I have a bit of a love:hate relationship with goals.
On the one hand it can be pretty damn exciting hatching your huge, life changing goals.
You’ve been there right?
The fresh year planner or A3 calendar or perhaps a word doc you then print and laminate.
However the brutal, disappointing truth is that for the majority of us, the biggest energy expenditure is in that first explosion of goal setting and from there motivation and action gradually fizzles out.
Surely it cannot be that we set goals that just are not that important to us?
Or that we’re lazy?
I don’t believe any of that is the case.
I think it’s actually more that we either blindly follow or completely ignore someone else’s strategy for goal attainment – for rockin their year – without digging deep with what lies at the heart of our ideal and then even more importantly adjusting as necessary when the inevitable obstacles jump in our way.
Before we power on with todays show (which is Part 1 of 2) on 3 Keys to:
An Anti Goal Setting Approach To Your Ideal Year.
I have a couple of caveats:
Caveat A). My intention is that everything I share today, is there for the implementing from today (not from Jan 1st) as in reality your ideal year is something you’re constantly laying the foundations for.
Caveat B). By I.D.E.A.L I do not mean Perfect. Or Best. I mean Just-Right-Awesome for YOU… whatever just-right-awesome looks like to you. I’m also having a little fun with the acronym format again today – so I.D.E.A.L. also means:
If you’ve ever set goals based on other peoples expectations or achievements you’ll appreciate how vital the INDIVIDUAL part of your ideal year is.
For a start when the initial enthusiasm wears off, how hard are you going to work to achieve someone else’s goal?
Personally, and maybe I’m just selfish (!) however I’m really not going to be making sacrifices (and initially they will feel like sacrifices) to 3-steps-forward-and-2-steps-back progress towards something that is not individually-hugely-compelling to ME.
=> the question to ask yourself: Is this for you and those you love?
Let’s dig a little deeper with your ideal year. Have you ever meandered into the new year with fairly mediocre expectations?
Essentially you might have ‘cut and paste’ last years unrealized dreams and goals.
I’ve certainly done this. I’ve dutifully copied what I didn’t achieve last year – maybe printed and lamented it – perhaps even stuck it in my shower to look at every day… however I didn’t put the time into the WHY’s behind why it didn’t work and also the potential HOW’s of how to make it work.
=> the question to ask yourself: Are you clear on WHY you haven’t achieved this previously and HOW your approach and results can be different this time?
(we’ll cover this more in Key 2)
This is becoming increasingly important to me. In my younger years I might had thought that love, wealth and a safe, comfortable life was enough. Ideal. Even the goal. Now I’m not sure. Perhaps it’s a new perspective born of self preservation that gets more ingrained with each set back encountered?
Regardless, EVOLUTION now features as a non-negotiable in my ideal year.
Evolution helps you see the benefit in potential failures. It gives you hope that each little setback is not proof that you can’t do it. In contrast it’s evidence that you’re gathering the skills, the experience and the resilience that will mean you CAN.
=> the question to ask yourself: Are you committed to the challenge and to evolving as you persist through inevitable struggle-street times?
Alignment and congruency are often neglected however I believe they are at the heart of any form of achievement. If a goal and the actions you need to take to achieve it are aligned with your core values and beliefs then it will seem relatively natural and easy to take those actions.
If however a goal and the actions are in conflict with your beliefs and values you’ll be fighting a constant battle.
It’s why the mum to be who may have struggling for years with cutting back processed foods to lose weight will suddenly start consuming only the very best food once she discovers she’s no longer only fuelling her body. Equally, it’s also why the dad who constantly demolishes copious amounts of bread and pasta on a Friday night and skips Saturday morning group exercise finds it such a battle to resist pasta night with the kids and sleep in morning with the kids.
It doesn’t matter how much our pasta loving dad says he wants to lose weight – he’ll resist the actions necessary until they are aligned with rather than in conflict with the actions (and quality time spent) he believes are important to be a great dad.
=> the question to ask yourself: Are the actions you need to take to achieve your body gain goal in alignment with everything else that is most important to you?
