Change Now! 5 Steps to Turn Intentions Into Reality

Change Now! 5 Steps to Turn Intentions Into Reality

Remember that leadership resolution you set at the beginning of the year? The feedback you were given? The development plan you made for where you want to be in 2 years?

How’s it going? Making a lot of progress? 

The truth is, most of us don’t get too far in our goals to improve as managers and leaders. We have the best intentions. We want to learn new skills, change behaviors, or accomplish good things.

So, what gets in the way?

One answer is that change seems too complicated. Too much information, too many moving parts, too many distractions. Turning intentions into reality can be difficult.

Our book Change Now! distills the theory and tactics that we know work and puts them into one unintimidating, creative, easy-to-do process. Part self-help guide, part inspiration, this workbook is a hands-on, shareable way to help you make the changes that matter most to you.

It can help you put your time and energy into being better and doing better, and living with intention at both work and home.

5 Steps to Simplify Change & Turn Intentions Into Reality

How to Live With Intention at Work and Home

Infographic: 5 Steps to Simplify Change and Turn Intentions Into Reality

The book Change Now! takes you through these 5 steps that will help you follow through on turning intentions into reality and making a change in your life: 

1. Get Focused.

Yes, you have a massive list of things you could do, should do, or want to do — but you can only change one thing at a time. Pick one.

  • Focus on a change that energizes you.
  • Focus on a change that creates positive outcomes.
  • Focus on a change that is at the right level of difficulty — not so easy that you don’t feel challenged, and not so difficult that you can’t make the change.

2. Choose “What.”

This is also called goal-setting. Just be sure to set goals that align with your values. Do you want to change how you act? Improve a skill? Make things happen?

Choose just a few important goals, then:

  • Write them down.
  • Post them.
  • Say them aloud!

3. Figure Out “How.”

You need a plan. You won’t change by wishful thinking or a vague to-do list. Can you put as much time into planning how you achieve your goals as you would planning a vacation?

Your change plan should be built around 4 things:

  • Tactics: What are you going to do? When will you do it?
  • Resources: What will you invest? What is available to you? What do you need from others?
  • Tracking: How will you check how you’re doing? When will you check?
  • Celebrating: How will you reward yourself when you achieve milestones and goals? Who will you celebrate with?

4. Anticipate Trouble.

Things will go wrong. You will be thrown off. Anticipate obstacles, adapt, find a Plan B, don’t give up. Be on the lookout for top troublemakers:

  • Time
  • Other people
  • Fear

5. Change Now!

Take a step. Take another. Put your plan into action, monitor your progress, and make necessary adjustments along the way. Remind yourself to:

  • Keep your eyes on the finish line.
  • Pay attention to your impact.
  • Meet failures head-on.
  • Adapt and adjust.

Are you ready? The authors of Change Now! say you are. You already have ideas and dreams and glimmers of what’s next — personally and professionally.

If you’re waiting for a better time to get started — don’t. If you’re waiting to have more time — it’s not going to happen. If you don’t know what you need to learn — just pick something.

Action and effort will bring unexpected ideas, insights, rewards — and results.

Ready to Take the Next Step?

Help your leaders turn intentions into reality with a customized learning journey for your leaders using our research-backed modules. Available leadership topics include Authentic Leadership, Leading Through Change & Disruption, Communication, Innovation Leadership, Self-Awareness, and more.

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November 11, 2020
Leading Effectively Staff
About the Author(s)
Leading Effectively Staff
This article was written by our Leading Effectively staff, who analyze our decades of pioneering, expert research and experiences in the field to share content that will help leaders at every level. Subscribe to our emails to get the latest research-based leadership articles and insights sent straight to your inbox.

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