My Mission President is a great teacher. The other day, he was helping a group of missionaries learn how to better set goals for themselves. He came up with a great analogy that had to do with sports, so it's awesome. It makes sense though. As I have tried to apply it in my own life, I have seen improvement in the goals I set.
President is a golfer. I've golfed a little, I started to get in to it before I left Utah. He related goals to golf. When many golfers arrive at the course, they head over to the practice green to fine-tune their technique and get a good warmup before beginning their round. I have been victim of this, but he pointed out how many golfers will start far out from the cup at the very beginning, then they proceed to practice extremely long shots--with little success. What a experienced golfer will do will start close, then work their way out as they make more and more putts.
Goal setting is the same. We cannot start from so far away that we have little or no hope of accomplishing it. We must set ourselves up for success. As we work on what we need to do to progress, sticking to the fundamentals, we reach that distant goal, our confidence is boosted, and we are able to help others along the way.
Look at the pros. Many can nail those shots, even when the stakes are high. Why? They worked towards their goal, by beginning small. Tiger Woods started as a small little boy with a play golf club in his hand, I don't need to name a few of his successes in his life. He's slipped up, many do.
Gospel of Jesus Christ, those goals not only become reality, but they are long lasting. We need not fall into the ways of the world as we become successful. Heavenly Father has given us tools, such as the Book of Mormon, to help us along the way. They have worked for me better than anything, and will for you to.