Love it or hate it, January is always filled with the promise of a better year. You probably start the year by setting personal goals for yourself too. Usually after a few weeks, something triggers you and you lose focus. This is because there is too much pressure around you to achieve your goals that it suddenly becomes too hard to continue. In this post, I want to share some key tips that will help you when setting personal goals that work.
There are a couple of key steps to setting personal goals that I will share with you below. In order to succeed, it’s important that you do each step consistently. Consistency is what will help you achieve the goal more than any other ‘hack’ you read about. It’s boring, sounds simple but is highly effective if you commit to it. The other key element is focus. In a world of constant distraction, staying focussed is really difficult. But if you want the benefits of setting personal goals, you will need to cultivate focus too.
Before you start making grand proclamations about what you’ll achieve in the year, start by listing out what you want. Focus on what you want not what you don’t want. It’ll be much more motivating and have the positive energy you need in order to turn your wants into achievable goals.
Don’t just speak your goal into existence without a plan! You need to create a solid, well though out plan that will guarantee you success as you progress every single day. A top tip here is to break the steps into a small act that you can do everyday. If you’re doing something every day towards your goal, you are more likely to achieve it.
Keep reflecting on your goals as you progress. This regular check-in will allow you to see what’s working and what isn’t. Then you can tweak the steps in order to keep achieving.
Many people think the reward comes when the goal is achieved. This thinking is a guarantee to failure. You must create markers for your progress with planned out rewards. For example, if your goal is to be more healthy, this goal takes a lot of time and energy. Therefore, you need more regular rewards to ensure you stay focussed. Creating a weekly reward will satisfy your endorphins which will keep you focussed for another week.
Similar to accountability, when you share your goals or your progress with supportive people in your life, you’re more likely to continue. The important factor here is that you only tell those that fully support you. They cannot judge you. Creating a regular call with them will also act as accountability where you can share your progress with them. Tell them you want their support and you’ll see how disciplined you can actually be.
Goal setting is a scientifically proven way to restructure your brain cells so that you’re massively more successful. Goal-setting literally alters the structure of your brain so that you perceive and behave in ways that will cause you to achieve those goals. Challenging goals that have strong emotional resonance will alter your brain structure more quickly and effectively than weak goals.
Our brains need and thrive with having goals. That’s why you get so frustrated and feel stuck. You haven’t set any goals that are deeply emotional to you. You have to know why you’re setting the goal and ensure that the reason is strong enough to keep you on your path to success.
Puja McClymont – certified coach, wisdom teacher, speaker and host of the SELF Care 101 podcast.
As a life and leadership coach, I help mission-driven individuals who are seeking direction, to gain clarity, by expanding their inner awareness through the ancient wisdom teachings of Ayurveda and Yoga; so that they can lead more purposeful and fulfilling lives.
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