Oct 31, 2014

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My Two Cents on Achieving Goals — For Latinas

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source: sirwiseowl

Let’s talk about achieving goals, de amiga a amiga. This week, I posted the following question on this website’s Facebook fan page:  “What’s one goal you’ve been contemplating for a long, long time, but have never moved forward with it?” Here are some of the responses I received:

  • Going back to school
  • Live in another country
  • Write a book
  • Get a job
  • Completing a degree
  • Combining passion for writing and business

These goals have one thing in common:  they are totally doable. Unfortunately, many of us get stuck as a result of small thinking, a ton of excuses and lack of passion.  Let me tell you something, whether you work on your goal(s) or not, time will pass.  If your goal is to go back to school, take one class per semester.  You might graduate in 6 years, but the reality is that doing nothing about it will only lead to having nothing in 6 years.  Don’t have the time to take one class per semester?  Nonsense. Take the damn class online, or take it on the weekend, or take it in the evening.  Carve out 3 hours a week from television watching, the internet, Facebook, blogging, sitting on your butt, and DO IT.

Here are a few consejitos on achieving your goals:

1.  Stop being so nice. Yes, we Latinas have a thing for being nice.  We want to help and rescue the whole world, but our own selves.  There’s nothing wrong with being kind, but don’t do it at the expense of your goals, your time and energy. This means you’ll need to set boundaries, lots of boundaries around your time and what others expect of you, including friends and family.

2. Think BIG, really BIG. I just watched a documentary on Ted Turner, the highly successful media mogul and philanthropist.  If you read about his life, you’ll realize what a BIG thinker and visionary this man has been.  His businesses have ranged from bill boards, to television networks, to owning a baseball team, to owning more land than any other American in the country.  If there is one theme that runs across the lifespan of this guy, it is his enthusiastic ability to think big, big, big.

You want to write a book?  Think “NYT bestseller.”  You want to go back to school?  Think graduate school, and beyond.  If your goal is to set up a business and make $40,000 a year, you’ll most likely end up making that much money if you are successful.  However, my question to you is:  why not set the bar at $100,000?  $200,000?  $500,000.  It is possible.

3.  Be fearless. Stop being a whimp.  Whimps get no where.  Be strong, be couragous.  Take chances and take risks.  The only thing you should be afraid of is not trying hard enough.  Take the plunge and leave behind la pendejada.

4.  Work hard, work really, really hard. Realize that if you want to achieve anything worthwhile, you are going to need to work hard times 10. The higher and bigger the goal, the more time, energy and effort you’ll need to invest.  If you’re not up for the amount of work it will need, you might not want it that badly.

5.  Lo barato sale caro. This is a Spanish proverb — cheap stuff is costly, in the long run… This applies to services, products and consultations.  If you are planning to develop a fancy business with good earning potential, you’ll need to consult the best.  Don’t settle for the less than, or the least expensive consultant.  If you can’t afford someone’s talent, find a mentor or someone who’s willing to give you the best advice or consultation you can get.  Or, learn from others who have achieved exactly what you hope to achieve.

6.  Don’t waste time on the small stuff. I see a lot of people online, everywhere.  How on earth are you going to develop your business, or focus on your projects if you are here, there and every where.  Choose wisely how you spend your time.  Keep focused, and don’t let the small stuff distract.

7.  Use your network and support system. You’ll be surprised how many people you know that can help you move your plans forward.  Connect to them.  Tell them about your plans.  Ask for help.

8.  Stop worrying about el que diran. Worried about what mami’s going to say if you decide to leave your job and set up your own business?  Or worried that your husband will think you’re crazy for wanting to write a book?  Grow up.  You’re not in middle school any more.  Your mami already lived her life her way.  It’s time you live your life your way. Do what you need to do.

9.  It’s OK to work on multiple goals and projects. People are quick to judge those who enjoy working on multiple projects.  There is nothing wrong with working hard and focusing on several goals at once. If you have the time and energy, and you’re able to fulfill your life’s obligations, more power to you.  Don’t let people bring you down.  Who cares?

10.  Stop making excuses. Here is a list of terrible excuses you give yourself for not pursuing and achieving your goals:

  • I don’t have the time
  • I’m too old for that
  • I don’t have the money
  • I don’t have the skills
  • My kids are too young
  • My parents won’t approve
  • I have too many ideas
  • I’m tired
  • I’m afraid I’ll make a bad decision
  • It’s too much work
  • I’m not that smart
  • What if…

So, what’s one goal you’ve been contemplating for a long while?

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Angélica Pérez-Litwin

Angélica Pérez-Litwin

Dr. Perez-Litwin is the Founder & CEO of ELLA Leadership Institute, a multi-platform professional development organization designed to advance the careers and leadership of women. She's the creative force behind the LATINAS THINK BIG™ national tour, sponsored and live-streamed by Google.

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Comments

  1. Gracias… mil gracias for sharing. Just this morning on my commute to the office, I was thinking about my dreams and goals – and the excuses I use to not pursuing them… Fear, time, young children, a busy schedule… Ya es hora de dejarnos de “pendejadas” as you say… Thank you for sharing a bit of inspiration on a Thursday morning… Claudia

  2. Claudia, I am often surprised to see how much we can actually achieve when we set our minds to it. Sometimes we just need a kick in the back…

  3. Be fearless! For sure. No mas whimpy!

    And no “why?”… how about “why not!?”

    Love it, Angelica!

  4. This is great Angelica! I especially loved the part about not worrying about what other people will think. I have struggled with that with my writing and sometimes I still wonder what people are saying about what I write, but I need to silence the doubts within to fully exploit my potential. :)

  5. This is probably one of the best articles I have read on the web yet! Makes me reflect on myself, both the good and bad about my choices and chances I haven’t teen. Very, very motivational, I absolutely love everything you said. Keep writing things like this!! :D

  6. having accomplished a lot during my life and still not resting on my laurels, I could not agree more…launching my business Roots and Wings and lovin it!!!

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