Let’s talk about goals. You know, the kind you make and then … forget. Maybe not always. But for the most part. Because in the beginning goals are awesome. They’re motivating, inspiring, and exciting! But you move past the beginning, into like the end of the first week maybe, and then poof … they’re gone. The goal was too hard. Or you changed your mind. Or you didn’t actually have time for it. Or you “realized” it was too far fetched. Or your spouse/family/friends weren’t supportive. Or you just plain gave up.

Does any of this sound familiar to you? If not, you can stop reading. But for those of you who can relate, stay with me.

KEEP READING IF YOU’VE EVER BROKEN A GOAL YOU SET

A goal is a commitment you make to yourself. So if you can’t keep a commitment you’ve made to yourself, how can you keep commitments to others? And then how can others count on you to do what you say? Goals are really important, because commitments are really important and should be taken seriously. You want to be counted on, right. And you want to be true to yourself, right? So let’s stop the madness! Goals are serious business.

STOP THE SELF-SABOTAGE MADNESS!

Are you ready to break the habit of self-sabotage yet? The answer to this question will be the same as your answer to this one: Are you ready to give your goal priority – NO MATTER WHAT? If you answered yes, then we’re on the right track! If you answered no, then you can stop reading, sadly. But I hope you’ll stay with me for a little bit longer.

So your goal is so important to you that you’ll accomplish it no matter what? AWESOME! Now we’re getting somewhere. In order to achieve goals, we must form new habits. Because if we continue to do the same old things, we can’t expect anything to change, right? I mean – if I say I want to lose 15 pounds – but then I continue to eat the same and be just as sedentary, do I really want to lose 15 pounds? No, not really. I might think it’s a really great idea and I might tell myself I really want to do it. But I’m just fooling myself (because it’s obvious to everyone else), unless I’m willing to make changes in habits (right now) in order to lose the weight.

It’s not an easy process, but it can be simple. So let’s break down a goal together.

BREAKING IT DOWN:

GOAL: I want to sleep at least 8 hours each night.

I already know I need to wake up at 6am to get ready for work so in order to get at least 8 hours of sleep each night I need to be asleep by 10pm. This means I need to be in bed by 9:45 (that gives me 15 minutes to fall asleep). And in order to be in bed by 9:45, there are some things that need to happen first. Like, I need to get into my pajamas, wash my face, brush my teeth, set out clothes for tomorrow, and so on. I should give myself about 30 minutes for these tasks, so to break it down further, I need to start getting ready for bed by 9:15. So every night, I will start getting ready for bed by 9:15 so that I’m in bed by 9:45 to get to sleep by 10 – and then I’ll get at least 8 hours of sleep each night. Yay me!

So I guess I’ll need to change my habit of being on social media and/or watching tv until 10:30 (or later) every night in order to achieve my goal.

WE ALWAYS HAVE OPTIONS

I have options, of course.

Response #1: I can make this goal a priority and do what it takes – no matter what – in order to achieve it.

Response #2: I can sabotage myself with excuses. Excuses like: But I love watching tv before bed. My husband and I have shows we watch together and I’ll miss out on being with him and watching our shows together. Plus I’m really not tired at 9:45. And it seems so early. Plus watching tv makes me tired so I’ll just watch it until I’m tired, whatever time that is. Plus if I start getting ready for bed at 9:15, I won’t get any time to myself. I don’t even get home from work until 7pm! Forget that.

Which response indicates that my goal is a priority, no matter what?

Does Response #1 mean that I will do this perfectly every single night? No, but it does mean that I will do what it takes, no matter what, in order to do what I’ve stated I will do – be in bed by 9:45. I will do my absolute best. My best may sometimes be 9:50 or even 10 or later, but my goal is the same and I’m committed to it – no matter what. And if I get to bed past 9:45 one night, I’ll get right back to it and be in bed the following night by 9:45. I will keep my commitment to myself.

WHEN YOU’RE COMMITTED TO COMMITMENTS, GOALS BECOME REALITY

So what’s it going to be for you? Will you set goals? Hopefully you answered yes, because what is life without goals, after all?

Will your goals be important to you? Important enough to follow through, give them priority, and do what it takes to accomplish them? No matter what? Because if they are, your success will have no limits!