You may have heard it before: “Progress, not perfection.” But what does it mean?
There’s a famous saying that goes:
“Every marathon begins with a single step.”
When it comes to your goals and dreams,
They can often seem so far out of reach that it intimidates and discourages you to the point of never starting in the first place.
Whether you’re trying to create passive income streams, build a successful business, or just simply become a better version of yourself…
It’s important to remember:
Progress is significantly more important than perfection.
In the same way compound interest stacks up over time,
So do small actions, leading to significant long-term progress.
When I had my first goal of “making $100,000 in a year…”
I struggled for so long because the number “$100,000” was what I focused on.
It seemed like an impossible achievement,
And week after week I would earn nothing from my various online ventures.
But then, something happened.
I switched my focus from making $100k in one year,
To instead making $2000 a week.
$2,000 a week for 52 weeks comes out to $104,000 in one year.
When I finally started breaking down my larger long-term goals into smaller micro-goals,
Achieving my end-goal became easier, more manageable, and far less intimidating.
I then realized I could break this down even further.
I asked myself:
“How can I make $2,000 per week, or $8,000 per month?”
In order to meet these weekly micro goals, I realized I could do so by:
- Selling 1 thing per month at a price of $8,000 or 1 thing per week at a price of $2,000
- Selling 2 things per month at a price of $4,000 or 2 things per week at a price of $1,000
- Selling 4 things per month at a price of $2,000 or 4 things per week at a price of $500
- Selling 8 things per month at a price of $1,000 or 8 things per week at a price of $250
You get the point.
Once I realized in order to make $100,000 per year all I had to do was:
- Sell two $1,000 products or services per week, or
- Sell four $2,000 products or services per month…
Suddenly now all I had to focus on was creating a product or service worth $1000 – $2000…
That I could sell at a rate of 4 to 8 times per month.
This was a far easier goal to focus on compared to focusing on making $100,000 twelve months later.
As the saying goes,
“Rome wasn’t built in a day.”
It’s important to remember that significant progress takes time, but small gains every day add up.
If you want to improve your public speaking skills, commit to practicing for just 10 minutes every day.
While it may not seem like much, practicing for 10 minutes every day for a year adds up to over 60 hours of practice.
If your goal is to read more books this year, commit to reading for 20 minutes every night before bed.
Set yourself up for success by putting your book on your pillow so that it’s already sitting there waiting for you when you climb in.
By reading for 20 minutes every night, you’ll end up reading for 120 hours over the course of a year.
Imagine how many books you could get through in 120 hours.
Those who fail to plan, plan to fail.
Start by setting a long-term generic goal, such as “creating a successful online business.”
Then, break down that goal into smaller, more manageable, specific steps, such as:
- creating a website
- building an email list
- creating a social media presence.
Once you have your smaller steps, break those down into even smaller steps, such as:
- creating a content calendar
- researching your target audience
- Creating X number pieces of content per week
The further down and more specific you get, the easier and more manageable long-term goals become.
A great method to use for this process is setting SMART goals and plans, which I talk more in-depth about in my article You Can’t Improve What You Can’t See: Open Your Eyes.
Mel Robbins, motivational speaker, author, and entrepreneur, created a concept known as The 5 Second Rule, which is a simple but effective tool to help you take action towards your goals.
The concept is simple:
When you have an idea or a goal, countdown from 5 and take action.
ANY kind of action, just do something!
The 5 Second Rule helps overcome the fear and hesitation that can prevent you from taking action towards your goals.
It’s easy to become overwhelmed or procrastinate, but by counting down from 5 and taking some immediate (even if small) action, you’re breaking down that mental barrier that prevents progress.
And as Atomic Habits author James Clear would say, it’s much easier to keep going once you’ve started than it is to get started, so make getting started the priority.
The Never Miss Twice rule by James is also a powerful tool to help you maintain momentum towards your goals.
By “never missing twice,” you’re ensuring that you stay on track with your habits and goals, even when you slip up.
As James points out in this keynote presentation:
“Even if you miss every other time, you’re still making progress 50% of the time.”
As he also points out, if you were to just focus on getting 1% better every day…
At the end of one year, you’d be 37 times better than when you started.
Achieving long-term goals can be a daunting task,
But by breaking them down into smaller, more manageable steps, you can make progress towards your goals every day.
Progress, not perfection.
Check out this interview with Mel Robbins on Lewis Howes’ School of Greatness YouTube channel, where she goes in depth as to how she came up with the 5 Second Rule, what it is, and how you can use it to drastically change your life.
And if you’re interested, here are 2 additional ways I can help you:
1. If you’re looking for a simple, streamlined, organized step-by-step process you can follow to begin building your own passive income streams, I recommend starting with an affordable course.
→ The Full-time Freedom Codex is a self-paced online video course where I teach you how to quickly and easily create, automate, and monetize digital content based on your hobbies, passions, and interests. You can learn more by clicking here.
2. If you’re looking for personalized digital product development or sales funnel design services for an already established business or personal brand, I recommend checking out Apex Haus.
→ Apex Haus helps creators, coaches, and CEOs increase their income, influence, and impact with personalized digital product development and sales funnel design. You can learn more or see if you qualify by clicking here.
In full transparency, not all, but some of the links you find throughout my emails will be affiliate links, which means if you end up making a purchase using one of my affiliate links, I will get paid a small commission.