Three techniques help you get past obstacles—including (sometimes) yourself.

We all have goals we want to achieve and dreams we want to make a reality. I am here to tell you something that is both motivating and devastating at the same time. No one is stopping you from achieving your dreams. If you don’t stop yourself, no one can stop you from achieving what you want to bring into reality. This realization is motivating because it means you can take action on your dreams today. It is devastating because it means you have no excuses for stopping short or giving up.

Just because no one and nothing is stopping you, doesn’t mean there aren’t going to be challenges and obstacles along the way. Your job is to meet those challenges head-on and figure out a way to get around them so you can keep moving forward. Below are a few suggestions for how you can overcome challenges and obstacles and give yourself the best chance to achieve the life you have always wanted.

1. Begin with the end in mind

“Begin with the end in mind. Start with the end outcomes and work backwards to make your dreams possible.” —Wayne Dyer

You have to know where you are going in order to design your life around you to get to where you are trying to go. On a flight from New York to San Francisco, the plane will make thousands of small course corrections. Without a final destination in mind, you could end up thousands of miles off course. If you keep the end in mind, each adjustment and course correction leads you closer to your goal.

To make the change and design your life, start each day understanding exactly what you are designing for.

2. Keep moving forward

“You are what you repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit.” —Aristotle

So what’s the next play? Whoever you thought you were or created yourself to be up to this point can be changed. Analyze what you have done so far and adjust as needed, and align your new course of action to the outcomes you want to achieve. Remember, you cannot be stopped if you don’t stop yourself.

The key is to keep moving forward. If things don’t go your way … so what, move on. If things are going well … so what, keep moving forward. One of the biggest skills from mental training is your ability to move forward no matter what. Good or bad, you just keep moving. As you recreate your life, just keep moving.

3. Shape your environment, then let it shape you

“You are a product of your environment. So choose the environment that will best develop you toward your objective. Analyze your life in terms of its environment.” —W. Clement Stone

Your environment has a powerful effect on your life. People, places and things impact you each and every day. Don’t let your dreams fall to chance. Take control over your environment.

This month, see if you can reshape your environment. Find one person you can spend more time with that will challenge you to grow and expand in the direction of your dreams. Also, readjust your home and work environment to make good habits easier and bad habits harder. Finally, notice what triggers you to take action toward your goals and what triggers you to do things that take you further from your goals. Add more positive triggers and remove the negative ones. If you want to learn more about how to design your environment, check out the work of BJ Fogg, Ph.D.

Designing your life doesn’t need to be a daunting task. Start where you are and begin moving in the direction of your dreams. To become the person you want to become, begin with the end in mind, keep moving forward and put some effort into your environment. Putting energy into your environment will lead to big results each and every day.

A student of mine once asked me how he could get to his dream life faster. My response to him was to fully emerge himself on the journey, and before you know it, you will have arrived at your destination. I began my journey as a mental skills coach 15 years ago. I knew I wanted to work with NBA athletes, so I treated every athlete like they were a pro and fully committed to the work. Now in my late 30s, I not only work with NBA athletes, but I also work with the top draft picks each year. I am living my dream life because I refused to stop myself.

So keep showing up. Keep training. Keep taking action. If you don’t stop yourself, you cannot be stopped.

Photo credits: Orlando Florin Rosu, bernardbodo, biker3, Adobe Stock