Create an action plan to bridge the gap between your current reality and future goals.
Part of what I do as a trained Executive Coach is help clients create distinctions between where they are now and where they would like to be in the future. Creating this distinction often moves a client to a place beyond their comfort zone as they visualize the “gap” that exists between their current reality and their future goals.
Leon Festinger’s well known and widely researched theory of cognitive dissonance explains why there is initially discomfort, or dissonance, created when one finds themselves living in this gap. The foundation of Festinger’s theory is the assumption that we seek consistency between our expectations and our reality. John Maxwell makes the point that disappointment ensues when we come to realize that a gap exists between our perceived real self and expected ideal self.
If you have experienced this phenomenon, don’t despair. Everyone lives in the gap, however, not everyone realizes it. Recognition that the gap exists is the first step in reaching a goal and ultimately gaining the confidence and motivation to bridge additional gaps and realize other worthwhile personal and professional goals.
Once we understand that the gap exists, we can choose to either remain there in a state of disappointment or we can choose to bridge the gap by creating a logical and achievable action plan. Again, this is where a professional coach becomes invaluable as a guiding voice.
High achievers understand that attaining a goal contributes to a sense of self efficacy and creates a positive “can do” mentality that is infectious and spreads throughout entire organizations.
Are you currently living in the gap? What actions can you take to bridge the gap? Connect with me on LinkedIn and let me know.
Dr. Joel Small and Dr. Edwin McDonald, the founders of Line of Sight Coaching, are dental practitioners, authors, speakers and Business Leadership Coaches who work with healthcare professionals to help them build more successful practices so they can live the balanced life they seek.