Get All Access for $5/mo

This Bestselling Author Says These 4 Simple Mistakes Are Holding You Back From Planning Your Future Are you telling yourself the wrong story?

By Linda Lacina

Michael Hyatt

How Success Happens is a podcast featuring polar explorers, authors, ultra marathoners, artists and more to better understand what connects dreaming and doing. Linda Lacina, Entrepreneur.com's managing editor, guides these chats so anyone can understand the traits that underpin achievement and what fuels the decisions to push us forward. Listen below or click here to read more shownotes.

Can't quite finish that book you've been writing? Or lose that last 10 pounds? Maybe you've tried -- and failed-- so many times, you don't believe you'll ever make it.

But according to Michael Hyatt, there's hope.

Hyatt is a bestselling author and the founder of Michael Hyatt & Company, a firm that helps leaders find their maximum potential. His latest book,Your Best Year Ever: A 5 Step Plan for Achieving Your Most Important Goal, compiles research on how to make our dreams a reality. One major theme he touches on is some of the surprising reasons why goals go unmet.

Below are just a few mistakes people continue to make when trying to plan their future:

Related: Inventor, Entrepreneur and Inspiration for the Movie 'Joy' Joy Mangano Shares How to Be Successful

Not writing down your goals.

Keeping your goals visible helps you make them a priority -- some studies even say it can increase your likelihood of success by more than 40 percent. Hyatt says that most CEOs and top leaders don't usually do this simple step and don't have a written set of personal and professional goals.

Related: Hear How This Woman Coached Herself Through a Near-Death Experience to Become a One-Person Fitness Brand

Blabbering about your goal on social media.

Or anywhere, really. Research shows that talking about your goals can be detrimental to achieving them, says Hyatt, since we have the same sense of satisfaction when we talk about something as we might get from actually accomplishing the task. He believes it's better to be selective and find a partner who can keep us accountable and offer support.

Related: Podcast: When PowerPoints Weren't Working, This Powerful Exec Passed Out Comic Books Instead

Telling yourself the wrong story.

Hyatt writes in his book that to accomplish something "we have to believe we're up to the challenge." Those with limiting beliefs, who believe nothing can change, assume the worst and see more obstacles than possibilities, will never be able to think big and take the risks that make great things possible. In some cases these beliefs include limiting ideas about who we are and what we can and can't accomplish. If you find yourself saying things like "I'm not creative," "I'm not disciplined" or some other negative story, record the belief and evaluate whether it is empowering. This process can help upgrade your beliefs and remind yourself how much you really can control to turn your goals into a reality.

Related: Conversation is the Most Underused Innovation Tool

Waiting until tomorrow.

Hyatt cites Jim Rohn and his law of diminishing intent that finds that the longer we wait to take action, the less likely we'll be to actually take it. Waiting can come in a number of forms -- from procrastination to failing to fully plan to spending so much time planning it becomes a substitute for action. Hyatt suggests people set an ambitious goal that ensures the path ahead is not completely clear, but to get to work at this goal as quickly as possible. In this way, says Hyatt, you'll build momentum. "If you sit and wait until the time is right, nothing happens."

Learn more about his insights and research in this week's podcast.

To subscribe to this podcast find us on the following platforms: SoundCloud, Stitcher, iTunes, Google Play.

Linda Lacina

Entrepreneur Staff

Linda Lacina is the former managing editor at Entrepreneur.com. Her work has appeared in the Wall Street Journal, Smart Money, Dow Jones MarketWatch and Family Circle. Email her at llacina@entrepreneur.com. Follow her at @lindalacina on Twitter. 

Want to be an Entrepreneur Leadership Network contributor? Apply now to join.

Editor's Pick

Business Solutions

Increase Productivity with This Microsoft 365 Subscription, Now $25 Off

It can make the entrepreneur life a lot easier.

Business News

Apple Pay Later Is Ending. Here's What's Taking Its Place.

The program was available for less than a year.

Leadership

This Artist Answered a Businessman's 'Powerful' Question — Then His Work Became 'the Poster Child for Juneteenth': 'Your Network Really Becomes Your Net Worth'

Reginald Adams was the executive director of a Houston-based art museum for more than a decade before he decided to launch his own public art and design firm.

Leadership

Harvard Business School Professor Says 65% of Startups Fail for One Reason. Here's How to Avoid It.

Team alignment isn't nice to have -- it's critical for running a successful business.

Business News

Here's What Companies Are Open and Closed on Juneteenth 2024

Since it became a holiday in 2021, Juneteenth has been recognized by some major corporations as a paid day off.

Growing a Business

I Hit $100 Million in Annual Revenue by Being More Transparent — Here Are the 3 Strategies That Helped Me Succeed

Three road-tested ways to be more transparent and build relationships that can transform your business — without leaving you feeling nightmarishly over-exposed.