Aim Small: The Best Big Secret to Reaching Your Goals

The Best Big Secret to Reaching Your Goals


“Be the person with embarrassing goals and impressive results instead of one of the many people with impressive goals and embarrassing results.” – Stephen Guise


Hi, everyone! How’s your 2017 going thus far? Have you been sticking to your New Year’s resolutions and making progress toward your goals? If not, you’re in the right place.

Goals, as we all know, are easy to make, but not so easy to reach. We have genuine intentions and strong desires, and yet we still fall short of seeing our goals achieved and wind up disappointed and often cynical about the whole goal-setting process. Why set goals if our track record proves that we never succeed in reaching them? None of us wants to feel like a failure.

I don’t know about you, but a series of unreached goals left me convinced me that was the problem. I was undisciplined, weak, unmotivated, lazy… At least that was the harmful narrative playing like a broken record inside my head.

And it was wrong.

The problem wasn’t with me, but with the nature of my goals. They were too big, too overwhelming. I felt defeated before I even began pursuing them. So, I did something that seemed completely counterintuitive and in fact foolish. I thought smaller.

Instead of telling myself I would write for four straight hours a day, I set a goal to write for 10 minutes without any interruptions.

Instead of telling myself I would eat a green vegetable at every meal, I set a goal to put a handful of spinach in my omelet in the morning.

Instead of telling myself I would pray for 20 minutes every morning before getting out of bed, I set a goal to sit still before God for five minutes first thing.

And guess what happened? These small, “embarrassing” goals yielded impressive results.

Those 10 minutes of uninterrupted writing turned into hours. That one handful of spinach led to another at lunch and at dinner. Those five minutes with the Lord in the morning soon doubled and led to even more time with Him at night.

Food for Thought: Audacious goals might sound good, but what good are they if they’re not realistic for you right now?

A few months ago, writing five pages a day was definitely not a realistic goal for me, but I set it anyway because I heard that was an average minimum for many writers. But I wasn’t at that level yet, just like many of the new CrossFit athletes we coach at our gym aren’t ready to run a sub seven-minute mile with some of our seasoned clients or lift five hundred pounds off the floor.

We’re all at different stages. Don’t let people around you set the standard for what you should be doing to reach your goal.

You want to lose fifty pounds? My best advice is to set an embarrassingly small goal, such as:

  • Exercise for five minutes.
  • Do 10 bodyweight squats.
  • Walk around the block before dinner.
  • Eat one less slice of toast at breakfast and substitute a half cup of berries in its place.
  • Drink water or herbal tea at one meal instead of soda and juice.

You get the idea. You will be surprised how much more you do once you’ve proven to yourself that you really can stick to a goal.

Positive behaviors, no matter how small, are deceptively powerful. They attest to the fact that you are moving forward, serving as an invaluable confidence boost which will in turn propel you toward your larger, ultimate goals.

You’ve probably heard this quote from Norman Vincent Peale:  “Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.” Well, why not aim for something lower, like a power line or an airplane? The chances are good that you’ll hit a target that’s closer to you, and that will very likely encourage you to aim a little higher, and a little higher… Soon, you’re looking back at Earth from the moon or maybe even Mars!

What’s one embarrassing health and/or fitness-related goal you can set for yourself right now? How about an embarrassing spiritual goal, marital goal, or occupational goal? I challenge you to aim small. I bet you’ll be amazed by the impressive progress that you make!

And now, without further ado, time to save this photo so you can reference it for your next quickie workout! It’ll just take you eight minutes! (No excuses! ;-)) I’ve include how-to YouTube videos below as well!


At-Home Quickie Workout


Note: If desired, you may certainly use a weight for the Russian twists and/or dumbbells for the Pendulum Lunges.

Russian Twists
Pendulum Lunges

In other news, I am super elated to share that my first Christian Women’s novel, Armor for Orchids, is out now and has received some wonderful and encouraging reviews! Here’s the link to check it out in e-book and paperback!:

Have an absolutely amazing week walking with your King!

Quote of the Month: 

Finding, following, keeping, struggling,
Is He sure to bless?
Saints, apostles, prophets, martyrs, 

Answer, “Yes.”