Everyone want to succeed. No one wants the failures.
Still… we fail.
Let’s pay a close attention to the ingredients of a Successs-story. I found it common in most of them. In short, it is a life cycle of following steps, in which step 3 and 4 keep on repeating till you achieve your goal.
Analysis–>Define–>Plan–>Review & Act –>Success.
Let me elaborate it…!
First thing is Clarity in Thoughts. Define it – What counts in a “Success” for you. And to define it clearly, you may need to do a little analysis.
Unless you are very clear on what do you want to achieve, and have clear-cut definitions of objectives to be achieved, you are not doing it right way. Your goal to be achieved must be broken down to parameters that are quantifiable (that means, it should be measurable in terms of how much you have achieved), objective (and not subjective), and practically feasible.
This means, jot-down all the points in a single sheet of paper that makes sense for your definition of “Success”. Categorize and Sub-categorize, if needed to include all factors, and then follow the elimination process to filter what is not directly linked to your goal, and is optional. Be very clear that you should not include anything that comes in the category of “also” or “good to have” kind of things because these are mostly the deviation factors. This does not mean to overrule the bare necessities.
Remember, success should not be defined by “What you want”, rather it should be defined by “What is needed?”. An example, to quote here appropriately would be NASA’s anti-Gravity pen research for space mission. I am not going in to the history or the thing whether it is a fact or fiction, but it is the moral of the story that tells us to focus on the problem in hand in smart way. The story goes like this…
During the height of the space race in the 1960s, legend has it, NASA scientists realized that pens could not function in space. They needed to figure out another way for the astronauts to write things down. So they spent years and millions of taxpayer dollars to develop a pen that could put ink to paper without gravity. But their crafty Soviet counterparts, so the story goes, simply handed their cosmonauts pencils.
So.. it should not be “What you want”, for example “A Pen that can write in abnormal, anti-gravity situations”. It should be more focused on “What is needed?”, i.e. “An object that can make Astronauts’ life easier and which is more appropriate to help an astronaut write something in outer space.”
Once you have defined your term and requirements of “Success” for you, you must ensure that it is feasible and “Time bound“. Every objective, or sub-category of your goal must have an associated time limit to achieve it. Open ended and without any time boundaries gives you an escape-route and is most likely to make you fall in traps of failures.
Once you are done with definition of your success, next comes in the Planning part.
Start with the definition of your goal to be achieved objective by objective.
Prioritize them on the basis of their need or importance if there are multiple objectives. This sequence or priority order makes it easier for you to decide what needs your attention the most at a particular moment of your journey to Success.
For each objective in your definition, list down all the dependencies, that you need to cover, in order to achieve that objective.
Prepare a time bound plan for every objective and sub-objective to be met in order to achieve your final goal of Success. For tricky or more important objectives, it is also good to have alternative plans for risk-mitigation. It is good to have it but if you think it is not necessary, you may avoid it as of now.
Your plan should clearly mention the intermediate milestones at each phase (or level) that help you check the progress at different points in your journey, and take corrective actions, if required.
Now Review your progress at regular intervals, and make necessary modifications in your plan, if necessary so that it aligned to help you reach your goal from current situation and progress level. This constant monitoring is a very important and critical thing to ensure that you are moving ahead in correct direction and that you have not lost your focus from the defined Success. Eliminate all those factors, people, tasks, hobbies, etc. which are distracting you or deviating you from your success-path, or limit their influence in your life so that you are in control of these things instead of these controlling your fate.
It may be a case that you feel de-motivated, lost, and willing to quit at hard times of failures. But remember, failure is just a signal and giving you a chance to re-think and re-attempt with a new plan if needed. Failure is not really a failure unless you stop moving further from this point. No big success has come an easy way in History of mankind.
To keep yourself motivated, learn to appreciate and treat yourself even for small achievements you make in the journey to your final goal. You don’t necessarily need an external factor to keep you motivated. At hard times or failures, be your own friend. Don’t play a blame-game, which is all very negative and un-productive. Instead, try to find out the root cause of the problem, and devise a plan to fix the issue to move further.
Remember! It is just a mindset and a practice that makes you a Success-story or a Failure.