It’s the tail end of January and all your goals and resolutions are dimming with each passing day. Before the ball drops on New Year’s Eve, its easy to imagine what kind of person your next year self will be. She’ll be ambitious, disciplined and the epitome of grace and poise. Once midnight strikes you’ll be reborn like Usagi Tsukino from Sailor Moon during her magical girl transformation.
Doesn’t matter if you didn’t practice these habits before hand, the year is fresh and new and you’re ready to take whatever life is going to throw at you. However, by day 15 you might have already found yourself lacking, slacking and making excuses on why you can’t wake up at 5am to do your morning jog. Don’t feel too bad, we’ve all been there and even if you missed a day or 10 days from working and sticking with your goals I have 3 suggestions that might make the task a little less daunting.
Whenever you try to turn your life around, change for the better, you have to imagine yourself in a giant room. When you first start out, you have your inner fire brightening up every corner as you explore this new space. You’re eager to scribble on the blank walls, throw paint on the ceiling and totally make this room your new home. However, when you lay out all your colors and start to doodle on your chosen wall you look around and see how much time as passed and how little you’ve actually covered. It seems like the more you keep drawing and coloring, the longer and wider the walls become. How can you possibly fill in all this space?! As these feelings of self doubt start to creep in, the room that once looked so bright and open, becomes dim and sterile. Can your little inner fire stay lit long enough for you to complete your task?
I would personally say no. None of us are born in a vacuum but for some reason when it comes to redesigning our life we tend to close up and put a “under construction” sign to keep others out and from judging. We know the rebirth process will be messy and sloppy.
We don’t want friends or family commenting on the person we’re trying to let die or reminding us on past failures, and we definitely don’t want them to see us stumbling through our promises or goals. Shame and insecurity have a good way of making us feel like people only deserve to see the finished product of who we want to be, not the bumbling mess it took to get us there.
I suggest to combat these feelings and thoughts daily. Being proud of yourself while you’re in your “between” stages is very important. Pull back the curtains and let the light in. Your inner fire can only take you so far and it will burn out if you don’t keep throwing logs on it.
Use social media as a canvas. You can post about your progress, show the true grit behind the scenes and seek inspiration from others on the same path as you. Have trouble planning or don’t know where to start? Follow people who make it their passion. They can show you all the tips and tricks they use to help make the journey easier.
Decorate your space (mentality and physically) with visions of your future self.
And most importantly, embrace the person you are as you transition. No one has it all together all the time. Its hard to remember that when a lot of people on social media try so hard to say the opposite. Not only do you create an environment where you can forgive yourself but you also inspire other people who follow you to keep working hard or to take a page from your book.
*How do you Eat an Elephant?
Another hard fact to shallow is that when you make your goals for the year, we tend to focus on the long term ones.
Your giant, empty room can be your source of excitement and then quickly turn into a mountain of chores. Where do you start?
My suggestion is you break down each of your goals into small monthly and weekly tasks. Saying things like “I want to be a millionaire before the end of the year.” Is all fine and dandy as a long term goal but you would need to put in some serious work to complete it. To accomplish something that big you need a weekly, even a daily breakdown on how you plan to achieve that. So I recommend the S.M.A.R.T goal method to help you tackle on what you should be focused on. There is nothing wrong with dreaming big, but the action to make those big dreams come true is what’s important.
You can start with getting a journal to help you keep track of your thoughts, ideas and progress as you work through your list.
Since it’s personal you can be completely honest about your feelings and different strategies you want to try. This works because at the end of the year, you can look back at your past self and see how much you’ve progressed in terms of mindset and plans.
It’s easy to kick yourself when you’re down. You found yourself coming up short on something you worked hard on. So your mind does what it does best…
A good way to avoid the walk of shame with yourself is to give the current you, plenty of room for mistakes. You’re going to trip, fall and embarrass yourself. Just accept that it’s going to happen in the beginning. Go to sleep with that realization and plan ahead for it. In this day and age we all have gotten into the habit of wanting things done NOW!
You don’t want to wait and it needs to be perfect right from the bat. A perfectionist wet dream. But having this mindset when it comes to your goals is dangerous and unhealthy (I’m sure in other areas of your life it’s not pretty either but that’s for another blog post). Get into the habit of taking it slow, asking questions, researching and being mindful on how you talk and treat yourself. As you shed your hard, old, tattered skin you’ll find yourself soft and fragile. It’s extremely important to practice self care.
If you bump your head or get turned around, take a breath, take a moment and track it. Then start again. It truly is a journey, one with lots of ups and downs. Just keep in mind that one day, when you look in the mirror, you’ll be a person you won’t recognize. Scary thought at first, I know, but what’s worse is carrying the same face til the grave. All things in nature bloom, change and grow. You shouldn’t expect any less from yourself.
I would love to hear from you guys on this matter. What are some of the biggest stumbling blocks you’ve faced when it comes to completing your goal? Leave a comment down below about how you handled it.