incomplete bridge

One of my biggest struggles is finishing something that I started.

I would always be excited and have all this energy in the beginning, but like a child with a new toy, the excitement fades away and the goal doesn’t seem worth doing anymore so I would just give it up and move on to the next exciting thing.

Although there is nothing wrong with having a lot of ideas, I wasn’t accomplishing the things I wanted to achieve by starting so many new projects and goals. I was actually diluting my efforts and wasting  my time because I would never reach my desired outcome.

I have now learned a great way to stick to my goals. It came to me after I heard this classic story:

It’s the middle ages and there were 3 stone masons hard at work when a visitor stopped and asks each of them “What are you doing?”

The first stone mason said in a harsh voice, “Can’t you see? I’m carrying rocks!”

The second stone mason replied in a more resigned voice, “I’m building a wall.”

The last stone mason responded with enthusiasm, “I am building a beautiful cathedral that will glorify God for centuries to come.”

Who do you think felt the most fulfilled? Who would you bet on to achieve their goal?

Now every time I set or evaluate a goal, I ask myself the question “What are you doing?” and I listen to my answer. I have discovered personally that when I see the bigger purpose behind my goals, it is much easier to do what it takes to achieve it even if I don’t feel like doing it. If the goal doesn’t have a bigger purpose, then it is not worth doing because I’ve come to learn that time is my most precious resource.

So … what are you doing?

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Robert Chen

Robert Chen is the founder of Embrace Possibility and author of The Dreams to Reality Fieldbook. He helps people who feel stuck move forward by guiding them to see other possibilities for their lives. He specializes in working with high performers get to the next level. If you're going through a tough time right now, check out Robert's article on How to Feel Better Right Away and if you're having trouble getting what you want out of life, check out How to Always Achieve Your Goals.

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12 Responses to How to Stick to Your Goals Even If You Never Could

  1. Qualities of Successful People - Part 1•Embrace Possibility Blog says:

    […] beliefs lead to vague outcomes. It is this sense of direction that gives them the staying power to stick to their goals and achieve their […]

  2. 30 Qualities of Highly Successful People • Embrace Possibility Blog says:

    […] beliefs lead to vague outcomes. It is this sense of direction that gives them the staying power to stick to their goals and achieve their […]

  3. gabe says:

    i have a goal of becomeing a marine but i need to work towerds it physicly and the biggest issue is mently i choose job to job to job but i want to stick with a marine but i dont want to change my mind because i want to be a marine more than anything so the biggest issue is how do i stick with it. please email me back a response

  4. […] your goal is aligned with your purpose and passion. When your goal is relevant it becomes easier to stick to your goals. An effective method I learned from Tony Robbins is to first understand WHY you want to achieve […]

  5. […] beliefs lead to vague outcomes. It is this sense of direction that gives them the staying power to stick to their goals and achieve their […]

  6. […] beliefs lead to vague outcomes. It is this sense of direction that gives them the staying power to stick to their goals and achieve their […]

  7. […] beliefs lead to vague outcomes. It is this sense of direction that gives them the staying power to stick to their goals and achieve their […]

  8. Kane Jay Vaughn says:

    I’m trying to set a goal to stay on track. Im afraid when it comes down to the biggest challenges I still struggle trying to Think that I have to eventually going to live my life as an adult and take on those responcibilities

    • Robert Chen says:

      Thanks for sharing Kane. One tip I found helpful is to focus on taking the next step – forget about the enormity of the whole goal. Focus on the very next thing you can comfortably do towards your goal.

  9. […] beliefs lead to vague outcomes. It is this sense of direction that gives them the staying power to stick to their goals and achieve their […]

  10. […] beliefs lead to vague outcomes. It is this sense of direction that gives them the staying power to stick to their goals and achieve their […]

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