Happy New Year everyone!
Another year has been and gone, it’s that time where you have your goals in mind and you feel determined. Unfortunately, that fresh enthusiasm that a new calendar brings doesn’t tend to Stick around long and many people give up on their goals before the end of January.
However, that doesn’t have to be you or I. Here are my tricks and tips on how to ensure you stay on track with your goals. This can be applied to any goal set at any time of year. Let’s go!
By all means dream big but don’t be ridiculous. It’s one thing to say I want to begin my journey learning to play the violin this year and I will dedicate one hour, three times a week to practice. It’s another to say I will master the violin this year having never picked one up before. You need something you can believe in and take steps to achieve. If it feels too big and unmanageable you wont stick to it.
Now obviously the two examples I gave were extreme but I think it gets the point across.
Make your goals specific – What is the goal? Why do I want this? How can I break this down?
Make your goals realistic – Can this actually be achieved? Do I have what it takes?
Make your goals measurable – How will I know I am making progress? How long will it take to complete this goal? How will I know if I staying on track or falling off the wagon?
You need to have a plan, if you don’t plan then you will find yourself all over the place and Losing Focus. Losing focus wastes time and demotivates. Where as, small planned steps keep you motivated. Why? Because it is easier to see progress when a big goal is broken down, and seeing progress makes you want to continue. In fact, it can almost become addicting, that sense of achievement that floods your body – imagine feeling that time and time again as you inch further forward. The build up can be just as exciting as achieving the goal.
It is not a race and it is not about taking giant leaps either. I find once I have established a goal I then need to spend time pulling it a part and working out the different cogs that are needed to get the dream machine going. Depending on the size of the goal you might want to break it into twelve parts and plan steps within each month. That way you are spreading the load through the year.
Rome wasn’t built in a day… but little parts were and they eventually came together
Another important part of goal setting is evaluating. At the end of each week or month depending on your goal, look back at your successes and your not so successful moments. Establish what made both the positive and negative things happen. Use this knowledge and build on it.
You may need to make changes to your goal, you may need to tweak your timetable or you may just need to take a step back and relax for a few days and clear your head. Remember it’s your goal and you are in control. You set the boundaries and ultimately you set the timetable.
Another important part of this process is to discuss your aims. Talking to friends and family helps keep you accountable, plus it builds the excitement. Having friends/family along for the ride can be a great help. Select the people you tell very carefully and don’t fall into the trap of merely talking about it, your actions need to match your words.
Also be warned, when you speak about your goals some people may feel they can wade in with negative opinions. This might be due to jealousy or them not understanding your journey. Or it could be that they believe they are giving you guidance. Either way listen, process and use these conversations to keep momentum.
I hope this post has inspired you to keep on track with your goals. Remember plan well and believe in yourself.
How do you stay motivated?
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