Goal Setting

ambition

 

What is one thing that all people have in common?

I’m sure a plethora of things can come to mind… we all have a brain, a heart, some form of communication, etc. So, although there are many things that set each of us apart from one another, there are also many things we have in common…

The one thing that we all have in common that I would like to focus on for this blog post are life goals.

Now, this is definitely not to say that we all have the same goals, because that is absolutely not the case; but, no matter how much our personal goals may vary from person to person, we all have having goals in common.

But, just because we have goals, does not mean we always strive towards them.

Sometimes our goals seem awesome theoretically, but when it comes down to taking the initiative to move towards that goal, we tend to make up excuses as to why we can’t obtain that goal right now.

So what are your goals?

Some common personal goals are: eating healthier, exercising more often, reading more, learning a new language, starting a new career, spending more quality time with friends and/or family, going back to school, or making more time for “me” time.

All of these goals can feel out of our comfort zone, but that’s what makes them goals! Goals are supposed to be (at least a little) challenging and intimidating, or else they wouldn’t really be goals, they would just be a simple to-do.

So, how to we get motivated enough to start working toward our goals? How do we get passed it being a thought process versus an action were partaking in?

I would like to share with you the steps I take before I can start working towards any of my goals:

Step 1: Pick one goal and focus on that!

A big mistake, or what I believe to be a mistake, that I find people some times make is to have a bunch of things they want to change, and try to change them all at once. This can be extremely overwhelming for you! We are only human, and change can sometimes be very scary- especially if what you’re trying to work on is a habitual tendency. So aim for the goal you wish to work on the most, and make that your primary focus. You have the rest of your life to work on other goals, and once you learn what methods of motivation work best for you, you’ll be more likely to work on them (& succeed) in the future.

Step 2: Baby steps!

What I mean by this is, make your initial goal realistic! If your goal is to eat healthier, but fried food and take-out have been a staple in your diet for a while… then, I wouldn’t necessarily recommend “quitting” junk food cold turkey. I believe the best approach is to slowly start introducing yourself, and your body, to healthier alternatives! Sometimes, if we try to force a whole new lifestyle on ourselves all at once, it can be too much… leading us to revert back to old habits and feel discouraged. Often times, when people slowly transition into healthier eating, they also start to notice how much more energy and stamina they have in direct effect to introducing better foods into their diets. So, let that new found energy and stamina be part of your motivation to progressively eat better and better!

Step 3: Do your research

This is crucial to kick-starting your mission. Sticking with the example of healthier diet being your goal, you will first need to educate yourself on what “healthy eating” consists of. For example, often times people will believe they are eating healthier because they are eating salad for breakfast, lunch, and dinner… and although salad is not bad for you, it isn’t necessarily something you should eat all the time. Being healthy doesn’t mean “being skinny”; eating better means having knowledge about what you’re putting into your body, and what nutrients your body needs. So, although you may be eating salad all the time, take note to what kind of dressing (if any) you may be adding to it. Are you incorporating your proper nutrients within these salads, or are you putting your body at a deficit?

This is where the power of research comes in handy! And, if you are concerned about the cost of a nutritionist, do NOT let that discourage you from accomplishing your goal. If you have access to the internet or a book store/ library, then you have the power to be your own nutritionist. This approach may be a little less directive than having someone tell you what you should or should not eat, but it can work all the same, if you just put in the effort and time! Your goals are worth the effort you will need to emit in order to obtain them.

Step 4: Make a list of why this goal is so important to you

This may seem silly to some people, but I have found this to be one of the most essential steps in my process of working towards a goal. If I make a list, I have a tangible reminder of why I want whatever it is that I want. Another trick (related to this one), that also helps me, is to write myself little notes as “daily reminders” to stay on track! Although the notes are not necessary to make this step effective, for some of us visual learners, it can be that extra push that we need to keep our eyes on the prize; so to speak.

These 4 steps I’ve just shared with you are 4 big things that allow me to reach my goals. But, if you find you have your own working regimen, then continue on with whatever works best for you! There is no right or wrong way to go about achieving a goal! As long as your ambition is equally as hungry as it is healthy, you have found a method that works for you.

 

– Virginia Johnson

Are you struggling with setting realistic goals, or working towards goals you have already set, or are you just interested in talking to someone about things going on in your life because you simply feel that you do not as you should? Sometimes having a partner in your journey can help. Give us a call  to set up a free phone consultation at Life Skills Resource Group Orlando at 407-355-7378, and one of our Orlando Individual Counselors, Orlando Life Coaches, Orlando Teen Counselors, and Orlando Child counselors would be more than happy to help you, a family member, or a friend work on changing your life.

Virginia