One of the problems many people have is that they have a long-term goal, which they should, but they don’t have any short-term goals that they move toward. What they want is to get to the top, and they focus on that, rather than focusing in on simply taking their lives or careers up a notch.
When you shoot for it all at once, chances are you will not be able to make it. The person who does is extremely rare. Instead, most people shoot for it all and fail, then get discouraged and quit. Hear this: Don’t have the mindset of going for it all at once!
Here is the reality for most of us: We get to the top one notch at a time. The road to CEO starts at the mailroom, and then goes through the position of salesperson, then sales manager, then V.P. Sales, then president of a division, then CEO. These are all notches that we go through. Every once in a while you may be able to skip a notch, but rarely. The men and women I have worked with who have achieved so much usually have a lot of notches they passed through to get there.
So while our ultimate goal may be to be the CEO, we need to plan and work on getting to the notch above us. What will it take to get to the next level? When you find that out, do what it takes to get there and do it better than anyone else!
One of the benefits of going one notch at a time is that your confidence builds in ways that it never would if you went for the gold and failed repeatedly. Then at every level you have the confidence that you will be able to move to the next level.
Take a long-term view but work for the short-term. Yes, keep your eye on where you ultimately want to be, but set many notches between where you are and where you want to go. Then over time, take it up a notch at a time.
Make sure that your notches are far enough to be a challenge, but short enough to be a possibility. This is a balance that only you can answer for yourself. You want to stretch but make sure it is something you can really achieve! This will maximize your time and your gains!
Take a look where you want to go. Then create the notches you have to go through. Then develop a plan for getting to the next notch. Now go for it!