A few weeks into a new year and many of us have started in on our New Year’s goals. It’s easy to be motivated with the turn of a new calendar year and the momentum of a fresh start. But how do you really make a change? What do you do when the feeling fades and the new habits start to slip? How can we ensure we follow our goals through to successfully make a change?
Having been a wellness coach for 10+ years, I’ve seen and helped many others successfully reach goals and make lifestyle changes. I’ve also seen many others (myself included) give up on their goals and make zero progress towards what they set out to do. What’s the difference between making or breaking? Last week I got the privilege to share with members of the TOPS Club Inc. community what I believe are the 5 “P’s” that can make or break a successful resolution.
1. You need a PLAN.
This year we all hope to reach new destinations, right? To accomplish new things and experience things we’ve never been able to before. We all hope to reach a new territory in one area or another. How can we get to a place we’ve never been before? We need a map, a plan, to ensure reaching our destination. If you fail to plan, you plan to fail. Take some time to define your goals, in many areas of life: health, personal, professional, financial, relational, etc. Once your major goals are defined, we need to break them down into smaller, bite sized goals. Want to lose 50 pounds this year? That number may seem overwhelming and even cause you to stall out in action because it feels too grand. However, 50 pounds broken down over a year is just a pound week! You just need a plan. Start small, make consistent changes in your habits over time and you’ll be much more likely to reach your larger goals.
2. You need a PURPOSE.
Why is your goal important to you? What’s the reason behind your desired change? 50 pounds is a great goal, but why does it matter? Maybe you want to lose 50 pounds before a vacation or event? Perhaps you want to have more energy and live longer to create more memories? What’s the purpose behind the progression?
Think about what your life look like when you accomplish this goal. See it. Feel it. Make it so real and your actions align with your new reality. Your purpose becomes your driving force. Your fuel. When you know the why the how is simple. It’s hard to get excited about meal prepping or working out but feeling confident in shorts or running a half marathon is what keeps you committed and moving toward your goal.
3. You need a proper PERSPECTIVE.
There will never be a perfect time to start. We all are currently facing obstacles in this season of life. Perhaps you just moved, started a new job or have an injury to work around. Maybe you are dealing with grief, stress or feel like you’re living in chaos. We will always have limitations but we will always have ways we can win, too. In this season of life, what does it look like for you to ‘win the day’? What CAN you do today? How can you move your body? Fuel your mind? Build your belief? Take care of yourself? Make great food choices?
Big goals are important but can’t get there without daily, consistent wins. Focus on what you can do, what you can control, where you can win. Take your journey one day at a time as your pursue your goals, 24 hours at a time.
4. You need to PRAISE your progress.
Celebrate yourself and your accomplishments along the way! The becoming is in the journey. Once you reach your goal, there will be a new destination for you to pursue. What you learn, how you grow, who you become in the process is the very reason we start to begin with.
Why should we celebrate losing a pound, a completing a workout session or running a mile? Not because it’s some grand accomplishment on its own but because you are proving you can successfully change your habits. You’re proving you are worth it. You are proving you are capable. Your celebrating reinforces good behavior and develops an addiction to progress. The big, life-changing achievements will come as a result of your daily actions. Celebrate your small victories as you win each day.
5. You need PEOPLE.
What is the number one reason people fail in achieving a goal?
Lack of accountability from a community.
Do you have positive, like minded people in your life? Are the people in your inner circle pursuing similar goals? Who do you know that’s achieved what you currently desire? Spend time with people who support you, encourage you and bring out your best. Those that truly care for you want to see you win. They won’t judge, be critical or dismiss your efforts and vision for your better future. Be mindful of who gets your time. It makes all the difference.