Career Bytes Dream Job

Published on October 2nd, 2012 | by Coach Liz


Success planning part 3: master your goal

Remember your New Year’s resolution? Been awhile hasn’t it?  Now that you are reminded of it,  maybe it’s faltering, or maybe you just gave up on it altogether. No worries. January 1st is not the only time to set and pursue a goal. The day you become really ready for change is actually the very best day to begin.

Remember Shane from Success Planning, Part 1 and 2?  He is a phenomenal bass player who’s working towards a full-time career in music. Shane’s problem was that he’d set a goal to be financially independent with his music career, yet still couldn’t afford to lose the day job. He wanted to devote all his time and energy to his music career. Sound familiar?

Shane wanted a different year. Your year can be different too, especially if you’re frustrated. It’s never too late, and today is a new day!

Frustration was extremely motivating to Shane. It moved him to reach out for artist coaching to achieve his goal. We worked together on clarifying his vision and then actualizing a plan. Now Shane’s challenge was with step three, Mastering The Goal. It wasn’t that Shane was afraid of hard work. In fact, quite the opposite. With the implementation of our first two steps, he was able to see the path clearly. Shane was on a roll, knocking things off his “to do” list with lightning speed.

Then life happened.

The relationship he’d been in for two years fell apart. Shane’s confidence was crushed, almost as much as his heart. This was a problem that pressed in on his music career. The outcome stole his enthusiasm.

The good news was that Shane had already worked through the mastery section of his goal plan, on paper anyway. He knew what needed to happen. He just didn’t feel like doing it. In years past, this was precisely the dilemma that prevented him from reaching his goals. Life kept happening. One year, it was his mom’s bout with cancer. Another year, it was a financial crisis. His car died, his student loans all came due and medical bills piled up. Last year, he was playing “catch up” and because he didn’t have a plan, the year just slipped away. The saving grace for Shane this time was the two simple concepts he had crafted into Step 3, the mastery step of his plan.

Step 3: Master your goal

  • Identify one or more accountability partners
  • Utilize a time management system.

Get an accountability partner

Before beginning your journey, you need to create an agreement with an accountability partner. They must be as committed to your goal as you are. Your accountability partner’s mission is to look over your plans with you and encourage you to stay on task. A band leader encourages a musician to practice daily; a coach encourages a basketball player to stay on the court in season and off, and a runner attempts to beat his own time. As you develop new habits and routines, you and your accountability partner must be consistent in pursuing progress.

In the meantime, life will happen. You’ll hit potholes and get derailed, or find yourself on a slippery slope. In those times it’s important to have a support system to help you navigate, and keep you accountable. Your accountability partner can be a friend, relative, coach, or neighbor. You must be able to trust them to be consistent and honest with you in checking on your progress. They have to be there when you need them. You may even desire several accountability partners.

Shane could trust his Uncle Mark. He also asked me to be an accountability partner. Between the two of us reviewing his plan, we were able to hold Shane accountable for each of his stepping stones. He asked us to stay in touch several times a week by email. Phone calls and texting also happened along the way. It made all the difference in the world. Whatever it took, Shane and his team were up for the task. When he was losing steam, we’d talk about what really mattered and how to move forward with his plan. Of course, this worked well because Shane was committed to change. He wanted it bad. He wanted change more than he wanted to nurture his hurt feelings over the lost relationship. He even believed that achieving his goal would make her see how she had lost out.

Time management

What is your relationship with time?

Time can be your best friend, or your worst enemy. With goal achievement, the good news is you have tremendous control over how you manage the 24 hours you’re given in every single day. You need to decide how to spend this priceless commodity, or time itself and its potential rewards will out smart you and pass you by. How you view time, how you manage it, and how you demonstrate respect for it is crucial.

A solid time management system is a must for reaching your goals. There is no shortage of systems out there!  By effectively managing his time during this emotional and confusing period, Shane knew specifically what to do, instead of having his next steps drop off the radar all together. The structure of the “plan” kept him on track. Between the three of us, Shane continued to make strides toward his goal, despite life.

Shane has since reached his goal. He was able to leave the day job and is a full time musician, making money with each gig and selling songs from his website. Shane recently shared an insight with me that he gained during the coaching process. I’m convinced that this insight is the key to his success. Shane discovered that confidence in the plan carried him through the toughest times. Having confidence in the goal achievement strategy created momentum. Momentum fueled desire and desire sustained confidence. It was a winning circle to success. Remember, the devil is in the details, but so are the keys to success!

Haven’t read Part 1 yet? Success planning part 1: New Year’s resolution gone wrong

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About the Author

Liz Merriweather is the co-founder and lead coach at Artist Development Coaching, a company devoted to furthering the lives and careers of artists via the miracles of life and career planning. She brings over 24 years experience to the table as a therapist in private practice and as a life coach specializing in helping people achieve clarity. You can connect with Coach Liz at

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