Taking the First Step to Success

Boy student has taken the first step on the stairway to school.
You may have set a SMARTER goal, but nothing will be achieved unless you take the first step towards your goal! You may be clear about why you want to reach your goal and can visualize what life will be like when this goal has been attained. However, it is important that you work out what your first step will be towards the goal and then take action. Make sure you do something that will move you closer to completing your goal.

When I was in Grade 6 at school, an “Intelligence Test” was administered to all children in my grade. Following the test my parents were informed by the school that results had shown that I should be top of my class. My parents challenged me with these words “If you can come top of the class we will give you a box of paints.”

I was surprised, as my parents had been, that I was considered capable of coming first as I had never seen myself in that light. I knew that I was one of the smarter children in the class, but thought that three or four were smarter than me. Much as I would have loved to win a box of paints, I could not visualize myself out-performing those few students who worked faster than I did and I had no idea of how to go about improving my results. Consequently, I never did receive that box of paints.

At the time, I knew that I stumbled with instant recall of number facts – both addition and multiplication tables. Had I practiced these, perhaps daily at home, to the point that I felt confident that I had 100% accuracy, I believe I may well have won that box of paints and boosted my self-image also.

What was lacking was the belief that the goal could be attained, a plan with steps to achieve the goal and then taking the first step (in this case, daily practice of addition and multiplication facts).

Reaching a “big” goal can be a daunting prospect, unless it is broken down into smaller chunks which are manageable. This is a skill that can be learned with practice but more easily with the help of a mentor. This is why aspiring athletes, tennis players and other sports-people employ coaches. They identify the skills needed to be developed and break them down into sub-skills so that their clients can gradually build up their repertoire of mastered moves which will bring the sports-person to their peak performance so they can achieve their goals.

A parent can be an effective mentor to a child but sometimes it helps to look for someone outside the immediate family circle. This is where tutoring by a professional can be of great benefit, even for a short time, until certain skills are mastered and the child sees himself or herself as being able to achieve success.

What is the first step you could take to achieve your goal? I would love to hear from you. Please leave a comment below.