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Stop Failing At Accomplishing Your Big Goals?

Updated: Oct 14, 2021

How often do you find yourself racing at the last minute to meet a deadline?

Do you often find that you end up finishing projects after you had promised they would be complete?

Have you let people down because you didn’t have enough time to fulfill your obligations?


There are many reasons why most people do not achieve the goals, but the main culprits are the wrong information, following the wrong processes, and having the wrong mindset. In this article, we’ll define the planning fallacy, show you how to recognize it, and detail the specific things you can do to overcome it and reach your goals.







Using the Wrong Tools

We have been taught that achieving massive success is achieved through single-minded focus, strong willpower, and having a good plan. I have learned that, most of the time, this is just not true.


Sure having a great plan, being focused, and exercising willpower can make a different and in some cases have definitely had a few success stories. But most successful people have become successful through routine, attitude, and association with like-minded people.


The planning fallacy refers to a prediction phenomenon, all too familiar to many, wherein people underestimate the time it will take to complete a future task, despite knowledge that previous tasks have generally taken longer than planned.


The simple truth is most people do not know how to create a a plan and follow it through today with success. In psychology there is condition called the planning fallacy.


How the Planning Fallacy Impacts Your Time Management Efforts


Even with careful planning, you cannot foresee every single obstacle that might pop up. Your best approach is to minimize the gap between your estimate and reality.


1. Make a step by step plan


When you start working on a detailed plan, you realize some of the problems well in advance. The deeper you go, the closer your estimate will be to reality.


That said, going down to the extreme details is not always feasible or fruitful. At some point, you have to get off the planning table and get the work done.

Even with careful planning, you cannot foresee every single obstacle that might pop up. Your best approach is to minimize the gap between your estimate and reality.


2. Break significant projects into smaller tasks

As much as possible, break bigger goals into smaller tasks. Anticipating the time required for a smaller task is far simpler than predicting the work involved for a massive project.


Smaller tasks help you set milestones and measure progress. When you miss some or achieve some faster, you can make the necessary adjustments to reach your final goal.


3. Learn from your mistakes

Use the previous practice to guide future estimates. Have meetings to go over lessons learned, and make sure that you manage and record that organizational knowledge so that it isn’t lost. Then use that knowledge to help with planning similar tasks in the future.

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