Photo by Ana Tavares on Unsplash
So you didn’t achieve the goal you had set. You’re pissed off and depressed.
Failing to achieve a goal is frustrating, lowers your confidence and keeps you from wanting to set new goals.
It’s likely that when you set your goal you should have been creating habits instead.
Did you know that 80% of New Years Resolutions fail by January 12th?
So now that you know how common it is – there’s a lot to be learned from your experience that can help you in the future.
If only you could find a way to succeed…
Where Did You Go Wrong?
Did you set a goal that was too big or too vague?
Or maybe it was a goal that wasn’t enjoyable or even a goal that you wanted to set – like quitting drinking or smoking for someone else.
Maybe you underestimated how long it would take to complete the goal.
Perhaps you set too many goals at once.
Chances are you skipped making the habits necessary to complete the goal.
Don’t worry these are all common mistakes that are made in the goal making process.
Now the best part is that you can learn from your mistakes!
Tip #1: Make Sure Your Goal Fits The 6 Criteria
Criteria modified from Paul Meyer’s Success Motivation Institute
• What do you want to accomplish?
• Why is this important to you?
• Where will you complete this goal?
• What resources, individuals or training do you need to complete the goal?
2) Measureable – What can you use to measure your achievements along the way and know you have completed your goal?
3) Achievable – Is this goal realistic based on your starting to end point, and finances?
4) Relevant for you – Is this goal in alignment with your vision for your life? Is the timing right?
5) Must have timelines –
• When will you achieve this goal by?
• What will you have accomplished in 1 week, 3 months, 6 months, a year?
6) Outlined habits – What habits do you need to create to achieve your end goal?
Ex: Ask yourself if your goal is a means to an end Ex: need to have money to retire early – if’ there’s a need or a means to an end then it’s a habit that needs to be created to achieve the goal
Tip #2: Create Strategic Habits to Meet Your Goals
The habit formation tips below are adapted from James Clear’s Atomic Habits book.
Creating a Habit – Ex: Drink More Water
1) Make the Cue Obvious – ex: put water out on your desk
2) Make it Attractive – ex: purchase a nice water bottle
3) Make it Easy to Get a Response – ex: get a water bottle that keeps the water cool and refreshing
4) Make it Satisfying – ex: flavor the water with fresh fruit or herbs
Tip #3: Break Habits that are Keeping You From Achieving Your Goal
How To Break a Habit – Ex: Stop eating sweets
1) Make a Cue Invisible – Remove sweets from the home
2) Make the Craving Unattractive – Remind yourself how you felt after you ate too much the last time
3) Make the Response Difficult – Remind yourself the guilt you had the last time you ate sweets
4) Make the Reward Unsatisfying – Remind yourself how down on yourself you become after overdoing the sweets
Tip #4: Refine Your Habits
1) Create Small Habits – make them sequential to break down what habits need to be created for you to accomplish your goal.
Ex: If you are training for a marathon you wouldn’t run 26 miles the first day. Instead you would increase your miles sequentially.
2) Never Miss Twice – if you slip up on completing one of your habits one day make sure to jump back on the wagon the next day.
Ex: You didn’t eat healthy one day, the next day back to eating healthy.
3) Be patient with yourself and find a sustainable pace – you’ve heard the saying “Rome wasn’t build in a day” – habits aren’t formed in a day either.
• Consistency is key
• Reviewing and tweaking your habit formation process to find what works for you is key
Your Life is a Sum of Your Habits – Do Your Habits Match Your Goals?
Just as easily as you’ve created a habit you can break one.
By assessing your habits and making sure they support your goal you can create the life you want.
Imagine getting back on track to achieving your goal, how good would it feel moving forward and making progress again?
You can pick yourself up and from not meeting your goal and use those lessons to set strategic habits to meet your goal every time.
With the tips outlined in this post take the time to review your previous goal attempt, assess what didn’t work and create new sustainable habits that support your goal to ensured success.
You got this!
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