Let no one call you a lazy Nigerian youth: here are 17 ways of sticking to your goal
I am sure the label “Lazy Nigerian youth” did not go down well with you as with many other hard working young Nigerians. However, sticking to a goal as you may have found out by now is not easy at all.
Last week I shared how typically hard the first day or time working at a goal can be by sharing my own experience. The idea was to encourage you not to give up.
So, how did your second week or second attempt working at your goal go? It could have been easier than the first or better (mine was). Or it might have looked like no progress was made or worse you may have suffered a setback.
Again, as I pointed in the previous post all these outcomes are fine, simply because you went out and worked at your goal.
Eventually, with time and persistence you will begin to see results. That been said the road to success will most likely be long and the temptation to quit will arise over and over again.
So, how to keep at it? How not to give in and throw in the towel and be tagged a lazy Nigerian youth?
Here is a list of 17 ways to keep you going. I am sure that by adapting some of these you will find yourself pressing on and meeting your present goal and subsequent ones. Ready? Let’s begin.
I will not quit
Make that your new motto: I will not quit. Tell yourself that before you begin in fact make a video recording of yourself saying it. Tell yourself: I am about to start so, so and so.
I will not quit when I feel like giving up. I will not quit when I am tired. I will not quit when the going gets really rough. I will not quit when my friends or family tell me to.
I will most definitely not quit and be called a lazy Nigerian youth … and so on. Bring out the video and watch it during your low moments and be re-energized.
Watch or listen to an against all odd movie or music
A good film showing people overcoming adversity can work wonders when you feel like throwing in the towel. Music too has the same effect one of my favourite tracks to listen to is I’m a survivor by Destiny’s child.
You can listen to it here. Find what pushes you and use it to either get you going or help you shake of discouragement when you are feeling down.
Get a Mentor
“Mentorship is a relationship in which a more experienced or more knowledgeable person helps to guide a less experienced or less knowledgeable person. The mentor may be older or younger than the person being mentored, but he or she must have a certain area of expertise.” //en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mentorship
All you may need to help you keep going is someone who has walked the road you are currently walking. Apart from teaching you, his/ her job will also be to encourage you when the going gets tough and hold you accountable by tracking your progress.
Go at it with someone or a group of people
Depending on the nature of your goal it may make a lot of sense to find others who are interested in achieving that same goal and form a support group.
Remind yourself why you are doing this in the first place
Make a list of why it is very important for you to achieve your goal. For example: I need a job to raise money for my sick mother’s medical bills. I need to raise money for next semester’s school fees. I don’t want my younger brother to have to drop out of school etc. You can print it out and put it up where it will serve as a constant reminder why you are pursuing this goal. The right reasons will keep you going and working at your goal.
Number your progress
There are several ways this method can be approached. You can count how many times you worked on your goal. For example: “This is my 600th day without smoking.” “This is the 10th time I sat down to practice mathematics.” You may want to mark this number in a diary daily. As the number gets large you will feel like keeping it going.
Celebrate mile stones in your goal.
Recall that it is important to break your goals into smaller sub- goals in other to achieve them. When you have hit a sub goal reward yourself.
Go watch a movie or go to a fast food joint or do anything you know you will enjoy that (doesn’t mess with your goal or turn you into a lazy Nigerian youth. You’ve been warned!)
An example could go something like this: “As soon as I have finished this…I will go and …”
Look back and see how far you’ve come
Imagine yourself walking across a road and getting half way suddenly you say you are too tired to continue and you want to turn back. It doesn’t make sense does it? Since you have made that much progress why not just ku ku ma see it through?
Let how far you’ve come motivate you to see it to the end.
Besides,why throw away all that hard work, time and possibly money that you have already invested?
Feeling burnt out? Take a break
At times you may attack your goal with so much energy that before you are even half ways there fatigue sets in. And with comes discouragement.
Resting properly and creating time to relax can be just what you need to re-energise yourself. You can then resume working on your goal with fresh mind, clear head and a revitalised body.
Work on it every day even if it is just a little
As someone who enjoys writing, there are days when I can only write just one line. But that is ok. So long that I consistently put a line down regularly I will eventually finish whatever I am writing.
It’s like the tap water that is dripping in a bucket. The bucket does eventually fill up even it takes hours or days.
So work on your goal everyday even if it is just a little. Little progress is better than no progress at all.
Tell yourself setbacks will happen
Except you’re not human you will experience setbacks or even outright failures as you work towards your goal. Again that is fine you are human after all. Most times while going after the things we want we forget about this. So the minute we fail we are frustrated and want to quit. Knowing this from the very beginning makes it easier to stand up and dust yourself and keep going.
It will take time
Another very powerful element of your journey towards your goal: Time. Most humans are very impatient. But you Nigerian youths in particular your lack of patience is legendary. I know because I was once a youth.
Everything worth working for usually takes time, a lot of it. Now is the time to imbibe the virtue of patience.
Learn to be patient you will get to where you are going to eventually and you won’t be too late. Again having this knowledge at the back of your mind will keep you strong and steady on your course.
Re-access your goal if it’s too hard and cut it down if you need to
At times you may have beaten off more than you can chew. At such times you need to be brave enough to tell yourself the truth and cut down.
For example say you have set yourself a target of 1000 press ups every day but in reality you can only manage 200.
After the first two days of 1000 chances are you will quit because your body can’t take it even if your spirit can.
So pace yourself. Even if others around you are doing 1000 you are not them. All that matters is you are progressing the speed is not important what is important is that you get there eventually.
If you are going to give up on your goal most times it is usually because the voice in your head is encouraging you to quit.
You need to take charge of your inner self and not allow it to dictate to you.
Replace negative thoughts with positive thoughts of success immediately as soon as they arise. Once you gain control of it you will surely be succeeding most of the time.
Create an inspiration board
I am sure you know Arnold schwarzenegger winner of Mr. Universe and Mr. Olympia multiple times and a great actor.
Well, when he was just starting his journey to become the world’s greatest body builder he filled his bedroom with posters of other body builders he wanted to be like. So these posters where the first things he saw when he woke up and the last thing he saw before going to bed.
These posters of the then famous body builders where his inspiration board. So why not consider creating one for yourself to remind you of your goal and to spur you on?
Research the stories of the heroes you will like to be like
A great number of very successful people have powerfully stories about how they never gave up and how that persistence have seen them rise to the pinnacle of their dreams. Go online and research their biography. Let them inspire you.
Make your goal the first thing you do every day
This is a good idea to implement if you can. Let your goal be the first thing you tackle every day before you do anything else. It’s an easy way to turn it into a habit and it will also help ensure that you work on it every day without fail.
Have a trigger reminder
If you need a constant reminder to work on your goal or even some encouragement to start on it daily, you can set up a trigger reminder. The best way to explain this will be for me to give an example. If you need to say practice maths every day, you can have your text book out where you can unfailing see it. You may even leave it open with an invitation note from yourself to come and solve at least one sum. The idea is for you to see something that reminds or encourages you to get started.
And that’s the list hopefully you will find at least one if not multiple ideas on it to help you stay on course and meet your goal. I would love to hear from you. What methods do you use to help you stay on course? Do comment so others can learn.