The Difference Between Achieving Your Goals and Staying Exactly Where You Are

Have you ever set a big goal for yourself only to lose sight of it quickly?

You planned on hiking to some distant land of happiness and abundance, but didn’t know where to start? Or maybe you started strong, but lost momentum along the way?

Over time, your goal became increasingly unattainable until, seeing no end in sight, you struck it from your list and carried on with your life.

It’s happened to all of us, and it’s not hard to understand why.

Even with your goal in sight, one glance at the forests, rivers, hills, valleys, and other obstacles on the path makes the hike seem insurmountable.

You start thinking maybe it’s not worth the trouble. You wonder if all that happiness and abundance is necessary.

Maybe that distant land is just like this one.

Maybe it’s safer and easier to stay put.

So you distract yourself with smaller, easier achievements; you tackle clear, surmountable tasks, like email. You fill your day by responding to others’ requests, others’ problems, others’ needs...

...while your goal sits far, far away.

But what if, between you and this distant land of happiness and abundance, instead of unknowns, someone laid brightly colored stepping stones? What if every mile had planted a light post and a table with a cocktail and a bag of peanut M&Ms?


The trek wouldn’t be any easier. You’d still have to climb the hills and swim the rivers. But you’d know exactly how to start, would have no question about how to continue, and might even find it fun to celebrate at each milestone along the way.

The difference between achieving your goals and staying exactly where you are has little to do with how big or far off your goals are. Rather, it has everything to do with how clear of a path you can define to that goal.

Unfortunately, no one will light the path for you.

You’ll have to break your goal into milestones. You’ll have to outline a clear set of tasks to get from one milestone to the next. And you’ll have to take the first step.

Before you take that step, take the time to make the path to your goals as clear as possible, lest another clearer path to a lesser goal obstruct your view.

About the Author


Michael Mehlberg


I help high-achieving entrepreneurs organize their brain and schedule so they can organize their life and business.

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