Why You Must Constantly Think About Your Goal to Achieve It

by Bamboo Forest

“The ancestor to every action is a thought.” ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

The above would have been sufficient for a post, but let’s delve deeper into this…

You shouldn’t think discouraging thoughts, for then you’ll be discouraged.

You should instead think encouraging thoughts because then you’ll be encouraged. And you should do so constantly.

Your choice of thoughts determines whether you’re inspired or not. If you want to succeed, you’ll want as much inspiration as you can get.

Two Key Ingredients to Success

Inspiration and motivation are the two key ingredients that lead to success. Without them you’ll find it very difficult to produce sustained action that takes you closer to your goal. With motivation and inspiration your ability to take the massive action necessary to reach your goals increases drastically.

There is a catch, of course. While it’s true that being inspired and motivated are the key components that lead to success, I never claimed it’s easy to have them or to sustain them.

Actually, it can be a challenge because you have to overcome inertia to build inspiration and motivation. Once you’re inspired and motivated, you have to exert effort to maintain and cultivate these mindsets.

You can’t just wait for inspiration to knock on your door. Instead, break the door down and allow inspiration to surface as a result of the actions you’ve decided to take.

Ever heard the saying, “You can do anything you put your mind to”?

I’m sure you’ve heard it a zillion times and there’s a good reason for that:

It’s absolutely true.

The challenge, then, is keeping those motivating and inspiring thoughts in your mind consistently. This takes work, but for the results, it’s absolutely worth it.

Methods to Build Motivation and Inspiration

Seinfeld method: Get a wall calendar and put it in the open where you’ll see it often. Every day you fulfill your goal, whether it’s writing 500 words, not smoking, or flossing, mark a big x for the day you succeeded. After enough successes you’ll create a long chain of x’s that you won’t want to compromise.

The above strategy contributes to both reminding you of your goal and encouraging you to maintain consistency.

Read something inspirational every day for at least 30 minutes: This practice will give you a daily reminder of the identity you desire and will inspire you to take action.

I can’t recommend this powerful practice enough. Do it even if you don’t feel like it.

Post reminders of your goal: For example, if you’re trying to lose weight, stick a piece of paper to your fridge reminding you of the weight you want to lose by a certain date. This way you can’t even open the refrigerator without being reminded of what you want to accomplish.

You could also post your goal or inspirational quotes or both all over your house so that you’re constantly encouraged to think thoughts that empower you.

Make a public declaration of your commitment to your goal: For example, if you’re trying to quit smoking, you can tell everyone you know. This will generate powerful motivation for you as being caught smoking after telling everyone you’re quitting is embarrassing and will threaten your pride.

Have self determination: This is the most important component to success. Because without self determination, you won’t even try any of the above strategies.

Or… you may try, but you’ll give up prematurely.

It’s deficient to persevere for only a week or even a couple weeks.

You have to persevere until you reach your goal. Granted, it’s often wise to change your strategy along the way by noticing what works and what doesn’t.

Don’t be stubborn to changing strategies, but do be stubborn to giving up.

No one ever accomplished their goal by giving up. Perseverance is your greatest ally, and don’t you ever forget that.

Bamboo Forest is a professional email life coach and the founder of Tick Tock Timer

Photo by Peter Kaminski

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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Stefanie @ Revision Fairy November 3, 2010 at 9:52 pm

“Read something inspirational every day for at least 30 minutes: This practice will give you a daily reminder of the identity you desire and will inspire you to take action.”

Such an important reminder! Forgetting the identity that you desire/your goals happens a lot more frequently than some may think. It’s constant practice and vigilance that keeps us inspired and on the right track.


Bamboo Forest November 3, 2010 at 10:48 pm

@ Stefanie: I think we forget about who we want to be sometimes and it’s important not to do that. We simply just don’t think about it.

If, though, we can be fully aware of the identity we want for ourselves, we create powerful motivation to stay in alignment with that.

Here’s a quote by Anthony Robbins:

“One of the strongest forces in the human personality is the drive to preserve the integrity of our own identity.”

Thanks for stopping by and leaving the thoughtful comment.


Scott McIntyre November 4, 2010 at 9:04 am

Hi Bamboo,

These are nice suggestions on how to keep the source of your inspiration and motivation with you. I’ve found that having at hand some kind of reminder of what I want to achieve – and why – is a great way to encourage me on.;

Perseverance can bea difficult skill to master, and anything you can do to help you stick with your goal is worth trying.

Giving up might seem to be the easy option when things get tough but, in the long run, never reaching your goal is a lot harder.


The Vizier November 4, 2010 at 9:26 am

Hi Bamboo Forest,

You have made good points in this article. Our thoughts have a great impact on our actions. Like water which can float or sink a boat, our thoughts can encourage or discourage us, it influences whether we will succeed or not. Thus it is of paramount importance to manage our thoughts well.

I like the methods that you have given to build motivation and inspiration. The ones that resonate strongest with me are:

[Read something inspirational every day for at least 30 minutes]

This is a very important practice because the way we nourish our minds affects our thoughts. If we read depressing literature, we will become depressed. If we read inspirational books, we will be inspired. It is that simple, but even so, this method is often overlooked.

[Post reminders of your goal]

Reminders can also take the form of inspirational quotes. Again reminders serve the same purpose as inspirational reading as it conditions you into the frame of mind that you need to take action.

A point I wish to add is that you have to know why you want to reach your goal or purpose. In other words, you purpose has to be so compelling that you will funnel all your time and effort into attaining it. Unless you can reframe your purpose in such a way that you have to acheive it at all cost, you will always struggle with motivation and determination. This is not to say you will be always extremely motivated and gung-ho. But with a truly compelling purpose, even on days when you feel like giving up, you will press forth anyway because your purpose compels you.

This purpose I speak of should be attached to your meaning of life somehow. Whether it is some great work you need to accomplish or something you do for the sake of your loved ones, having such a purpose will always inspire you because it affects the fundamental core of your being.

Thanks for sharing this post!


Alex Blackwell November 4, 2010 at 10:30 am

A goal-achieving strategy that has helped me is to have an “accountability” buddy Not only do I tell this person of my goal, but I ask the friend to hold me accountable if I begin to steer of course.



Bamboo Forest November 4, 2010 at 5:51 pm

@ Scott: You mention a good point. One should know not just what, but also why they want to achieve something.

Well said, never reaching your goal *is* a lot harder than the “cost” of perseverance.

@ The Vizier: you write,

“But with a truly compelling purpose, even on days when you feel like giving up, you will press forth anyway because your purpose compels you.”

That’s a good way of putting it. If we truly know the why and our purpose is strong, the motivation will follow.

Excellent points across the board.

@ Alex: Accountability is very powerful for generating motivation. And having someone to keep you accountable is a good practice when you have a goal that’s important for you to achieve.

Looks like it’s a powerful weapon in your arsenal.


jonathanfigaro November 5, 2010 at 9:36 pm

We become what we think like earl nightingale said. We must fill out minds with our dreams and only our dreams. we must vividly see ourselves as we wish to becomes. And let the rest of the world fall on our laps.


Bamboo Forest November 5, 2010 at 10:02 pm

@ Jonathan: Well said. Filling our minds with our dreams is wisdom. It can be challenging to do at times, but it’s what we must do if we want to fulfill them.


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