How to Eat an Elephant
Tackling an insurmountable task or large and lofty goal may seem impossible at first, but with determination and some successful planning, it can be done.
Just like eating an elephant, you reach a moonshot goal piece by piece. This means setting small milestones and achievable goals that you can begin working on immediately. Rather than trying to buy a new house, you set a goal for saving 10 percent of a down payment by the end of this year. Instead of trying to expand into the entire US, you add two new locations in your home state by next year, etc.
Setting realistic and immediate goals helps build a foundation for success that you can then build upon to reach your larger aim. It also helps give you a sense of accomplishment and moves you further toward your end result.
A great quote to keep in mind as you attempt to achieve your moonshots is from the Ancient Greek orator Isocrates: “It is more important to know where you are going than to get there quickly. Do not mistake activity for achievement.” While you may look around you and see that your competitors have reached goals that you want to achieve, do not let it sway your determination.
Maybe your college classmate got senior VP status, your high school friend bought a new home, your old coworker’s small business just hit Fortune 500. Though it can be challenging at times, try not to compare your journey to others. Many companies and individuals alike take shortcuts to reach quick success and pave their way with pot holes that soon collapse their enterprise in 5 to 10 years time. If you stay focused on your goal and are more committed to doing it right, your success will last far longer.
It is also important to stay open for new ideas and possibilities. As you begin to reach your milestones and build a path to your ultimate goal, you never know when opportunity may come knocking. It may not have been in the form you originally intended, but being open to new ideas and new connections could give your goal a major boost in the right direction.
If you ever feel discouraged, all you have to do is search for examples of influence makers who faced setbacks. Want a hint? It is all of them. Everyone who has done something great to impact the world has faced a setback at one time or another. Do not give up on your moonshots. If Edison, Tesla, Ford, Newton, Da Vinci had given up when they faced setbacks on their goals, imagine how different the world would be, and not for the better. So start now, stay focused, and keep an open mind.