And now, is there a sense of expectation for the next 12 months? Or more like a sense of dread!?
Is it time to embark upon a new journey with some clear goals and determined resolutions in mind?
If so, it’s important to know how to do that well. So many people start out with great intentions but give up before they’ve got very far. Maybe you can relate.
- Lack of true meaning or purpose backing up the goal
- Lack of real drive behind the decision
- Lack of adequate planning
- Lack of an active support-system
- Discouragement – small slips are too often viewed as crushing failures
We’ve listed some negative factors – why we don’t achieve our goals. Now it’s time to state the specific, positive steps you have to take if you’re to create a robust pathway to achieving what you really want.
First, let’s get absolutely clear about your goal. What exactly do you want? State this IN DETAIL and in the POSITIVE. The write it down, so you can see it.
It’s often a weight loss drive that people embark upon in the New Year. Do the excesses of the festive period leave their ugly marks on your body? Do you like the results? If not, now, state your ideal weight and a time frame for its definite achievement:
It’s June 20XX, my body feels healthier and more alive than its ever been, and I weight XX kg/lbs because of my faithfulness to my plan of action.
Much better to state a positive goal like this than ‘I want to be thinner,’ (which isn’t specific enough) or ‘I don’t want to be over 15 stone’ (a clear negative statement).
Stick your positive statement on your fridge door and read it aloud at least twice a day. Reinforce this with a picture of how you looked when you were that weight, if you have one.
Secondly, you must ensure you see your goal as absolutely essential: it must be a must!
If you merely feel you should achieve the goal, or ought to get it sorted, you might as well not start.
You make it a must by getting brutally honest with yourself. Look squarely at the current state of affairs and talk to yourself about how disturbing it really is. What does it say about you that you’ve not conquered this thing? What kind of person allows this kind of issue to get the better of them? Get disturbed about the present situation or you’ll find ways to excuse it and stay exactly where you are. Is that what you want?
(You think I’m sounding negative now? This is where you can make use of ‘negative’ motivation to get you moving. You end result, however, does need to be stated in the positive.)
GET A PLAN
Third, you have to plan the steps you need to take to succeed. No real goal is ever achieved through a single step, so THINK THROUGH what it will really take to get the final outcome you desire.
You can borrow a plan from others – because there are almost certainly people out there in the world who have achieved what you want to achieve and you might as well learn from them. If you do, make sure your plan has come from a credible source. It has to be believable – both at the start and when the going gets tough. Best to get a plan from someone who has started at a similar place to you.
The other thing a plan does is to convince your brain that your goal IS actually attainable. When people get to a state where they start saying, “There’s no way I can do it,’ they are clearly about to quit.
But here’s a secret, “Where there’s a WAY there’s a WILL !” Once you have a plan, you can see that there is actually a WAY to achieve this goal of yours. Getting willpower is then an easy thing.
Fourth, you need to make a definite decision.
A de-cision is a psychological CUT – a cutting off from every possible alternative.
If you find it hard to stick to a self-made commitment, it’s a brilliant idea if you partner up with someone who’s committed to the same goal. State your commitments aloud to each other. Promise to call each other every day to check in and
Beyond that, you might feel you need to write your commitment down on paper and sign it with your own name. Then post it somewhere very visible for you to see every day. Your name, signed this way, is a very, very strong constraint. This is not to be done lightly, but if all else fails it’s a powerful way of bringing your wandering will back onto the path of rewards.