It’s a new year so it’s time for new goals. My wife, Tammy, and I have buckled down at the start of this year and are working on Michael Hyatt’s 5 Days to Your Best Year Ever. We’re right in the middle of it, so we haven’t finished yet, but on Day 1 we were coached to gain some clarity in our lives by doing away with cynicism that comes from past trials and failures, and taking note of the things for which we are grateful. In one session it made me think of new goals in ways I never had before.
What I’m really learning is the a new way of thinking and doing things propels us toward completing goals we previously thought impossible. This all came to light the other day when I decided to exercise with Tammy. Since my exercise of choice is bicycling, and since it was a bit cold by Florida standards, I thought it would be a good idea to run two miles and do the 7 Minute Workout App with her, like she usually does. Mind you, I haven’t run for about three years. If you see me running, it’s usually because I’m running away from something. I have a muscle condition that makes it difficult for me to run.
But run I did. I stepped out the front door with Tammy and started down the path with her. We hadn’t even gone a mile and my thighs began to burn. “Wait a minute,” I thought, “I exercise all the time. What’s the matter with me?” Needless to say, the muscles one uses for running, and ones used for biking, are completely different. Not to mention, I went out and attempted to run two miles without working my way up to it. I won’t be able to get up from writing this post because my muscles are so sore that they feel like they’re being stabbed by knives from the inside.
The more I thought about it, however, the more I decided that I should make a more regular habit of running and doing some strength training. It will help my biking. I will gain better lung capacity. I will be strong for longer rides. I will be less apt to injure myself. I will most likely lose weight more efficiently.
This new goal will change the way I exercise, the way I retain my health, the way I control my weight, and the way I feel about myself. This is just one example about a way in which new thinking regarding new goals will change your life. Do something different. As you’re setting or accomplishing your new goals, come at them from a different perspective and look at them from a different angle.
How are your new goals coming in this fresh, new year? Try assessing that question in this way:
- Are they SMART? All goals should be SMART: specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound. If they aren’t, you can’t call them goals, and you most likely won’t reach them.
- Are you writing them down? Studies show that people who write down their goals have a much higher chance of accomplishing them.
- Will they stretch you? Are your new goals just a repeat of the ones you’ve had in the past, or are you stretching yourself and thinking bigger?
- What’s your motivation to keep going? How will you reward yourself when you hit certain milestones? Do you have someone to help hold you accountable? That’s what Tammy and I are attempting to do by working through Best Year Ever.
- How will you feel when you’ve accomplished these goals? Paint a picture in your mind or put an actual picture on your wall that shows what your goal will look like when you get there. For instance, if your goal is to get out of debt, cut out a picture of something you could pay for with cash once your debt is paid.
New goals will change your life, because they will put you on the path toward accomplishing things you never thought you could.
What strategies do you think are important in accomplishing goals?