My Top 5 Tips for Creating Goals

It’s that time of year again. 2018 is soon upon us and everyone will be starting to make their New Year’s Resolutions, their goals for the new year of how they’ll change and what they’ll do. Don’t get me wrong, I am all for people making goals and achieving them, I myself am doing the same thing. However, I think that most people don’t know how to go about creating realistic goals that they can stick to as the year passes on. I mean you all have heard the jokes…and if you haven’t, see the memes below.

It’s funny, but true. But I don’t think it has to be this way. That’s why I want to share with you my top 5 tips for creating goals in hopes of encouraging you to write good goals that you’ll be able to actually plan, work for, and achieve!

1. See Goals Simplistically

If you view your resolutions for yourself as a daunting task or a huge deal, you’re likely going to quit out of fear. This also means that New Year’s Resolutions don’t have to only start January 1st. I am a firm believer that you don’t have to wait until the end of one year/beginning of the next to make a positive change in your life. However, if you make a big deal about your goals being New Year’s, you’re going to think you have to wait around until the next year to start them. Instead, think of your goals as just that…simply goals for you to achieve in the coming year, not only to start during a certain period. Also, seeing your goals simplistically voids the all-or-nothing principle, where if you mess up on just one tiny part of your goal you’re done for the year. WRONG! It’s not a big deal if you mess up because goals are just a work in progress for you to work on piece-by-piece all year-long. If you mess up, simply get back on track or start over–even if that means it’s August. Bottom line: Don’t make too big a deal out of your goals.

2. Make Them Realistic and Specific

This is probably my most important tip. All too often people make resolutions; however, they make them so unrealistic that they soon get discouraged and quit. Making realistic goals is so important to actually sticking to what you said you were going to do. What exactly is realistic is going to depend on the goal, the situation, your resources and past experiences, etc.  Also, creating specific goals will only help further your accurate achievement–the more specific the better. For example, let’s say someone put their goal as “lose weight”. Does this mean 5 pounds or 50 pounds? Without being specific, there is no end goal in mind. So now let’s say someone says they want to lose 20 pounds, (yay for specific), but doing so in 1 month is unrealistic. If someone set that as their goal, and one month later didn’t reach it, they may just give up on the whole thing, when in reality if they had said to lose the weight in 5 months, the situation may have been better. You don’t want to sell yourself short to make it easy to be lackadaisical (saying you’ll lose 20 pounds in the next 3 years) but, you do want to make sure that what you’re setting up for yourself is healthily attainable.

3. Make a Plan

Big goals can be scary and daunting to accomplish. Creating a plan where you break them down into smaller goals, can help you achieve more. Think of them as the stepping-stones to get to your final destination. Making a plan will also help you stay on track so that you can know exactly what to do to reach your goals. For example, I want to eventually be able to do 5 pull-ups in a row. Instead of daunting myself with getting 5 in a row, I’ll break it down. First, I want to be able to do 1 pull-up. Then, I want to be able to do 3 in a row. Then, I will focus on achieving 5 in a row. This of course applies to non-fitness related goals too. Say you want to change your mindset to being more positive/grateful by the end of the year–but this sets no timeline up for how you will achieve that because unfortunately, it won’t magically happen on its own. Instead you break it down: saying that you want to write 2 things you’re grateful for 4/7 days of the week. Then, once you achieve that for a few weeks, change it to 7/7 days of the week. Then, whenever something negative happens, you decide you’ll stop and think of a positive thing to switch your mindset. Breaking your goals down will help keep you going and give you small accomplishments to be able to celebrate on your way to achieving the end goal.

4. Set a Timetable

A timeframe for your goals will help you even further to have a plan-of-action. Without a set timeframe, many people will end up half-assing their progress and not really achieving anything that they want to. I suggest creating a timetable for both your end goal, and your smaller goals that you created as well. Going back up to my pull-up goal, I may set to get 1 pull-up by April 1st, 3 pull-ups by July 1st, and 5 pull-ups by October 1st. Or for the person wanting to lose 20 pounds, set a specific amount to lose each month or every few weeks to keep your progress on track.

5. Just Get Started

Lastly, this one is short and sweet. As Nike says…Just Do It! So many people wait for the “right time” or when life is less hectic. Let me just tell you, life will always be crazy busy and hectic, there will always be excuses and roadblocks; there will never be the right time, there just won’t. Instead, you just need to get over the hardest hurdle: starting. Once you get started, assuming you set realistic goals with a plan and timeline, you’ll start seeing positive changes in your life and you’ll be able to run with it: All the way to achieving your goals/resolutions. Starting is the hardest part, but I promise you it is the best thing you’ll ever choose for yourself.

