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Begin with the end in mind

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Author: Will Mbanga, Posted: Saturday, 23rd February 2019, 09:00

Too often, we know what’s good for us or the right decision to make, but struggle to follow through because it’s hard or requires some kind of commitment – time, effort, finance, etc. Anything worth doing in life is hard and takes commitment, but when you look back on an achievement, it is always worth the input.

For 10 years now, The Local Answer team have been building, developing and improving their business in both print and digital media, to meet the needs of local people and businesses. This required a vision of what that would look like (which is allowed to change over time), commitment and daily habits/
work toward meeting deadlines and running a business operation. Congratulations on 10 years and here’s to many more!

Two months into 2019, many of us will be elbow deep in our own New Year’s resolutions and will have either started to see results and get some reward, or are beating ourselves up because of opportunities lost. Either way, life continues and it is only on looking back to reflect that we realise just how amazing, strong, committed and hard working we have been when we achieve something significant or learn through reflection, the lessons from mistakes made.

Dreams and goals are an important part of personal growth

While it is important to “live in the moment”, to be present and experience your life fully, having dreams, setting goals, reaching milestones, making mistakes and learning lessons are all an important part of the personal growth process.

Sometimes, we all need a little help to achieve our potential or overcome our challenges – the focus here is not so much on who or what, but rather how to reach your ‘Everest’. In his book ‘The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People’, the late Dr. Steven Covey wrote: “Habit no. 2 – Begin with the end in mind, meaning that when you set out to achieve something, picture what it will look like when it is completed and then work backwards to the start.”

Take any one of your New Year’s resolutions – weight loss, sleeping better, exercising more – and think about what that would look like to you. If it was to enrol in further education, what will your new skills and knowledge empower you to do? If it was to build a business, improve a relationship, go on an adventure or some other big goal, you have to believe first, and then commit.

Create a mental picture, then put in the work

You see, the power of habit no. 2 lies in the fact that you first create a mental picture of your success – how you will look or feel, what you will achieve or create, how you will have helped people or created something. Then, you put in the work; effort, finance, time or other resources needed to bring this to life by taking action.

Your double commitment to achieving whatever it is you’ve set out – first in your mind by seeing it, then in the physical realm by acting on it – is what will enable you to achieve your dreams or intentions, realise your goals and mount your ‘Everest’. It’s not too late to start – even if you haven’t managed to stick to your resolution or change your habits to help achieve that goal yet, there is no time like the present to begin. And remember, your finish line is unique to you – don’t worry about everyone else’s.

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