It’s a fact of life: we all want things. Some small things (a burger for lunch; a new tattoo) and some big things (financial success; freedom to travel). Those desires give us purpose and drive us forward, but they take work and dedication to become reality. Understanding how to get what you want is difficult. So whatever you’re after, here are a few tips and reminders to help you get it.
Find Your Vision
If you don’t already have a clear vision in mind for what you want, take the time to figure it out. Ask yourself what’s most important to you, and where you see yourself in five years. Think about what brings you satisfaction, and where your mind goes when you daydream.
Be honest and bold. Picture who you would be or what you would do if nothing stood in your way. Focus on exactly what you want, rather than what others may want for you. The clearer and more authentic you are in your goals, the more focused and confident you’ll be in pursuing them.
Make a Plan
Some people luck into exactly what they want. The rest of us need a plan. If you want to be fit, your plan will be a workout schedule and nutrition guide. To be your own boss, you might draft a business plan.
Whatever form it takes, your plan is your roadmap. It shows you the path from where you are to where you want to be, identifying key milestones along the way.
Remind yourself of your vision regularly, and work toward your goals in some way every single day. There will likely be challenges, and you may have to make sacrifices. When something doesn’t work the way you’d hoped, find another way. Don’t wait for others to tell you what to do; take the initiative to make it happen.
Ask for What You Want
Ask for the raise, the seat upgrade, the corporate sponsorship. But don’t just ask. Ask with confidence and without apology. Make your case. Show the person you’re asking how they can benefit from your request. Instead of assuming they’ll say no, give them a chance to say yes.
Stay Agile and Aligned with Your Vision
Be open to opportunities as they become available to you, but be strategic in what you accept. Consider whether it will move you closer to what you want, or if it’s a detour you’re willing to take.
If you want to travel, a promotion with more responsibility and longer hours may limit your adventures, or it might be the thing you need right now to fund the life you want later. Only you know what fits within the vision you have set, and what compromises you can – or can’t – make.
Surround Yourself with People Who Support You
Your goals may be yours alone, but you don’t have to pursue them on your own. Surround yourself with a community of people who are invested in your success and ready to cheer you on. Find a mentor or coach who will share their knowledge and experience to help you navigate unfamiliar territory. Ask for help if and when you need it (chances are, you will).
Maybe your big goal is too complex, too scary, and too overwhelming for you to tackle right now. That’s okay; start where you are. Practice asking, and get used to hearing both yes and no. Build your confidence with small successes until you’re ready to go big.
Now that you know how to get what you want, whatever you do, don’t wait. Start today.