We make progress by pursuing and actualising a vision - a dream, a desire, an aspiration or a goal. We make progress in proportion to the size of our vision. We don't achieve the same levels of success in life because among other reasons, we don’t have the same size of vision nor are we equally committed to the pursuit of our individual vision.
The progress you’ve made till date is based on a number of important goals you have accomplished till date. The goals you’ve accomplished are in turn directly related to those you’ve pursued.
To ascertain your level of progress say in the last five years, all you need to do is cast your mind back on the key aspirations you aimed to accomplish in that period and a correlation will emerge.
When you secured a better paying job, won an award, secured a promotion, shed excess weight, quit smoking, reconciled with an estranged spouse, overcame a destructive habit, bought your own house, started a new business, bagged a higher qualification, won a sporting event or published your book, you’ve simply achieved a progress that began as an aspiration.
It is highly unlikely you achieved any of these results by accident or by doing nothing. It wasn’t like you slept only to wake up to find these successes had become a reality in your life. Rather, you had them as goals and backed them up with appropriate actions. Now if you didn't wake up to find that these successes have become your realities, why would you think that your future successes will happen by a different approach?
In the same vein, you can predict your future progress now through the goals you are currently taking actions on. If you don't currently have any specific and important goals that you are pursuing or can confidently point to, it is highly unlikely that you will have any tangible identifiable progress in the near future. The progress you will make six months, two years or five years from now in any area of your life will be determined primarily not by luck, fate or mere wishes but by the specific goals you have set for yourself and that you’re daily acting upon.
The goals you set and act upon are the best predictors of your progress. I cannot emphasise this enough: your level of progress in life or any specific venture is directly tied to the type of goals you set, pursue, and accomplish.
Where people don't have any meaningful aspirations they are pursuing, they hardly achieve any tangible progress. You determine your own progress the moment you begin to set and pursue worthwhile goals. You determine your goals and your goals in turn determine your progress. It is unto you according your goals.