As a success coach, I have a lot of fun working with energetic, motivated individuals who are eager to turn their dreams into reality. They’ve made that important step from talking about success to actually creating it.

In helping these “doers” create the necessary strategies ...As a success coach, I have a lot of fun working with energetic, motivated individuals who are eager to turn their dreams into reality. They’ve made that important step from talking about success to actually creating it.

In helping these “doers” create the necessary strategies to achieve their goals, much of my time is spent talking with them about their expectations of how quickly they can accomplish their goals. In the success coaching process, it’s not always the most enjoyable part of what we do together, but it is a very important one. After all, it’s important to have big goals to work towards, but it’s just as important to have realistic expectations about how and when those dreams can be made real.

Unfortunately, everything today is about speed and getting more done, faster than ever before. Not necessarily a bad goal, but that push for speed spills over into all aspects of our lives. We want fast service and fast results -- no matter what we’re doing.

Everywhere we look in our instant-everything environment we see examples of this: fast-food restaurants, one-hour photo stores, 10-minute oil change shops, do-it-yourself express-lane checkout, etc. We continue to move faster and faster… and we grow incredibly impatient, especially when it comes to people enjoying the fruit of our own efforts. Getting all we ever wanted just isn't enough, unless in can happen instantly.... overnight... right away... right now!

Success, however, rarely (if ever) occurs instantaneously. It comes to you on its own schedule as the result of consistent, persistent action. Rather than stressing yourself out, take things easy… take your time… stop expecting instant results. Do what needs doing and let life take its own course. This way, you can focus on working smarter and more efficiently while enjoying the process of what you’re doing.

Sure, there will be times when you get immediate results and achieve success quickly. Most of the time you’ll need to be patient… Just because you're not getting instant results doesn't mean you won't get any. If you keep working towards your goals, maintaining a sustained, consistent effort, readjusting your plans as necessary along the way, you will create the success you’re looking for.

Consider this analogy: You build a large, thousand-mile-long pipeline, from Alaska to California. You drill for oil and start pumping it into the pipeline… Now, do you have oil coming out of the other end immediately? Of course not! You have to be patient and wait a while. Eventually, the oil will start to flow at the other end, but only if you keep on drilling and filling up the pipe.

It's the same way your own efforts. You have to be patient while your work creates the success you desire. By not forcing the timetable and pushing for immediate results, you actually improve your chances of achieving your goals.

How can get a more realistic expectation of your goals? Easy...

First, make a plan before you mark your calendar. That’s right, sit down and figure out exactly how you’re going to achieve your goal. Figure out all the steps. Determine what resources you already have and which ones you need… Then write it all down, ALONG WITH your estimate of how long it will take to accomplish each individual step! Chances are your time estimates for individual steps will be more accurate than a single estimate for the entire project since you will be looking at smaller action items.

Second, with your firm-but-flexible plan in hand, make a list of potential obstacles, big and small, that could get in your way. Counterintuitive? Too negative? I don’t think so… It’s really an extension of planning that can actually save you time. Thinking about what may slow you down helps prepare you for overcoming those obstacles, thus speeding you back up. Figure out the average time delay an obstacle presents and factor that into your time estimates.

Third, and finally, look around for examples of people who have accomplished the same (or a similar) goal. Ask them how long it took them to achieve success (versus what they thought it would take)? What obstacles did they face? What surprises did they encounter along the way?

Talking with others who have done what you want to do is a great way to estimate how long it might take you. Plus, you get the added benefit of learning from other people’s experience (which, again, could save you a lot of time)!

Three very simple steps, but they can help you focus your mind on the real work necessary to make your dreams a reality.

With a more realistic sense of what can be accomplished, the more you’ll enjoy every step in the process of creating success in your life. And when you do reach your goals, you’ll see that the success you achieve is more than worth the wait.

Author's Bio: 

Jim M. Allen, The Big Life Guy™, a professional success coach and success coaching guide, has been working with clients from around the world since 1999. For more ideas, visit his website, or subscribe to his free ezine, The Big Idea, by going to:

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