4. Be a Realistic Optimist

When you are setting a goal, by all means engage in lots of positive thinking about how likely you are to achieve it. Believing in your ability to succeed is enormously helpful for creating and sustaining your motivation. But whatever you do, don’t underestimate how difficult it will be to reach your goal. Most goals worth achieving require time, planning, effort, and persistence. Studies show that thinking things will come to you easily and effortlessly leaves you ill prepared for the journey ahead and significantly increases the odds of failure.

There are quite a number of motivational speakers and self-improvement books with a surprisingly simple message: believe that success will come easily to you, and it will ...

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