Last week we talked about clarifying your goals. If you followed along with the exercise I mentioned, you should have identified that one goal that if it came true, you would undeniably achieve the version of your best self you envision 10 years from now. This week we are going to talk about creating a roadmap to achieve that goal. The process I am going to take you through in this post I learned from Rachel Hollis’s book, Girl Wash Your Face. I want to give credit where it is due, but as a disclaimer, this book is not body positive and very steeped in diet culture, as I have written about before. However, I have found some of the tools in this book extremely helpful including her method of creating a roadmap that I will discuss below.
The first step is to recognize and accept the position you are in right now. If you don’t know where you are, how will you know which path to take to get you to your intended destination? If you don’t know your point A, how will you know the steps to get to your point B? Take a minute to access your current situation. What resources do you have right now? What skills and talent can you utilize? Who do you know? Who can you reach out to for help getting where you want to go? What habits do you have that could get in your way? What roadblocks do you foresee yourself needing to overcome?
Next, it’s time to brainstorm. In no particular order, write out everything you can possibly think that will get you to that goal. It doesn’t have to be in order or make any sense yet. They don’t even have to be good ideas. Just get them out of your head and on to some paper so you can evaluate them. Try to reach for around 20 ideas, but feel free to go over. Google search if you need to. Really take your time to do this. This will probably start to feel a little overwhelming, but don’t feel like you have to complete everything you’ve written down. This is just a brainstorm remember! The more you write down, though, the closer you get to finding your path.
Once you are satisfied with your brainstorm, now it is time to organize all of your ideas. We are going to be creating a sort of outline for our roadmap. First, identify the three brainstorm tasks that if completed would, without question, lead you to achieve your goal. Think of these three tasks as your guideposts along your journey. This may take some time to narrow down. That is okay. A good place to start is to figure out which of your brainstorm tasks will be accomplished just before reaching your goal. Then find the other two by working backward from there. There will be a number of tasks that lead up to each of these guideposts, but don’t think about the “how” just yet. These are just steps along your journey.
Once you have identified your guideposts, the next step is to identify your mile markers. These are the little steps along the way that will lead you to each guidepost. To do this you are going to do another brainstorm, but this time you are just looking at how to get from where you are now to your first guidepost. Just like last time, write everything down that comes to your brain. This is just a brainstorm! We are not looking at good or bad ideas right now. We are just getting the ideas out of our brains and on to some paper.
Once you have these written down, it’s time to narrow these down to the achievable, realistic steps it will take get you to your guideposts. It’s important as you are looking at your brainstorm to remember that the milestones that will lead you to your guidepost will most likely take a lot of work. Don’t cross things off because they seem hard or put them on your list because they seem like fun things to do. For example, as much as following inspirational people on social media helps me stay motivated. Scrolling through their Instagram feeds is not getting me any closer to my guidepost. This is sort of an obvious one, but be on the lookout for tasks like these when creating your roadmap. You can continue this strategy for each of your guideposts, but I prefer to reevaluate my mile makers as each guidepost is reached. That way you can approach your next steps with fresh eyes, and avoid getting overwhelmed.
Now you should have a better idea of the things you can do right now to reach your first guidepost and thus get closer to your goal. It’s important to note here that roadmaps like this one are not meant to make your journey easier. There will still be road bumps, missed turns, and redirects along the way. The roadmap is here to give you a sense of direction, and to provide you with guideposts and mile markers to use as a means of redirecting yourself when you go off the course. If you still find yourself lost, ask for directions. Who do you know that can help you get back on course? Or are there books, podcasts, or Youtube Channels that can help me clarify my way. I believe firmly that anyone can achieve anything they set out to do if they are determined and willing to believe themselves. You just have to be willing to create a plan and overcome the obstacles that come your way.
Did you find this interesting or helpful? How do organize your plan to achieve your goals?