How To ACTUALLY Achieve Your Goals And Dreams


how to achieve goalsI'm currently in Medellin, Colombia right now and I'm in work-mode full-force.  While here, I've been really cranking up some amazing new stuff for my current internet businesses and have been shooting videos when I can, while continuing to do life coaching with several of my clients.  Life is good, especially when you're enjoying each day of it.

I was having a discussion with a few people lately about goal-setting, and in my opinion, it's something that most people don't take seriously.  The new-age thing to do is to set goals, which I'm really into, but that's really ALL that people do – set goals.  Setting goals all day is great, but what about ACTUALLY achieving them?  What about making them happen and doing whatever it takes to manifest what you really want in your life?

I felt compelled to make a video about this, and share with you my personal strategy to create leverage and pressure on myself to really make a goal happen.  In my opinion, this is process that I outline is an absolute MUST if you're actually serious about achieving your goals and dreams.  If you just want to dabble in life and feel a sense of temporary progress for setting goals and that's it, then this video is definitely NOT for you.  But if you're some that's serious about life and turning their dreams into a reality, then watch this video again and again.

(Click here to watch the video on YouTube)


You're Setting Yourself Up To FAIL

Every year, around January 1st, people come up with their New Years Resolutions.  But how many of them stick?  The actual success rate of people achieving their goals and resolutions is pathetic.  It's something that people think they “should” do and it's often some goal based on the moment, not something they've really put much thought into.

The problem is, most people are setting themselves up to FAIL.  They set goals, but time and time again they come up short.  They think to themselves, “Oh well…” or come up with some sort of story or excuse of why it didn't happen.  The problem is, they are making it ACCEPTABLE to fail.  They are literally training themselves to accept failure, which is what their destiny will be about.  So the next time they set a goal, their mind is ALREADY doubting themselves.  They've already lost.

So Why Don't People Actually Achieve Their Goals And Dreams?

I believe because they haven't made their goal a MUST.  It's still a “should” or something they would like to have happen.  They haven't put themselves in a situation where their back is against the wall and they have no choice but to achieve the goal.  That's why I understand that in order to achieve any goal that I set for myself, I need to use two forces:  Pain and Pleasure.

“Most people just SHOULD all over themselves.” ~ Tony Robbins

The way I use these two forces, is by understanding that every goal that I set for myself needs to have the following:

1) A painful consequence for not achieving the goal.

First and foremost, you need to create leverage on yourself by having a consequence on yourself for NOT achieving your goal.  You can do that in a few ways.  You can do it by simply asking yourself the questions, “What would it cost me in my life if I don't achieve this goal?  What is the consequence?  What will I miss out on?” and by focusing on the answers to those questions, you begin to associate PAIN to not taking action and achieving your goals.

Another way to do it, as I did during my Journey to the WBFF Fitness Competition was to make a public declaration on my blog, told all of my friends and family, paid in advance for the competition, and invested in a coach.  I put myself in a situation where if I didn't follow through and get in the best shape of my life, then the consequence was far too painful.  I would feel embarrassed  I would be letting so many people down, I would have lost all of my credibility and respect from others on my blog, I would have wasted money that I paid for the competition and invested in my coach.  There was simply too much at stake, so I had NO CHOICE but to achieve the goal.  I couldn't back out.  I couldn't change my mind.  I couldn't merely say, “This is too hard” and give up.  I had set myself up to WIN right from the very start.

There's several ways you can have a consequence.  You could simply give your friend $500 and ask them to hold you accountable saying, “I only want you to give me this money back once I've achieved XYZ.”  This way, you have an extra incentive.  The key is to find the right leverage point for you.  Maybe it's not $500, maybe it's $1000, or it may not even be money.  Maybe you'll clean your friends apartment for a week if you don't do XYZ, or whatever – pick something that is so painful that you dont' want to do it, that's the point.

2) A pleasurable reward for achieving the goal.

how to achieve goals and dreamsYou can't just have pain drive you, but you also want to use pleasure.  You need to have a reward for achieving the goal, something to look forward to.  The reason is, if you aren't CELEBRATING and REWARDING yourself for achieving a goal, then you're also sending your brain the wrong message.  You're telling your brain, “I did all this work to achieve this goal and that's it?”  And so your brain isn't going to want to go through the sacrifice, hard work and discipline it takes to achieve the goal if it's only going to receive a tiny amount of pleasure.

What gets rewarded, gets repeated.

When you reward yourself and celebrate any action you take, or especially achieving a goal, you're more likely to condition it as a new habit or pattern of success.  Unfortunately, most people beat themselves up too much and are trying to be perfect, which is the wrong way to go about it.

