Remember those resolutions you made back in the beginning of January? The ones where maybe you said you would eat better, or get more organized, or clean more often. Remember those resolutions or goals you threw out into the universe, either by writing them down, saying them out loud, or maybe you just said them to yourself inside your mind? Remember those? How are they going for you? Have you been achieving them? Have you been tracking them? or maybe, like me you haven’t been doing the greatest with them.
For me, it all starts out well. The first couple weeks I am on track and feeling great. But even that great feeling doesn’t keep me from slowly falling off track. But then I jump back on the train, only to fall off before the next stop. So why does this happen and how can we fix it? How do we not let those minor set backs ruin our goals? That is what I want to talk about today.
Why does this happen?
Depending on the goal you want to reach, most of the time you have to create a good habit to help you reach that goal. You want to become more organized? You have to create good organization habits. You want to eat better? You have to create better eating habits. Even if your goals are harder to reach or take more steps, I can still bet to reach those goals you have to create some sort of good habit.
Depending on what research you read, it can take anywhere from 21 – 66 days to create a habit? and even if we go with a number somewhere in the middle like 43, holy cow that is a lot of days to stay consistent with a task to make a habit.
However if we stop be consistent and don’t create good habits, we are working against ourselves. Once we create the habit we can and will succeed.
So what habit can you create that will lead you to achieving your goals?
Reflection. Creating the habit of sitting down and reflecting on your achievements and your set backs with help you in creating the next steps needed to achieve your overall goal.
For me (and I am sure others) it is so easy to forget our true goals, when we get busy and just keep doing our daily life, it is easy to let each day just pass us by, without getting any closer to our goals. But forcing yourself to sit down and look at the goals you have created and where you are with them, will help you pick up your socks and get back at it.
Reflection is the slap in the face of ‘you have been letting things slide and you can’t achieve what you want in life living this way’ Reflection is also the cheerleader that says ‘good job, keep going, you can do this, you were born with the ability to do whatever you want in life, and if you just keep at it, you can do it’
Reflection on your minor set backs will allow you to admit where you went wrong and have the opportunity to assess where you went wrong and what needs to change to meet your goal.
Example: One of my goals this year was to stay off my phone at bedtime and spend that time reading. I am failing at that goal. I thought I could be disciplined enough to lay in bed with my phone next to me (for my alarm) and pick up the book beside me instead. I was doing well at first but I didn’t get enough days in to create my habit. So now my phone is going to be moved further away which will actually help my other goal of getting up earlier and not hitting the snooze too long 🙂 Now obviously this seems like a small goal, but it really isn’t because it is part of my overall goal of reaching better health and wellness by taking better care of my mind and body. (If you read my post (here) on goal setting I talk about breaking down goals into measurable tasks)
So we are in the first week of March, and when this month comes to a close, we will be 1/4 of the way through the year. When you break up the year in quarters, man does time seem to pass by way too fast. So today or tonight when you sit down to reflect on your goals, look at them and see if you are happy with where you are at for the year.
I want to end with one of my favourite quotes (Fun Fact: which is often attributed to F.Scott Fitzgerald, but actually came from the screenplay (written by Eric Roth) of The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, and has a couple different versions because Brad Pitt didn’t read the lines exactly as written)
“For what it’s worth: it’s never too late or, in my case, too early to be whoever you want to be. There’s no time limit, stop whenever you want. You can change or stay the same, there are no rules to this thing. We can make the best or the worst of it. I hope you make the best of it. And I hope you see things that startle you. I hope you feel things you never felt before. I hope you meet people with a different point of view. I hope you live a life you’re proud of. If you find that you’re not, I hope you have the courage to start all over again.”
It also gets quoted as:
“For what it’s worth: it’s never too late to be whoever you want to be. I hope you live a life you’re proud of, and if you find you’re not, I hope you have the strength to start over again.”
Every time I read this quote I get re-energized. It reminds me that yes I may not be where I want to be in my day, my week, my month, my year, or maybe my life. BUT it is never too late to start over and choose who I want to be, and be that person. It also reminds me that it is going to take courage/strength to get to that place.
I hope that if you feel like you don’t have the courage or strength to achieve your goals right now and if you are feeling completely overwhelmed, that maybe sitting down and reflecting on what you want to be achieving, you might get a better understanding of the path you want to start to help you get there.
None of us are perfect. We are all working towards something.
Please leave me a comment with a quote or words that inspire you to keep moving towards your goals. I would love to hear them.