For many, the beginning of a new year brings promises of new positive habits and the release of old negative ones. While we start the year off motivated to make big changes in our lives, we often lose steam before the end of February. But what about those that actually do stick to their resolutions, what is their secret to success?
If you’ve read Stephen Covey’s The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, you know that creating a vision and a mission statement for yourself is a great first step. You may wonder what this has to do with achieving goals, but often, we set goals that are not in line with our values and beliefs. This is part of the reason why the goals we establish never become a reality. If we’re setting goals that aren’t congruent with our values and our greater vision of our life, we’re setting ourselves up for failure. Identifying our values and creating a mission statement will provide us with a reference point as we consider what our goals for the future are.
One of the keys to success in achieving our goals is to write them down. Putting them down on paper helps to make it more real, however just writing our goals down isn’t enough to make them a reality. We need to review these goals on a regular basis. It doesn’t make sense to write them down and never look at them again!
Once we have written down our goals, we also need to establish a plan to make them a reality. These plans don’t need to be grandiose; rather, doing one small thing a day towards your goals will keep you motivated as you see the progress towards your dreams. Creating a to-do list of small, doable tasks related to your goals will help to make them seem achievable, not overwhelming.
Another way to maintain your momentum is share your goals with friends and family. Be mindful of who you share your goals with. You know the people in your life who are going to point out all of the difficulties in achieving your dreams, but there are also those in your life who will encourage and assist you. Those are the people you want to share your plans with. They will help to keep you focused, checking on you to see how you’re progressing. If you can, find an accountability partner who you can check in with on a weekly basis to share how the pursuit of your dreams is going!
Hiring a life coach is another way to get assistance in achieving your goals. A life coach is not only a great accountability partner, he or she will also help to provide you with tools to help you become more self-aware and empowered. A life coach is there to encourage and support you in identifying and realizing your dreams, as well as those activities you engage in that sabotage your own success!
Making changes in our lives can be a challenge. We often have to challenge long- standing beliefs and lifestyle habits that we believe are part of who we are. Just because we fall off track sometimes, doesn’t mean we should beat ourselves up. Difficulties may present themselves on our journey for self-improvement and growth, however they are part of the experience, not a sign to give up! Meaningful change requires work, and our efforts illustrate how badly we really want to achieve these goals! Anything is possible; we just have to put our minds to it!♥