Have you ever said, “I really want to do X” – whether it be to “eat better”, “workout more”, or simply have better habits? And then what. Do you actually do those things long term? If not, why do you think that is? Take a moment to think that through and answer it.
Was the goal too lofty?
Did you not put the thing in your calendar or a reminder to get the goal started?
Was it the wrong goal or was it actually something you wanted to do?
For whatever reason, we want to change something about it. Because if you want to stay motivated, we need to find something that sticks for you. When we stop keeping our promises to ourselves, that’s where we can lose confidence and motivation. Or, for some people, if we think in terms of black & white – we either did it or didn’t, and if we didn’t, screw it. So here are a few things to keep in mind when starting a new goal or habit…
- Are you excited about this new habit? If not, why? What do you need to change it to so you are excited? How can you make it exciting and something you look forward to? Maybe it needs to be something entirely different. Instead of running 1 mile everyday to get in shape, it’s doing 15 minutes of yoga (or ANY movement in general) to start with. Ask yourself, what do I really WANT to do? Start there.
- Is it easy to do? If it’s at all difficult, we want to take it down to what literally feels “easy” to complete. Once that becomes a habit, then bump it up a notch. Could be bumping your alarm 5 minutes/day, or each week. If you find yourself not doing something because you “don’t have enough time”, or it sounds too hard some days, then you need to start off way easier than you think. Something you can do even when tired, or short on time.
- Reward yourself ⅓ of the time when completing the habit. Research shows that if you reward yourself randomly about 33% of the time, you are much more likely to stay motivated. (Hint: the reward should go along with that goal. If your new habit is working out to eventually lose weight, the reward shouldn’t be donuts or pancakes, perhaps it’s treating yourself to a massage, a new water bottle, or taking a little time to do something that brings you joy).
Once you take yourself through these questions and this process with a goal, it may not sound sexy or exciting at first. Try it out, trust the process and come back to it. If you don’t feel good doing it, or you don’t do it, adjust it. Switch things up in your schedule, try alarms, find ways to make it even more easy, accessible and inviting.
Lastly, check in with it each day or week. That could be a reminder in your phone or it’s in your calendar to take a few minutes to reflect. What gets scheduled gets done. If you need more help, check out our goal setting workshop, or book a free Clarity Call to see if our coaching is right for you!