How to Rock Your Goals in 2019
I can’t stand the word “resolutions.”
When I hear “resolutions,” I think immediate failure and discouragement. I think of that one year when I promised myself I’d learn to play guitar, go for a run every single day for the entire year, or stay away from red wine for at least six months.
Yeah, that last one was never going to happen.
So yes, there is something (…rather obvious) about the New Year and it being all about a “fresh start” and all that, but shouldn’t we strive to set yourself new and exciting goals (not resolutions), all year round?
When I was much younger, I thought that I will reach a point in my life (somewhere in my early twenties, preferably) where I’d have it all figured out. A point, where everything just falls into place, where there aren’t any struggles, doubts, and disappointments, failures or setbacks. Where there aren’t any more goals I’d want to set for myself.
Well, as it turns out, you grow up and find out that that’s just not true. It’s not how any of it works in life. Every year brings changes, challenges, and both create opportunities for more growth.
HOW TO ROCK YOUR GOALS IN 2019
HERE’S TO FORGIVENESS
For many of us, the unwillingness to forgive and move on is that one thing that holds us back. We “live in the past” and refuse to move on. We hold on to grudges and throw around blame, failing to take responsibility for our own lives. We blame our parents for their lack of love growing up, for being too hard on us, for helping too much or not helping at all, for working too much or for not caring enough. Well, the truth is, we’re all a little “messed up” in one way or another. IF things were to always be picture-perfect, if everything you wished for and wanted was handed to you without any effort- what would your life be all about, really? What would you strive for?
We should not let our past stop us from creating the future we dream of.
Sometimes, it’s not others we are so unwilling to forgive, but ourselves. There are times when we screw things up. Times when we get ourselves in certain situations and hate ourselves for it. There are many things you might find yourself feeling guilty about- not spending enough time with your kids, working too much, not working enough, missing your daily workout, not being able to finish your “to do” list- some of these things might seem small, but it’s important to forgive yourself for those, too.
Yesterday is gone. Your future starts now. Some things can be hard to let go of, but there comes a point when you have to ask yourself: “am I going to let this hold me back?”
WHAT IS IT THAT’S HOLDING YOU BACK?
Is it fear failure? Fear of being judged? As we just discussed in this post, success, and failure often go hand in hand. Anyone who’s ever succeeded at anything (both in professional and personal growth areas) has failed at some point. Some failures are bigger than others. I could sit here and tell you about all of these successful people who got what they wanted after being told “NO” hundreds of times, without letting it stop them.
Instead, I’ll tell you this: you will fail.
At some point, you will fail.
So there, since you already know that you probably will fail, what’s there left to be afraid of? You fail, you get up and you try again. It doesn’t matter if your failure is as small as skipping a workout or as big as a huge project suddenly falling apart. As long as you keep trying and don’t walk away from that goal, and as long as you show up and you don’t give up, you will never be a failure.
STOP WITH THE EXCUSES
The only way your past or present circumstances can equal your future is if you allow them. You may not have “something” (like resources, support, money) but you can’t let that be the defining factor. We love feeling sorry for ourselves and playing the victim. A lot of our beliefs about ourselves are shaped by the people around us. Everything you believe yourself to be is a combination of what you’ve been through, things your parents or caretakers taught you, the way your teachers spoke to you. The way you saw and experienced things around you. The way other people treated you.
It doesn’t matter where you come from or what your current situation is, or where you’re planning on getting or how unfair you think your life has been. Don’t let where you are today stop you from going where you want to be. Put your excuses aside, let go of limiting thoughts and go after what you want, even if you have to take very small steps. Sometimes that’s exactly how your “success” is built: by those daily habits, those small things you do (or don’t do) every single day. Not all change needs to be big or intimidating- small changes can make a big difference, too. If you find your goals to be too intimidating or overwhelming try focusing on just the next 24 hours. What can you do in these next 24 hours to bring yourself closer to that goal?
AND THE LAST THING YOU NEED IS…
Being disciplined is hard.
It’s all about making a change in your day-to-day behavior and habits. It’s consistency and willingness to change your old habits and develop new ones. It’s also one of those things that you just can’t reach your goals without.
Having a goal-centered routine makes it easier to stay disciplined and it also makes it a bit more painless. It all comes down to your habits. There will be days when your motivation and inspiration will start to die down, and you will feel like quitting. It’s much easier to say “oh, I’ll just take a little break today and try again tomorrow” or “I’m too tired” than it is to keep going. Being disciplined means that sometimes you need to delay your gratification. It means allowing yourself to be uncomfortable at times.
Occasionally, it means missing out on things. Sure, at first, working through and establishing a new routine seems both difficult and complicated. Once you make it through the first 30 days or so, things get easier. If you haven’t read it yet, check out The Power of Habit– sometimes understanding how things work (including our thinking process, habit forming and science behind why we do what we do every day) can be very helpful in overcoming those small obstacles.
Creating a clear vision for your goals is an aspirational component, it’s something that will keep you going. When you stop using excuses, you realize your potential. You won’t let your present or past circumstances dictate your future. Discipline, however, is what will help you stick with those changes you make in your behavior and daily habits and keep track of your progress. If you’re only “kinda interested in your goals” then set them and talk about them a little. Do that and you will end up doing what pretty much most of us are doing: wishing and not taking action, watching the time pass by. If you actually commit and teach yourself that discipline, you will find that will and drive to do everything you need, in order to reach your goals.
One more thing to remember: you can’t get discouraged easily. Whatever your goal(s) is(are), you will experience some setbacks, at one point or another. It’s never too late to go after your dreams and set new goals for yourself. The thing is, you have to put some work in- wishful thinking alone just won’t do the job. Don’t just talk about it- work for it.