Stay in your lane.
Pay attention to where you're going, not where your neighbor, friend, sister, or brother's friend's hairdresser is going. It doesn't matter; you're not going that way. You're going your way. Focus on that.
Accomplishing your goals takes a great amount of dedication. It means saying "no" to some things so you can say "yes" to better things.
In short, it takes laser-like focus.
It takes acting like a racehorse with blinders on, focused only on your single lane of the racetrack.
You have to be so committed to your goals and your journey that you're okay with turning a blind eye to what others are doing or telling you that you should do.
In my own life, this has looked like not worrying about missing out on new movies or TV shows that everyone else is talking about because I'm choosing to spend my time doing other things I enjoy more or watching things that make me happy (like Disney movies).
I choose to not worry about the fact that some people are going to grad school while I'm working; I could have chosen that path, but I didn't. And it does me no good to fret over having chosen the "wrong" path.
When I paid off my debt a few years ago, I had to be willing to cut costs in every area of my life in order to devote more of my money to paying off student loans and my car loan. I gave up shopping for anything besides necessities like groceries for about 8 months, and while I wouldn't say it was easy, it was definitely worth it!
A SPOONFUL OF MY OWN MEDICINE
It's easy to say those things, but much harder to follow through with it.
I'm sure you've seen, just like I have, that it's hard to not get distracted by the shiny things in our peripheral vision-- things like what our friends are doing with their lives.
I know that I've personally gone down too many rabbit holes trying to see how other people run their businesses, structure their websites, and show up on social media. At a certain level, doing so is healthy and functions as inspiration.
Beyond that point, it verges on obsession with doing it the "right" way (as if there was one right way) and procrastination as I put any kind of action on hold while I look and look and look some more.
But it's a waste of time to focus on their journeys and ignore our own. Of course, they can inspire and encourage us, but ultimately, we have to make the choices that are right for us and commit to our own journeys.
REMAIN FAITHFUL TO YOUR MISSION
I've said it before, but I'll say it again. It takes commitment to your "why" to follow through. It certainly takes a great deal of motivation to put on blinders and move through life just focused on your path without getting distracted by all the shiny, glittering things on the sidelines.
But strong, compelling "whys" can motivate us to do great things, to reach new heights, to create great change.
When you start losing sight of your goal, remember why you're doing it. Remind yourself that while your friends' paths are completely valid, you are not on their path.
Your paths may run parallel or cross for a time, but ultimately, you're on your own journey, headed toward your own goals and dreams. And if you keep those end results in mind, you'll be more likely to reach them without getting sidetracked.
You can do this, friend! You can stay committed. You can reach your goals and achieve your dreams! I believe in you!
How do you stay laser-focused on your goals and dreams? I'd love to hear from you in the comments!