How to Know if You’re Ready to Succeed

I haven’t done a motivational monday type quote in a while, so here we are! First, I want to preface this with saying this: there is no one way path to success. Yes, there are multiple ways to succeed; however the general thought and idea in this quote can be greatly applied to everyone in any part of their life in which they wish to grow, achieve, and succeed.

I know I’ve talked about this idea on my blog before, but you really do have to fail in order to succeed. This is not saying you have to be a “failure” by any means. Just because  you have failed does not mean you are a failure; if this were the case the whole world would be populated with failures, every single corner and crack. I believe that the only true failures are those who give-up and neglect to see the beauty and opportunity in their own failure. Trust me, I know this is easier said than done so let me break it down.

When you try an idea or do something new and it doesn’t work, you haven’t failed–you’ve simply found out that you must try another way. Every failure you may encounter is just bringing you one step closer to that goal, that dream, that success story. If you look at every defeat or failure in this way, then you should no longer be afriad to try something new or start a new task, job, etc. because you know that it’s going to take you one of two ways–both paths leading to the same destination: ultimate success. Very rarely does anyone succeed the first time (if at first you don’t succeed, try, try again anyone?) it’s only after numerous trial-and-error that they find the path to reach success. This is the opportunity waiting to be found in failure.

Okay so now you know all this information, but knowing is only half the battle. Just like anything in life, simply knowing how to do something or information won’t do anything until you actually put it into action and do it. So the other half is accepting and applying this to your life. That will let you know if you’re ready to succeed or not. Just as the quote says if you aren’t willing to fail, you aren’t ready to succeed. And if you look back at what we just talked about, this makes sense.

Failure is the path to growth, for along the way you learn from each mistake/defeat, and grow stronger, and overcome continuing towards achieving your goals. So if you aren’t ready or willing to fail, you won’t ever get on the path to success. But more than that, I think, that if you aren’t willing (whether physically, emotionally, mentally) to make mistakes or fail a few times, then you actually aren’t ready to handle and take on the path to success or what success will bring. You have to want to succeed more than any feel of failure, doubt, defeat, etc., and when you’re willing to face those failures, then you’re ready to succeed.

What if I’m not ready or willing to fail? Honestly, that’s okay and it takes a lot to even admit that to yourself. You won’t be ready to succeed at everything at every point in your life, there will many different stages of your life.  I’ll admit it: there are parts of my life right now that I thought I wanted to succeed and I still do, but after reading this quote I realize that I am not ready to. There are areas that I am still terrified to fail in and I’m not sure I’m ready to full-on tackle the willingness to fail, so I now realize I am not ready to succeed yet. This doesn’t mean that I don’t want to succeed or won’t ever, it just means I have bigger things to work on right now. And that’s okay!! If you do feel like this, instead work on figuring out the reasons why you’re not willing to fail, and combatting those. Work on overcoming the fear and accepting the failure, so that you can succeed. And one day you will.

If you want to succeed bad enough, you will eventually realize and accept and be willing to fail so that you can find the right path and achieve success. It’s not a quick-fix, a short journey, or an easy process, but even if I am not ready to fail yet, I sure as heck am not ready to give-up either. And that’s what I think is important. Even if you aren’t ready to succeed by failing yet, if you aren’t ready to give up on what you want, that means you are willing to work, fight, and battle for it every day. That means that one day you will be willing to fail and ready to succeed.

Just Start

I haven’t done a #MotivationalMonday in a while, so I don’t actually know what number it is, but it’s okay because I think the title “Just Start” will be plenty perfect for today’s post! I know a lot of people are scared to jump all-in, to just start from where they are and start doing what they love, want, etc. They think that they need this elaborate plan, or countless fancy resources, when in reality, only ONE thing is needed: yourself–okay and maybe your desire. You just have to start.

I think this quote perfectly sums up the equation for success–however you may define that for yourself.  Let me break it down.

Start where you are. In order to get where you want to be, the only place you can start is right where you are. It doesn’t make sense to spend time trying to get to a better or different place, because you’re just wasting time, energy, and resources going from that “new” place to where you want to be. By trying to become better first, you’re going to start heading there anyway so might as well commit from the start and go on, full-speed ahead!

