You’ve made your goals for 2011. In case you haven’t, check out this article: New Year’s Resolution – 6 Steps to Guarantee Your Success. Now you’re ready to put your plans into action, but what if don’t accomplish your goals or fear you’ll fail. Here are a few insights to keep you on track and headed for success.
1. Check Your Goals
Are your goals realistic? Verify your goals against the SMART goal setting method to see if they measure up.
- Specific – State what you want, and write it down. Add details on how you’re going to achieve it. Most importantly, spell out why you’re doing this.
- Measurable – How do you know you’ve met your goal? Specify how you will look and/or feel, and make it quantifiable.
- Attainable – Your goal should be challenging, but also achievable. Make sure you have set yourself up to succeed, not fail.
- Realistic – You might need to include several smaller goals along the way to meet the larger goal (again, make these measurable).
- Timely – Give yourself a deadline when you will achieve the goal. If the goal is large, consider adding a few milestone dates to break the goal down into achievable chunks.
2. Chunk Down
When we start working towards a goal, we can quickly get overwhelmed by everything that needs to be done. Sometimes it can be confusing where to start. Once you have chunked everything into one mass, like a huge gnarly, knotted mess of yarn, it can be impossible to figure out where to start unraveling.
Take a moment and regroup. Check your goals and the steps you wrote down to achieve them. If the steps are not specific enough or you left out a step, update the plan. Break the goal into small achievable steps, and you’ll have your starting point. Your mind will be clearer and your confidence will soar. Don’t just take my word! Try it!
3. Be Mindful and Watch Your Language
In the middle of a workout, a few hours/days without a cigarette, or when tempting food wanders near, you may start hearing yourself think or say out loud “I can’t do this” or “There’s no way I can meet my goal.” Be gentle with yourself. Making changes in your life can be challenging. Take time to adjust the changes, give yourself rewards for meeting milestones, and encourage yourself. Change the negative statements to positive. “I can’t” will become “I can” and, eventually, “I did it.”
4. Your Support Group
Who among your friends and family are good at motivating you? Find people that will help you meet your goals. Watch out for negative people who could derail your success. It’s not that they don’t want you to succeed; it’s that you’re courageously facing change and taking control of your life. This can be unsettling to those around you.
Join groups, clubs, or other interest groups where people will have the same goal as you. This will all keep you motivated and on track for meeting your goal.
I take what I do seriously, but I just don’t take myself seriously. So in your pursuit of a happier, healthier you have fun. If you enjoy what you’re doing, chances are great that you’ll keep doing it.