets given your circumstances? It is better to overestimate the difficulty of the journey ahead than to underestimate the difficulty, because that way you are better prepared.
5. Be patient
Start being patient. Success requires patience. Whatever your target is, you must not forget that achieving your goals will take time. Therefore, it is important to remain patient throughout the journey.
6. Be motivated
Start focusing on your motivation. Willingness is everything, because we often lose motivation when we do not see progress immediately. Achieving goals is similar to a diet—it requires time and patience. No matter how badly you want to, you are not going to lose 20 pounds in one week. Therefore, focus on keeping yourself motivated. Remind yourself why you are doing what you are doing. It is also helpful to look back at your accomplishments so far. Making small steps is better than not making steps at all.
7. Do what you don’t want to do
Start doing things that you do not want to do. This may sound strange, but it is a quite important “skill” to develop. When you do things that you do not want to do, you build up inner strength and confidence—which are necessary skills for success. Quite often in life we will have to do things that we do not want to do. By practicing this skill early on, future tasks will be easier to carry out. Simply start with minor challenges, such as not drinking soda for an entire week.
That’s it! I hope this list has made you think about your current mindset and will help you to become successful in your goals this year. You can do it!