How can you create pleasure for achieving the goal?  You could simply do it by patting yourself on the back and giving yourself some emotional juice for it.  Or you could reward yourself by giving yourself permission to go on a shopping spree of a couple hundred bucks to buy some new clothes.  Maybe you can book a trip for yourself and take some time off.  Or, maybe you get to go to your favorite restaurant or buy that item you've been wanting to treat yourself with.  It's different for everyone, you have to ask yourself, “What would give me pleasure and what's a reward that would motivate me to take action?”

How Committed Are You?

You might be thinking to yourself, “This sounds way too stressful.  I don't want that kind of pressure on myself to achieve my goals.”  And if you're thinking this way, then I can tell that you're not really committed to doing what it takes.  You're already giving yourself permission to fail.  Pressure is a GOOD THING.  It will help you get things done.

Pressure creates diamonds.

Everyone functions better when there's a deadline.  We perform at a higher level, and raise our standards.  It goes back to school. If you had a project that you had to do, but there's no due date, would you actually get it done?  Most likely not.  But if I told you that this project is due next week, you would FIND A WAY to get it done.  Most students these days pull all nighters and will study day and night to get their school work done – this is one of the most important things you learn in school in my opinion.

As I said in the video, if you aren't willing to do this – by giving yourself a consequence and reward for achieving your goals, then you're most likely not committed.  Why even bother setting the goal in the first place if you aren't going to stick with it and achieve it?

If you set a goal for yourself, achieve it.  Keep your word to yourself.  When you do what you say you'll do, you'll be amazed by how much your self-esteem and confidence skyrockets.

How To ACTUALLY Achieve Your Goals And Dreams
5 (100%) 4 votes
  • Keith

    Definitely like the school analogy you used. That is a great comparison! I completely agree with you and I think a major problem with the majority of people is that they set goals for just New Years. Why wait until the beginning of the year to set your goals? People shouldn’t wait until a set date before they decide to set goals. Writing goals down is major also because that gives people a constant reminder of their goals. I’m new to the blog but definitely like what you have going on here.

    • Thanks for stopping by Keith! Most people just aren’t serious about their goals on New Years… I personally set yearly goals, and then 3-month, and 1-month goals. I enjoy having a purpose and something to move towards.

  • It’s true – I dedicate some time to dream, set goals, and reevaluate where I’m at compared to where I wanted to be.

    But, as I stated on another comment I make sure to review my daily actions in the morning, and then again before I go to bed. This helps me stay on track and actually helps me accomplish my goals.

    I’m aiming to earn $10k a month from my freelance writing with an additional $2500 a month from outsourcing my overflow. I’m about 60% of the way there, and if my plan pans out then I’ll hit it by March.

    Man, your blog is awesome. Wish I found it months ago.

  • Sean PI Stewart

    Awesome post awesome sharing Awesome inspiration for all of us

  • Nathan Hawken

    Hey Stefan,
    Good points on that video man. I’m starting to think now about what’ll hurt the most for me if I don’t complete my goals.
    Being very new to setting goals for myself I’ve noticed that some of my smaller daily goals fall slightly short and it makes me feel pretty average even though I smash through the rest.
    One question though. When I posted to you last I mentioned I am about to start a new job in a commission only paid sales position (and thanks for your reply by the way) and I have 2 very slow weeks left in my current job where most of my work has been handed over to the people taking over from me. The major goals I have set for myself this year mainly revolve around making more income, buying a car, saving money and financial planning for the future. These can only start when I begin making sales a plenty in the new job.
    My question is what can I do in this 2 weeks to stay motivated or what goals can I set to push me to start off my new job strong?

  • Excellent points Stefan! I often start something and don’t finish and I hate when I do that. Watching the video, I was thinking of using pros and cons list, but Pleasure and Pain is so much more powerful! And the idea of giving a friend an amount of money that you’ll lose if you don’t finish your goal was really smart!

  • Cameron Chandoke

    Interesting article. I have accomplished goals in the past
    that were absolutely a stretch to achieve, required huge changes in my
    mindset and habits, and which I achieved
    successfully. So I was obviously truly committed in those instances. And, I would NOT have chosen to give myself a painful consequence for failing to achieve any of them. So perhaps commitment is not directly correlated to our level of willingness to create extra
    emotional leverage?? At the same time, Stefan seems to be stretching
    himself more and achieving alot more than me. Overall I’m not sold on this idea yet but considering it. Thanks for the article!