You have a goal. It seems important! But you’re just not getting anywhere.
Feeling stuck when you’re trying to reach a goal is a normal part of the process. In fact, when reading anything on “How to Reach Your Goals,” one chapter should focus solely on the “What-to-do-when-you-hit-a-wall” part of the process. Or as I like to call it…What-to-do-when-the-wall-hits-you-in-the-face!” It’s hard to stay true to any goal when it seems so many obstacles get in the way. Life is going to creep in and find ways to derail you. That…is…life! Problem is, most people give up when they reach the wall. They start wondering if the goal they are reaching for is really obtainable. Why not just take it easy on yourself and find an easier goal? Or better yet, just relax and keep living your life just the way it is. Hint: I like to do this with a glass of wine! So, yeah, I’ve been here before.
In fact, I keep finding this stupid wall in every direction I turn. Sometimes the wall has “work” or “family” written on it. Don’t even get me started on the “PTSA” wall that keeps popping up. How can I ignore those distractions? After all, I’m trying to be Super Mom here!
But sometimes you have to carry a sledgehammer and knock the crap out of the walls that are keeping you from your goals. And this is definitely much easier said than done. So, after reading all the “How-To” advice out there, I have come with the following advice for you goal-seekers out there. Whether you are trying to lose weight, get that dream job or just find your life outside this “zoo” we live in, I think the these tips are key. I’m putting them to work in our goal of taking a year off to travel…as soon as I finish this glass of wine!
Step 1: Answer the most important question: What is your goal? Is it specific or vague? It has got to be specific! For instance, if you are trying to lose weight, you cannot just say, “I want to lose 20 pounds by next month.” Well, you can say that, but it’s not going to happen with just words. So, refer back to step 1: Realize your goal and then WRITE IT DOWN!
Step 2: Ask yourself: How long will it take to reasonably reach your goal? For example, if you are trying to lose weight, decide on the amount of weight you’d like to lose and a ‘reasonable’ timeline for reaching that goal. If you are trying to lose 20 pounds and give yourself a week do to so, that is obviously not realistic (unless you’re a fan of witnessing your food traveling in both directions), but this is obviously not healthy. So, step 2: Goal…timeline…WRITE IT DOWN!
Step 3: Next, create at least 3-5 steps to reach your goal. Again, be specific! In the example of losing weight, some goals might be to buy a gym pass, decide which days and times you will go to the gym, and what you will do when you are there. Or if you’re me, it might mean cutting back to just wine on weekends! Ok, back to the gym…will you take a class, get a trainer or just wing it? Again, be realistic. If you are not the motivated type, you might decide to go the trainer or class route. For me, treating the gym like an appointment is key.
Step 4: Document your Progress. There is no use setting a goal if you’re not going to track it. I believe people need instant gratification, which means they need to see some results and quick. That is why the world has Botox and liposuction. So, don’t wait a month to check in with yourself. But also, don’t expect immediate results either. You are changing an old habit. Things take a little time. If you’re trying to lose weight, give yourself a few weeks. If you’re trying to save money, a month’s savings might fill you with more satisfaction than a few weeks.
Step 5: Don’t Quit! Life is going to get in the way sometimes! You will potentially fail a few times…and buy that box of wine! I Or eat a cookie…or go on a shopping spree. Anyway…It’s ok. Forgive yourself and move forward! Just remember to keep your eye on the prize! No one…NO ONE succeeds every time on their first try. Let the journey be a part of your success story!