Use what you have. Most resources are limited, you must do what you can to make the most of what you have. I know and have seen many people try to gather as much info as possible, or buy everything they’ll need to succeed, only to watch themselves not get very far. There is no special thing that everyone must have to succeed or get where you want to go; so stop spending the time, money, and energy trying to obtain those resources that aren’t going to help you. Instead use the time, money, resources, tools, opportunities, etc. that you’ve got to your advantage to propel you forward rather than losing valuable time trying to buy the next big thing. Now granted, yes there are times when you certainly need something to get you somewhere (equipment, training, etc.), BUT most of the time the other little parts come from using what you’ve already got. You see, the key isn’t to have the most, it’s to make the most of what you have.

Do what you can. Not everybody can do everything, we all have our special skills, passions, abilities, and talents. Which makes sense because if we were all the same that would be boring, there would be no uniqueness or differentiation in the world! So instead of trying to be someone else, or do something that you know you can’t do, focus your energy and time on doing what you can and being who you are. This isn’t to say that you’ll never be able to get to a certain level of doing something that you want to, it just means that in this current moment it is not attainable for you whether that be due to physical conditions, financial reasons, situational issues, etc. People often do damage to their lives by struggling and striving so hard to do something they just can’t. Instead, set your goals and end sight on that task, and do what you can right now to reach that end destination! Your situation and life is unique to you, you have special things that only you can do so do everything you can so that one day you can do what you once couldn’t or thought you couldn’t do.

I know it can be hard to do all these things because we want to plan, to have all the answers and get everything situated out. But, life isn’t always like that–in fact, it rarely is! Instead of saying you’re going to plan to do something or talking about it, just START doing it! Focus and do what you can, with what you have, right from where you are. I promise that you will be happy, successful, healthy, and living a life you love. You will be Beyoutifully Healthy!

The Importance of Attitude

Recently, I’ve been aiming to do an hour of personal development a day. I am currently reading The Happiness Equation by Neil Pasricha, and I am really enjoying it. (I will be doing a blog at the end of May with all the personal development books I’ve read and would recommend!) While I was reading the first few chapters, there was one section in particular that stood out to me–and I think it was because of a quote that was in the book. It got me thinking about attitude and just how important it can really be in our lives. I know I’ve heard/seen this quote before so it’s not new, but if you take the time to go deeper in and apply this to your own life rather than just reading it, I think it can make the world of difference for you!

As much as we would like to think we are in complete control of what happens to us, our relationships, lives, futures, etc., the truth is we just aren’t. This doesn’t mean that you can’t plan, prepare, work hard, and achieve your goals to help create the future you want. There are times that you can very well control most of what happens just by how you work and prepare. However, there are so many outside circumstances and factors that go into what actually happens to us–things that are completely out of our control. But you know what is in our control? How we react to the situation, how we handle what comes our way, how we deal with life’s moments–basically it comes down to one thing: our attitude.

So many times people will blame others for their situation or for how their lives are going–which usually leads to a pretty upset, frustrating, downcast life. But that’s their choice. If you look at life like the quote does, you’ll realize that you can’t control what happens to you, so why let it control you and your life? Only 10% of your life consists of things that happen to you, the things that you can not control. So, that means that 90% of your life consists of things that you can control. And that one thing you can control is your reaction!!

If you choose to let your circumstances control you and always react poorly no matter the situation, then you’re going to continue attracting those kinds of situations in your life. But, if you choose to stay positive and grateful, and see the joy and good things in every situation (especially the bad ones), then you will start to have a new outlook on life, a new perspective, and quite honestly a new life! It’s okay to be upset or disappointed by certain circumstances or things that happen, it’s human nature! But what’s not okay is going around blaming everything, throwing a tantrum and letting those things take over your life. You can’t control it so why let it get to you? Think of it this way: you buy a few lottery tickets just for fun. You obviously can’t control who wins the lottery, right? So if you don’t win why would you go around sulking, hating life, blaming your neighbor or your stupid boss or the fact that you could only buy 2 instead of 3 tickets, and ultimately just reacting so poorly to it? You might be a tiny bit sad, but you wouldn’t do those things right, that would be a little much! Same thing applies to daily occurrences in life! Think about that.

This is exactly why attitude is so important. You can make or break a situation or even the course of your life all just by how you react to something out of your control. Heck, even if it was something in your control, it’s just one event, one time, one thing–why let it affect and control your whole life? Instead, focus on the fact that life is mostly made up of our reactions, our responses, and our attitudes towards people, things, situations, experiences, etc. (90%!!!) Decide that you are going to have a positive attitude no matter what, try to find the good or the learning experience in every moment–that’s how you’ll grow as a person!

Rather than striving to “fix” or “change” your life/circumstances, learn to fix and change the way you react. I promise you, you will change your life for the better!