This is huge. Perhaps you take it for granted as I did before I lived a completely unsustainable, exhausting and UN-fun lifestyle. Lifestyle recognizes that it’s never just about the goal you’re working towards. It’s the journey. It’s every single day.
There needs to be fun and joy in every single day.
If I’m sounding a little idealist… well I kind of am! However, I believe you need to be ruthless so far as craving out one step at a time the ideal lifestyle component of your ideal year.
Wherever you are on the scale of almost there or far from your ideal day / Year / LIFE (!) there are components that can be ideal right now.
=> the question to ask yourself: What ideal lifestyle actions are you steadfastly prioritising and appreciating right now?
In case this point isn’t so clear, maybe it’s the sleep-in you LOVE 1 day a week / or the delicious smoothie you have every morning / or gorgeous cheat day Sunday / or a digital detox and quality friend time each weekend.
These are not necessarily things that bring you closer to achieving your goals (in fact they do of course) however that’s not the point: The point is these are the parts of your current lifestyle that ROCK and are worthy of gratitude.
So now we’ve covered the acronym let’s power onwards with 3 Keys To: An Anti Goal Setting Approach To Your Ideal Year.
Incorporated in the 3 keys is the Stop, Start, Continue framework. If you’ve hung with me for a while you’ll know I’m a huge fan of Stop, Start, Continue as a framework with broad potential utilization from creating time to goal setting.
One: Acknowledge What You’ve Rocked At This Year. (things to CONTINUE)
I’m serious. Here are 2 reasons why:
A) I want you to rock into next year confident and focused on the progress you have made.
Everything counts. For example a couple of things I rocked at this year were finally starting (and sticking to!) a daily meditation habit and resolutely cutting back to 2 coffees a day.
B) It’ll lock and load your progress / good habits.The more I congratulate myself on less coffee and more meditation the less likely I am to ever resort to my old liquid-gold-guzzling-meditation-struggling ways.
So to be specific and actionable): What are 3 things you rocked at this year that you will CONTINUE next year?
And to be clear continue doesn’t mean coasting… it can absolutely mean constant improvement. I’m proud of my mediation habit. I want to continue it. However I’m also committed to getting better at it.
In fact that’s probably a good spot to finish for today.
We’ll cover Key Two: Evaluate What Didn’t Work. (things to either STOP and Let Go Of or START and find Obstacle Obliterators for)
in Part 2 on Wednesday. For now though it’s all about what worked and where you rocked this year.
Because if you think about it how would life look if you maintained all of your great habits? Perhaps:
=> One: 7-8 hours SLEEP.
=> Two: Plan and then consume NUTRITIOUS MEALS consisting of fibrous veg + quality lean protein + good fat and plenty of water.
=> Three: Incorporate at least 20-30 minutes of PHYSICAL ACTIVITY daily.
=> Four: PLAN your day to come the night before.
=> Five: Consciously practice GRATITUDE daily.
If these sound familiar they are the Keystone Habits I covered in show #170… my top 5 most effective actions that when added to your daily and weekly routine will form the foundation from which your other positive habits grow.
It’d be pretty just-right-awesome-ideal right? 🙂
Often – especially in the body gain game – new and shiny is so seductive it can make you want to ditch what’s working and take variety for a spin. In truth, it’s consistency that counts.
Consistency delivers results. Consistency builds your belief in your ability to stick with it. Consistency let’s a habit form and those actions that used to require will power will start to happen on auto-pilot.
That’s almost it for me today, I’d love to hear your 3 things you rocked at this year that you will CONTINUE next year?
You can let me know in the comments below.
I’ll finish todays show with a quote from the late Jim Rohn, “If you don’t design your own life plan, chances are you’ll fall into someone else’s plan. And guess what they have planned for you? Not much.”
I hope you can join me for the Wednesday Weigh-in show. I’m covering: Your Ideal Year. (Part 2)
If you liked this you’ll also like: Smart Simple Smart Simple Weight Loss: Align Your Goal:
If you’re yet to share the Healthification love – just click here to zip over to iTunes and leave an honest rating and review. It’d help me out big time. With gratitude, Kate.