I have a sense that most of us know where we want to head and what we want to achieve. If you are like me, you have been thinking about reaching these goals for over 20 years. I think that many of you also know the steps to reach your goals but for reasons not always logical have not been able to cross them off your “to do” list. You might even know that scientists have proven that if we follow certain rules in creating our goals we are more likely to achieve them. Science supports creating SMART goals, goals that are Specific and Measurable (e.g., writing 5 blog entries a week, exercising 30 minutes a day, eating 6 small meals a day, contacting 5 new business leads each week), Attainable, Realistic , and Timely (probably not a great idea to lose 30 pounds when starting a brand new job). And once our goals come to mind, we need to write them down (“Ink it don’t just think it!”) It is also best to start with one goal but not have more than three at any one time. But you knew much of this didn’t you?
Of course these rules will be part of our positive change plan but first I need us to agree that the process we are embarking on has as much to do with reaching our goals as it is about learning about and supporting ourselves along the way. For example I just learned that I am an evening blogger. Who knew? I thought I was going to be a morning blogger. While it is a small insight into my behavior, I’m thinking there is much more to this idea than just the difference between night and day. I am reconfirming that while I so want to reach my goals, really this journey is also about getting to know myself even more than I already do. And since you are in this journey with me, it is also about learning about who you are. By knowing ourselves more we will be able to better support what we set out to accomplish, develop strategies that are more likely to be successful, and stay motivated throughout.
What if at the start of this change process, while we are deciding upon our specific goals, we become willing to take this journey one day at a time and one lesson at a time? It is going to be much easier to track our success along the way in lessons learned rather than just “check – I did it” or “no check-I failed” (checks refer to crossing things off my “to do” list). It would also be a very different approach than just trying to stay motivated and focused, which based on my current calculation lasted within me about 1 ½ days. If we are in this for the long haul (and I am giving you my word that I am) we might as well as start our change process from right where we are rather than focusing on where we want to be.
Until tomorrow night …
Peace and Pears,