January to me has it’s pro’s and con’s…
While it brings with it a reviving sense of freshness and motivation to take action; for some, there can also be an underlying pressure to set an exemplary standard for the coming year!
People have a tendency to embark on unattainable changes in behaviour, habits, lifestyle; or set resolutions that start well but fade as that initial strength of intention wears off, resulting then in feelings of failure for not keeping them up.
Regardless of the above, it is a GREAT opportunity to capitalise on that sense of ‘new’.
Rather than setting a bar that’s impossible to keep up however (because we’re human and life is unpredictable) I like to look at January as a time to pave the way for the year to come.
Put in place a foundation on which to carry on building.
I’m talking about goal setting in a way here, but moreover, I’m referring to developing a strategy that really is going to get you to where you want to be.
Not just a plan that works on paper, but one you find yourself actually putting into action! Because let’s face it, you can set goals and strategise all you like, but unless you actually follow through? The results aren’t going to come.
If you ever find yourself struggling to stay on track; whether it be through losing focus, not having time, energy, or motivation, finding yourself overwhelmed or in doubt…
This is for you!
1. Negate The Need For Decision Making
We only get a certain amount of brain power each day. When we’re running low, tasks that require us to think often get passed over for something that requires less mental effort.
When formulating a plan therefore, you have to be super specific with the actions you’re going to take so that no matter your state of mind a task doesn’t feel daunting.
It’s easy to say ‘I want to improve turnout‘ or even ‘I’m going to work on my hip flexibility so my turnout improves’ (which granted is still an improvement on the first); but when the time comes for you to get to work… You need to make sure you know exactly what you’re going to do. Pre-determine as many details as possible!
Any uncertainty over what you’re doing will A- waste time, B- spark doubt, and C- slow down momentum.
Be sure in the method you’re implementing to achieve your goal; be confident in how you’re doing it, and leave no room for hesitation.
2. Take Into Consideration Your ‘Pitfalls’
We all have our downfalls when it comes to following intention with action.
Maybe you lose motivation easily.
Maybe you underestimate the amount of time something is going to take.
Maybe you find yourself procrastinating or finding excuses not to do what it is you planned.
For me, I get distracted VERY easily. I find it incredibly difficult not to let my mind drift to other things I could or perhaps should be doing, or other ways of doing the thing I’m currently doing, or even remembering what it is I started doing!
If you’re not sure, then think about previous experiences…
What is it that made you veer away from the path you’d set out?
What could you have done to prevent it or help yourself get back on track?
Perhaps even think about a time where you may have seen something through to the end…
What was different about it?
What do you think it was that kept you consistent?
Do a little self-evaluation, and apply your findings to help you cultivate the discipline you need.
Nobody is without bad habits, and we’re hardwired as humans to resist change… So don’t blame yourself or get stressed out, simply try another tack and keep filling in the gaps until you find what works for you!
3. Remind Yourself Of Your WHY
Motivation is a massive part of sticking to any plan…
You may still have the intention of doing something; know that you should be doing it, but feeling compelled to do it is entirely different.
The first two points here will help minimise a lot of that decrease in ‘oomph’ and aid you in taking action anyway; but sometimes you may still find yourself questioning the point or taking the foot off the accelerator.
That’s where connecting with the root purpose behind what you’re doing is vital.
Knowing in the grand scheme of things why you’re doing something and what makes it more important than anything else.
It takes effort to keep something at the top of your awareness, so put measures in place to remind yourself of your vision, and re-assert how what you do today is going to make future you grateful.
The path to success is never going to be without challenges, both internal and external. So just remember this January that you don’t need to have a miraculous month; instead you can use that heightened motivation to your advantage by setting yourself up for steady progress…
The old fable of The Hare and the Tortoise is famous for a reason!
Be sure to take into account the above when planning out your year, and you’ll be well on your way to staying on the right track to achieving your dreams <3