There are actions that will move you directly to your intended target and those actions that will give the appearance of producing results.
Do you even know the results produced by the actions you take? Do you have a clear sense of moving closer to the target? Do you feel empowered by the activities that you undertake each day? Are you left feeling exhausted from much activity yet feel like they're a drop in the bucket compared to what you know is possible?
Once during a personal development program in which I was participating, the head coach asked me to sit down with her at breakfast on one of our training weekends.
I was asked how everything was going and if I was producing great results in the area to which I was committed. I was nowhere near my intended target!
My coach then asked me to move a vase of flowers in the middle of the table. After I did this, she replied. "See how easy and simple that was? However, that's not what you do, Thea. You spend a lot of time shuffling the cutlery, moving the plates and cups and rearranging placemats on the table. the vase of flowers will move! "
That conversation was a wake up call and it's one that I've never forgotten.
Today, when I see that not much is moving or the results that I want is not being produced, I take a look at the activities that fill my days and then get honest with myself.
This is what integrity is all about. Declare one thing and align everything in your environment to match it. Actions is just one of those to align; structures, systems, people, conversations, thoughts and habits are a few of the others.
If things are not going quite the way that you intended, stop and check in with yourself. Go for the straight line from point A to point B. The squiggly path is so costly and painful. Or else – drop the goal. Perhaps it's not one for which you personally have an interest in pursuing. It may simply be that you've included it in your life because someone else thinks it'd be a good idea for you.