In my former post, I touched on three things we can do to ensure we stay focused on our goals, long after January’s New Year euphoria is all gone (In case you missed it, kindly check out the post!). Right now, we will consider three more tips that can help us stay on track and finish strong, where our goals for the year are concerned.
TIP # 1: KEEP THE END IN MIND
So far, one thing that has kept me on track this year is a vivid image of the success story I want to tell, come December 31st, 2021.
I want the year to be characterised by excellence, intentional living and achievement of set goals. I want to get to December 31st with an inner glee that comes from having lived 365 days on purpose, with fruit to show for it. That delightful image fuels my waking (and sleeping) moments and keeps me focused and fruitful.
So what big picture do you have in mind? Why are you pursuing that goal? Can you imagine the joy you’ll feel when you eventually achieve it? Let that image encourage you to do daily all you need to do to get to the finish line. Keep your eyes on the prize.
TIP # 2: CELEBRATE SMALL WINS
Recently, I learnt that whenever we want to achieve something, three systems are activated in our brains: the attention system (which keeps us focused on what we want to do), the stress system (which releases adrenaline and makes us take the steps needed to get the work done) and the reward system. The third system releases dopamine, the feel-good hormone released anytime we engage in enjoyable activities or achieve a particular goal.
Even as we stay focused, get pumped up and pursue our goals, it is important we give ourselves permission to enjoy our mini-victories. Celebrating your small wins gives you zest to keep going and hit greater milestones on your way to achieving your big dream. So, be sure to regularly give yourself thumbs up for how far you have come and you’ll be energized to go even farther.
TIP #3: NEVER GIVE UP
I’m sure we’ve all lived long enough to know that life happens despite our carefully thought out plans. Detours suddenly come up and make us change our plans or completely abandon some earlier-set goals. Even when there are no unforeseen circumstances creeping up on us, there are times we just want to take a break from all the goal-setting and goal-pursuit business. Whatever the case may be, it’s okay to examine and acknowledge your situation and feelings, take some much-needed break (without feeling guilty) and just breathe.
Also, resist the temptation to compare yourself with friends or other people who seem to have it all together and are smashing their goals. While your pursuit (and that of your friends) may be the same (e.g. weight loss), most likely, you all have different life circumstances which influence the results each person gets. Therefore, be kind to yourself, extend some grace to you and run your race at your own pace.
What staying-on-track hacks have you discovered over the years? Kindly share them in the comments section.
Written by Theodora….