What works is really very simple in accomplishing goals. The secret of making worthwhile goals is not a secret at all. It took me by surprise that just a few moments of repeating habits is all it takes to accomplish a big task. The answer comes from scripture! It is the simplicity that comes through the many AA programs. We must focus on small steps and do them everyday. One day at a time has been my mantra since 1980 when my parents were both very ill. I learned to plan each day as it arrived and with the circumstances that were presented to me. It helps us get through tough times when we don’t think in “long stretches.”
Many coaches will tell us to use the word SMART to help us in accomplishing what we set out to do. S is to be specific with our resolutions and intentions. M stands for something measurable. For example if you want to lose weight and watch your sugar levels, you might decide to lose 10 pounds by walking 2 miles a day, and stay off sugar. You can measure your success in terms of energy, inches lost, and seeing your sugar levels drop. M stands for a goal that holds meaning. What meaning is behind your goal. Is it for confidence, for health or to learn? A stands for something to achieve. What do you want to achieve? Is is to learn to drive a car? Do you want to earn more money? R is for realistic. If you work a night job, it may not be realistic to pay for a health club membership. Or it may mean finding one that is open 24 hours to accommodate your needs? All programs tell us to write things down. Make them visible for yourself. We are told not to hide the goals, but to review them daily. Write down the why’s behind each one. T is for time. Make what you do timely. Put your written goals near the computer you use each day. Make a screen shot of them for your phone. Post them in your daily appointment book. Make them visible to yourself!
Just this week I listened to Brendon Burchard and he says to divide our goals into themes. Productivity, Physiology, Psychology and Persuasive were the 4 themes. He had us focus on the specific areas were we wanted to be productive. Maybe it is to find a new job. Maybe we want to meet more people. He discussed setting health goals and ways to attain them in physiology. What do I want my body to look like or feel like in the next 3 months. Do I want to improve my diet or eat on a better schedule? In psychology, he addressed doing things with intention. Perhaps you want to continue learning. If that is the case, will you take a class? Or are you committing to reading a new book every week? Is that possible? Maybe you have little time to read and decide to find 15 minutes every evening to begin a new reading habit? In the area of Persuasiveness, he reminded us to ask others for what they need and to learn what we need.
Over the years I have followed many strategies for attaining Goals. Some worked well and others not so well. So here is what I came up with after studying Michael Hyatt, Success Magazine, Brendon Burchard, Mel Robbins, and trying them all. I found my own system. You can find yours too. Pick and choose what works well for you.
Linda’s own mix and match system includes:
#1. Create your own guidelines by writing them down. Decide on time slots in your regular schedule to add in or replace habits. Try things, change them for success, and don’t be afraid to rework what you do.
#2. Decide 3-4 areas to focus to work on for the year and decide to break down the year into quarters. Each quarter naturally creates a space and time frame to work on each. Just 2 or 3 goals may make it possible to really attain them. Fewer things accomplished well is excellent.
#3. Create a support system that will make each goal doable and fun. ei. I plan to walk to work this Spring in order to get exercise. It’s easy and doable. The weather will be on my side. It will be fun! Once I begin I can carry it through the rest of the year with ease.
#4. Write down the why for each goal. ei. I want to put aside “x” number of dollars every week to buy a bike by June 1st. I want to be more efficient so that I have more time to walk. KNOW YOUR WHY!
#5. Dump all your doubts and talk with someone about how to do this. If people used counselors for nothing more than being successful in accomplishment their goals, they would be so happy!
#6. Make it simple and doable by preparing. Plan each day and review your plans the night before. Gather what you will need ahead of time. ei. Packing you gym clothes into the car. Preparing your lunch. Making a list of the people you need to call the next day. Prepare.
This takes me to the summary of making goals work. Whatever you decide to do or whatever habits you are trying to break and replace, take one step each day. If you are quitting the habit of drinking wine, then decide each day to avoid wine. If you are convinced you need exercise, get up and select what you will do that day. ei. I will walk around the mall 6 times, or I will go to the YMCA for a swim today. Make it simple and doable. Make yourself accountable to a friend. Be competitive with yourself.
Good luck. Take the one step that will put you on the escalator of success! (Linda’s Own)