We are headed into the end of the first quarter now…are you where you wanted to be? Or where you thought you’d be when you made your goals for 2017? About this time of the year, I get asked the same question: How do you keep yourself from rationalizing, getting lazy and slipping off track in the pursuit of your goals?
Well, it really goes back to your dream or desire. When you were setting your goals did you develop a “white-hot” desire, one that is intense, the kind that will push you forward when obstacles and laziness present themselves? We all have obstacles come up and we all tend to have laziness creep in on us after we set our goals. So how do we keep focused and push ourselves past the uncomfortable “spots” when time has somewhat diluted our desire?
One thing you can do is to surround yourself with visual images of the object of your desire. Celebrated Olympian Michael Phelps talks of putting a picture of his biggest opponent on the wall of his bedroom to remind him of his desire to defeat him and claim the gold medal. It’s even more powerful if you can physically experience the desire, like walking through a dream home or driving the car you’ve always wanted.
Another issue many of us battle when our desire begins to get diluted is procrastination. How do you get back into taking action when you’ve slipped off track with your goals? You’ve got to get the momentum going again. Getting into action increases the likelihood of maintaining action. One way to do that is to take one thing you’ve been putting off because you didn’t want to deal with it. This doesn’t HAVE to be anything specific with your goals, the idea here is to get yourself moving into some kind of action. Even a simple or easy one. You can pick something you’ve been putting off, like getting your taxes done, or cleaning out the garage! Then choose some type of reward that you’ll treat yourself to when you’ve taken that action. Make sure the reward is in proportion to the action taken. This will begin the momentum.
Next take one of the goals you’ve gotten off track with and make the decision – right now – that you will take some type of action on that goal in the next 24 hours. THEN ACT. The confidence you gain, not to mention the burden that will be lifted, will inspire you to apply the principle and momentum to getting back on track, and even into other areas of your life. Continue with your momentum by taking even a small action each and every day towards one of your goals.