Pat Riley once said there are only two options regarding commitment: you’re either in or you’re out. Pat knows a lot about commitment and the game of basketball. His career spells big goals. He’s no stranger to the fact that big goals require commitment and focus. And might I add patience and effort. Pursuing and staying the course of big goals also requires sacrifice. There are things you must be willing to give up pursuing big goals. Here’s the good news, if you’re truly committed, these things are easy to avoid. Setting goals that excite you is tremendously helpful. So, start there but beware of these 15 things that can be great distractions if your commitment is lacking.
1. Worrying about things you can’t control. Ask yourself what you’re accomplishing by worrying about things outside of your control. I know it’s easier said than done. Truth is, you’ll find that worrying never solved anything.
2. Worrying about the opinions of others. Here’s the deal. People think about you less than you imagine. No, really. When you’re trying to accomplish something challenging, you just don’t have time to worry about what others think.
3. Wasting time in general. Big goals and small goals, for that matter, require time. You don’t have time to waste on trivial things. Keep a record of how you spend your time for one day. You might be surprised at how you’re spending your time. You might not be spending your time the way you think you are!
4. Surfing the internet. Oh my. This is a huge timewaster. The time seems to fly by while you’re watching a parakeet play the organ.
5. TV. I love my shows! I can admit that this is a hard one for me…but truth be told, many highly successful people don’t even own a TV.
6. Playing on your smartphone. Spend one day without looking at your smartphone unless someone calls you. Maybe start with one hour. What do you notice?
7. Interacting with the noise of the world. Ain’t nobody got time for that…This goes back to worrying about things you can’t control and wasting time. Listen, you can argue about Donald Trump or Joe Biden all you like, but you’re not going to change anyone’s mind, and no one is going to change yours. Keep the majority of your attention on the things that matter in your life, like your relationships, your health, your finances, and your big goals.
8. Doing the easy thing. The easy thing is rarely the effective thing. I’ll say that again, the easy thing is rarely the effective thing. When you’re hunting a big goal, doing the effective thing is key.
9. Worrying about failure. You’re guaranteed to fail in the short term. Accept it, and don’t worry about it. Just learn, adjust your approach, and continue to lean forward.
10. The opinions of those you wouldn’t switch places with. Now that’ll preach!! But think about it, if you want to be worth a billion dollars, it makes sense to listen to the ideas of other billionaires. That probably doesn’t include critics on your timeline, Uncle Jim, your best friend from high school, or your neighbor, Billy.
11. Trying to be liked by everyone. It didn’t work when you were in high school, and it’s not going to work now. It’s never going to happen just wasted energy and effort; you can’t please most. You could be the most perfect pianist in the world, but some people hate the piano. It is what it is.
12. Procrastination. There’s no time to wait. Putting things off suggests that there’s another issue lurking beneath the surface. Seek coaching or counseling to help you to Identify and rectify it.
13. Allowing your emotional mind to guide you rather than your wise mind. We tend to make choices that serve to decrease our discomfort. Also, we often make decisions in the heat of the moment. Use your knowledge and experience to make choices that support you and your goals instead.
14. Repeating mistakes. Repeating mistakes is a waste of time. It’s like trying to open a locked door over and over again.
15. Seeking pleasure versus seeking progress. Seeking pleasure doesn’t lead to a good place in the long term. Pleasure-seeking tends to make you overweight, lazy, stressed, and wandering.
Achieving big goals isn’t just about what you do. It’s also about what you’re willing to give up. There will be things you simply don’t have time for if you want to reach higher levels of success.