I love dreaming! It's one of my favorite things to just explore the possibilities! But can I tell you what I love even more than dreaming? Seeing those dreams become a reality. It takes hard work, dedication, and passion to make your goals a reality! In addition, there are 4 tools that help me achieve my goals on a daily basis.
Pen and Paper
If you want to take action on your goals, research shows that you should write them down! In fact, research shows that when you explore your goals, write them down, commit your goals to action, share the goals with a friend, and send a weekly progress report to a friend, it's likely that 76% of your goals will be completed (source). Isn't that amazing?!
It also looks like there's a link between writing and the creative part of the brain. Pam A Mueller, a Princeton University, and Daniel M Oppenheimer wrote an article on three studies that compared keyboard note taking and the good, 'ol fashioned pen-and-paper note taking!
They found that taking notes on the keyboard could actually limit the brain's ability to store information in a long-term way. Anyone else see the value in remembering your goals throughout the year? They also found that there is a link between longhand and creativity! Here's an excerpt from the abstract!
"The present research suggests that even when laptops are used solely to take notes, they may still be impairing learning because their use results in shallower processing. In three studies, we found that students who took notes on laptops performed worse on conceptual questions than students who took notes longhand. We show that whereas taking more notes can be beneficial, laptop note takers’ tendency to transcribe lectures verbatim rather than processing information and reframing it in their own words is detrimental to learning."
Turning your dreams into actionable goals is one of the secrets behind making things happen. When you simplify a dream into specific goals, you can take action! This means that you're not wondering where all of the time went at the end of the month/year!
Let's look at one of my examples
THE DREAM: I dream of encouraging other business owners to build booming businesses and live their lives on purpose! I want to lead a generation of women who want to take action to do the things that are important.
BREAK IT DOWN: I broke this dream down into several parts. Examples include writing encouraging posts on Instagram, putting myself in front of the video camera, and pouring out with gobs and gobs of free resources!
1 SPECIFIC AND ACTIONABLE GOAL: Each week I want to host a live broadcast on Periscope! The conversations will be geared toward women who desire to run their businesses with heart and live their lives intentionally! These conversations will bring freedom and encourage them to take steps toward the things that actually matter!
This process may seem glaringly simple or overly complicated, but this is how I take actions on my dreams in the day-to-day! This process becomes easier and easier! I love using Lara Casey's Powersheets to help me with my goal setting each year. The newly released 1 year notebook that I use is sold out for the year but you can still buy the 6 month set!
I love a great planner! I have experimented with several different planners and my favorite is still the Simplified Planner by Emily Ley! I actually purchased the Dapper Desk planner for Isaac this Christmas and he loves it!
I don't think that you have to use a planner to stay on top of your to do list! Apps work just great for some people! Just find what works for you. I like to schedule vacations, trips, birthdays, and weekends off before I start filling up my year with work. This helps me make sure that I don't end up with a year that is all work and no play. Because moments like this don't happen if I make a choice to work 24/7.
Sleep Cycle App
This app is my favorite! I am goal-oriented which sometimes results in sacrificing sleep for projects (not good). The Sleep Cycle App helps me to remember that the goal is actually 8 hours of sleep every night! Go download it here!
You need 8 hours of sleep to perform at peak performance.
Did you know that you needed that much sleep? Did you know that there is new research that proves that each and every one of us needs 8 hours of sleep to function the way we were designed to funciton?!
There was this amazing article by Charles Czesler about sleep. He is a professor at Harvard Medical School who compares lack of sleep to being drunk. Here's an excerpt from the article (source):
"We now know that 24 hours without sleep or a week of sleeping four or five hours a night induces an impairment equivalent to a blood alcohol level of .1%. We would never say, 'This person is a great worker! He’s drunk all the time!' yet we continue to celebrate people who sacrifice sleep."
Or what about the publication from NCBI that explains impairment of attention after one single night of sleep deprivation (source)? The problem is that we start to think that we can function on less sleep after we have been sleep deprived for a long time.
I gave up on sleep after Daniel was born and I could tell a difference in the way that I was processing information. There was one time where I looked at Isaac during a wedding and said, "What's that thing that crawls up other things?" And it's only because we are married that he was able to guess that I was looking for vine. Friends, I was so sleep deprived that vocabulary was completely lost!
After hearing and reading about sleep and what actually happens to your brain while sleeping, I decided to change my ways. Ideas are returning, my vocabulary is returning, and I am remember my life better! If you want your business to have success, the best way that you can prepare for growth is to sleep!