Here are 7 easy ways to help you stay focus on your goals and achieve the results you want without losing sight of your aims…
Make a list
Most people work best when they are organized and have a clear picture of their goals. Take a journal and make a wide variety of things you want to work upon in the coming year. It could be anything from buying a car to getting married, make it like your wish board and keep referring back to it every time you need some motivation. Write short term goals for the next few months.
Be specific and explain while writing to yourself exactly what you want. For example, instead of saying you would like to be a friendlier person, write down ‘Help others with favours and show initiative for others.’ This will be your cheat sheet to help you attain your goals.
Too soon too fast
The worst thing to do is start off with a bang and end a month later in a whimper. Avoid starting anything immediately in the first week of January, begin goals when you return to work life and your daily routine to make sure it is incorporated into your day to day lifestyle rather than a holiday fad.
So if you say you want to lose weight, there is no need to binge eat during the last week of the year and starve on January 1st. Instead look up ways to begin a workout or research gyms giving great discounts right now or even look into how to make healthy recipes. These are all tools that will help you reach your targets so pace yourself for the journey.
This one can be tricky and frustrating. To stop smoking on January 1st and promise yourself not to for the rest of the year is not very wise. Habits related to our body, also take a toll on our emotional well-being. If you expect your body to do strenuous physical activity for an hour in the gym when you haven’t had any exercise earlier will leave you frustrated with your body for not keeping up and eventually make u lose interest in your goal.
Instead aim at going for a brisk walk in the evening for short spans or if you’re someone struggling to quit smoking, try and minimize your smoke breaks and cigarettes day by day. Be proud for the small changes you can make.
Get a timeline
While listing out goals instead of saying you want to lose weight, write down exactly how much weight in the next three months. This way you can track your progress and have much more attainable goals. If you want to get into a new job market or are looking for changes in your career, start thinking about steps you will take in the next few months to attain that goal.
So if you’re looking to write a book make points on what you will be doing in the next three months to achieve that aim for example, collect data, look at publishers etc. Do not look at attaining your final goal just yet, but target on the steps. That’s half the battle.
Visualize it all coming together
Researchers are soon realizing the power of our subconscious mind on our thinking. The power of your subconscious works even when you are completely unaware. Think about it, if something is constantly in your eye range it will tend to have an effect on you sooner or later.
So if you’re looking at affording that dream car this year, cut out pictures from magazines and pin them at your work place wall. If losing weight is on your list, cut out pictures of images that attract you so the next time you crave something unhealthy just take a look at that image. Use it as motivation and realize not all you see in magazines is natural. But visualizing and having pictures around of your goals is a great way to keep your targets in sight and stay on track.
Don’t be too hard on yourself
We all have failures and slip ups that make us want to give up and try again ‘later’. Unfortunately, we just never get to it then. So allow yourself a cheat day for the evergreen weight loss resolution. It is ok to miss one day at the gym if you’ve had a bad day. Don’t completely give up on yourself and your goals when you face initial challenges or roadblocks. So if you feel like giving up, use the visualization trick to help you get back on track. Hence start slow and be patient with your body to help it get used to your changes.
The Buddy system
It’s always more fun to do things in groups or with a friend. Keeping yourself motivated might be challenging and sometimes we might work better with some outside help. So share you goal with your friends and ask for their support. Maybe the next time they go for a smoke break they don’t need to tell you.
Or if you and a buddy both want to lose some weight choose a gym that’s conveniently located for both of you’ll can help each other when one is feeling lethargic. Ask your partner to help you at home by cooking healthy meals together or going for walks. Use family and friends as a support system to help achieve your goals.
- Sanobar Mistry is a journalist and is currently a teacher in the UAE