This article is taken from a newsletter that I send to members of my running site at http://halftrainingschedule.com. The article is intended for runners, but the principles apply equally to running a home based business. Network marketers, in particular, will find the concepts valuable!
I just found a great article by Barbara J. Walker, Ph. D. in Club Running on Maintaining Motivation. She points out that we all know the importance of setting goals, but few of us know how to set them effectively. The goal-setting process, she says, comprises seven steps:
1. Define What You Want to Accomplish This Year
Set a performance goal for yourself based on what you accomplished last year. Think big, but realistically, and set a performance-oriented goal. In other words, set the goal for your own performance (such as PR) rather for an outcome (such as first place) over which you have no real control. In network marketing, set a goal for a number of contacts or follow-ups made rather than a number of team members added.
2. Know Where You Are Right Now
Check your own records and get feedback from others on your current performance.
3, Be Honest About What You Need to Develop
This is a tough one, but it will pay off later. Recognize where the gaps are in your training and performance so that you can set goals to overcome them.
4. Set Sub-Goals
Break down your season goals into specific concentrated areas, like physical, nutrition and mental skills. In network marketing the areas might be new contacts, presentations, follow-ups and specific training and personal development activities.
5. Create Performance Objectives for Each Sub-Goal Category
This is the most challenging part and is where most people fall short. It is the area that will help most in making daily gains and maintaining motivation. Make the performance objectives as specific and personal as possible. For example, if you would like to get in five to seven servings of vegetables a day, rather than write “Eat more vegetables” you would write “Eat 5-7 servings daily.”
6. Commit Yourself Completely
Be sure that the goals you have set are what you really want to accomplish and are capable of accomplishing over a period of time, otherwise you are setting yourself up for failure before you start! Committing to them means writing them down and sharing them with a trusted friend. Post them where you will see them and create a daily or weekly check-off list.
7. Continually Monitor Your Progress
Be flexible, and change the plan if it’s not working for you. Sometimes you will need to adjust for illness, injuries or making quicker or slower progress than expected. Don’t obsess over temporary setbacks – just adjust your schedule accordingly, but above all don’t give up!
I found this an excellent summary of how to maintain motivation, except that I would add one further tip:
8. Celebrate Your Successes!
Take time out to pat yourself on the back when you achieve your goals. You earned it! And above all, enjoy the process, not just the results.