A New Year! A New Goal…Again
It’s time for a new year, a new goal and a new you…AGAIN! I bet you are thinking, “Oh great! More about something that I don’t achieve.” We end every year wanting a new beginning. Maybe we feel gluttonous after all the parties we have gone to, all the food we’ve eaten, the sheer volume of sweets we have ingested. We want this year to be better! We want to have more, be more, live more, experience more. Maybe this new year, like all the years before it, will be the year where things change for us. I mean, we took the quiz on Facebook and it said this year would give it all to us, and of course it must be right!!??!?!
So, we want to share a secret with you so that you can actually keep your goals and achieve much more than you thought possible.
Setting Goals ≠ Success
Not too long ago, I was working out with my friend, and we had to jump rope. We would take turns as we rotated through our sets of exercises. I watched her and tried a couple of times, but would mess up and so I would go back to doing what I knew how to do. Every once in a while, I would try again and then one day, I did it for 3 jumps in a row! I was so excited! I tried it again… and messed up. But now I had confidence so I worked a little harder, a little more often and pretty soon, I could do it too! In all my 36 years of existence, I had NEVER been able to do it, and yet, without a massive goal to move me forward, I achieved something!!
“But wait!”, you say, “You have to have goals! All the big dogs in business say to have goals!”
I get it. Goals are exciting. It gives us something to work for. But when was the last time that you really achieved something from a goal? For many of you reading, you may remember what your New Year’s resolution was from last year. It may be that 3% of you still have it written down. And if you did, that is wonderful; but how many other things in life did you achieve when you DID NOT have a goal??
Here are the three secrets we want to share with you to help you actually get what you want.
1. If you must, get a goal…but realize that most of what you have done in life wasn’t because you had a goal!
You didn’t have a goal to walk, to ride a bike, to learn to write…you saw it, you wanted it, you imagined doing it, and you worked at it. Now, some of you might be saying that it is a goal because you want it. In one sense you are right, but many of the goals we set are not created right nor are they created to keep us motivated and moving toward it.
2. Once you have created this goal, stop thinking about it!
Think instead of what you could do today to help yourself get there. If I were wanting to lose weight, I would work on creating and slowly implementing a system that works, not a goal that I keep failing at. My system would include eating better and watching how much my insulin is spiking. Exercise is good too. Each day I would work on my system (eating better, watching what I am eating, exercising). I am creating a system, one that I can succeed at, not something I am always comparing myself to as I have not yet attained my goal. If all those things seem too much, then today I would put one less spoonful of sugar in my tea, or eat a sandwich with one piece of bread on it instead of two. Small steps where I cannot fail is how I will succeed.
3. Stop looking for instant gratification!
It is a marathon, not a sprint. Your struggles didn’t come on over night, nor will your goal be achieved overnight. Rome wasn’t created in a day. You will think the steps toward your goal are not making a difference but they are! It is about being successful in the little things that will grow and grow until you are doing much more than you thought possible. But if you start big, it will fizzle out quickly.
We know what it’s like to build big dreams and to get excited, and then to be frustrated, exhausted, angry, and wondering when the miracle is going to happen. We have been most successful when we stop putting so much pressure on ourselves and instead do things each day that we can be proud of!
Fail often, learn much and move forward. Stay the course.
P.S. If you are wondering why you are stuck where you are at with your goals, you may like this post on Why People Stay Put.