The story that comes to mind is that of Morolake Akinosun, who is an American athlete of Nigerian descent. At age 17 in 2011, Morolake was in her senior year in Waubonsie Valley High School in Illinois. While watching the televised World Championships for track and field, she got inspired to tweet these words; “In 2016, I will be 22, graduated from a school I haven’t chosen yet and going to the Olympics”. Fast forward to exactly 5 years later, she got a pop-up on the timehop app reminding her of the tweet she had posted in 2011. She reflected on her current reality and in shock tweeted again; “It’s 2016, I graduate from the University of Texas in December. I’m going to the Olympics next week!” Isn’t it intriguing to know that exactly 5 years after Morolake said she would be at the Olympics, she made it? More interestingly, Morolake surpassed her goal. Along with other members of her team, she won the gold medal for the 400-meter relay at that 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. A great feat for the 22-year old athlete.
As you can see from the story above, it is clear that the choices we make on a daily basis is what contributes to the eventual outcomes of our life. Your life is a combination of habits, decisions and lifestyle choices which form your character. Who you are and where you are on your journey today, is the product of your actions or inactions.
Do you ever wonder why some people seem to shine in any sphere in which they choose to exert themselves, and others cannot manage even a glimmer despite obvious talent?
Research shows that it’s the way they think about their ability that really counts. Most of those who have achieved greatness, have worked extremely hard to get there. Many were told that they would never amount to anything. But they believed otherwise and worked hard to do so.
Similarly, Brian Tracy did say; “a clear vision, backed by definite plans, gives you a tremendous feeling of confidence and personal power.” This is what he referred to as the gift of self-confidence. In other words; A vision is not just a picture of what could be; it is an appeal to our better selves, a call to become something more. Thus, we are not limited by our abilities but by our vision. — Rosabeth Moss Kanter
So, with everyone thinking of ways to achieve so much this year, I thought to share 3 tips to help you dominate 2021:
- Set Goals in line with your Passion
What is that Big Picture that captures the essence of your life? Be clear about it. Dreams don’t work themselves, we make dreams work. Having identified the big picture, go further by drilling down to at least 3 things you need to achieve in order to create that big picture.
Similarly, SMART is an acronym for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time-bound. A goal that is Specific must answer the questions: Who is involved in this goal? What do I want to accomplish? Where is this goal to be achieved? When do I want to achieve it? And why do I want to achieve this goal? A goal is Measurable if it has clear criteria for measuring progress while it is Achievable when it is not impossible to attain. Taking into consideration your present realities, Goals must also be Realistic and time-bound – there must be a start and finish date.
You see my friend, dreams without SMART goals are just wishes and if wishes were horses, beggars will ride.
- Have a Positive Mindset
Guarding your heart and understanding the realities within your context is crucial in maintaining a positive mindset. This is because no matter your clearly set goals, if you have a wrong mindset you can’t get things done.
American Televangelist, Joel Osteen plainly said that “You cannot expect to live a positive life if you hang with negative people.” You need to make a conscious effort to protect what comes into your mind. While things may look unpleasant, you need to distance yourself from people who always see the glass as half-empty instead of half-full. If you must, stay away from people who feed your fears and worries.
Winston Churchill once said, “Don’t waste a good crisis.” We should train ourselves to see the purpose of the process. In the midst of a difficult situation, be deliberate about seeking opportunities to grow and learn.
So, it’s not enough to avoid negative influences; make a deliberate effort to ensure you’re positive in your outlook. To do this, find books, movies and documentaries with positive messages. This is critical as your mind is your greatest asset. Everything we see around us is a product of someone’s mind. So, to make the best of this year – Guard your Mind.
- Commit to Improving Yourself
I have said on numerous occasions, a 10KVA generator, no matter how well-intentioned cannot power a 10-storey residential building. You’ll need much more generating capacity to sufficiently power that kind of building. In the same way, you cannot successfully build a skyscraper on a bungalow foundation, any such attempt is destined to fail. This is also true about life, you might have SMART goals, inspiring vision, a powerful and well-articulated mission yet not go as far as you should in achieving them; if you don’t have the required physical, mental and social capacity to execute them. The importance of growing capacity and improving yourself cannot be overemphasized.
You see friend, some variables critical to the execution of your ambitious goals would be beyond your control. Sometimes, things don’t go as smoothly as we planned and there could be the temptation to be discouraged and give up on your dream. It’s at those times you’ll need to persevere. You need to develop the capacity to stick to the big picture, for in the process of improving yourself consistently therein lies the gateway to your success.
So, be the Master of your Life, Build the Dream and Dominate this Year.
Remember You Have Only One Life to Live, MAKE IT COUNT.