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How to stay on track & stick to long term goals
14 March 2015
Can you believe it’s already March? I certainly feel like I’ve only blinked twice since toasting to the New Year with a bunch of very ambitious new years resolutions. Speaking of which…how have you been keeping up with yours? If you’re anything like me, no matter how motivated you started into 2015 you’ll probably already be slacking a bit by now. And who can blame us? January and February can be quite dull, not only weatherwise but also in terms of sticking to your resolutions so eagerly it takes all the pleasure out of it, so it’s only natural that one might be sick of it by March.
Personally, I had an important long term goal for this year and lately I’ve kind of lost track of it. Especially when it’s something you won’t see immediate results in doing, it’s hard to stay focused when you’re not constantly reminded of the benefits you’ll have in the long run and why you started doing it in the first place.
Here are my top tips to stay focused:
Determine your goals!
Take some time out of your day to re-evaluate your goals. What do you want? Do you still want the same things as when you started on your journey or has something changed? Why do you have a certain goal? What are the benefits? What do you need to do in order to achieve your goal? Personally, I find writing this down helps immensely! You can go back to reading it every time you feel like you’re losing focus or motivation.
Do it for YOURSELF!
We sometimes do things to impress others, make others happy or to be accepted by others and while that can be an extra motivation boost sometimes, it is important to do whatever you do mainly for yourself. Find motivation within and you will be less stressed out about what other people think. The most important thing is that you are happy and that’s the only reason that will make you stick to something in the long run!
Make a motivation board!
Making a motivation board is a great everyday reminder of why you’re doing what you’re doing. Seeing this every day will always remind you to stay focused and looking at it should give you a gentle kick in the butt to keep going. Want to exercise for a bikini body to feel confident in this summer? Cut out pictures of fit people that inspire you (note: can also be yourself!), cute bikinis and inspirational quotes to keep you going. Want to eat healthier? Collect delicious healthy recipes that you want to try out and next time you’re craving junk make one of them instead! Or make a list of things that will happen if you don’t follow through with your goals – things that you want to avoid by all means ☺ Whatever your motivation is – pin it onto a board and place it somewhere you can’t avoid it so that you can be reminded every day!
Bribing obviously isn’t the best option but sometimes it’s the only thing that works! Make little deals with yourself, like „When I run my first 5 miles I’ll buy myself a new pair of running shoes“ or „When I’ve hit my goal weight I’ll treat myself to this amazing pair of jeans I’ve been eyeing since forever“ or „When I’ve written the essay I’ll go out for drinks with my friends to celebrate“. Whatever works for you here is fine! Just don’t get into the habit of living in the future – some things are to be enjoyed in the present!
Track your progress!
Especially when you have long term goals that don’t show immediate or overwhelming results it’s important to take note of how far you’ve come. If you’re trying to lose weight, take progress pictures every few weeks. Even if you don’t feel it right away the pictures will probably show a difference already. If you’re working through a major to-do list and feeling like the pile of work doesn’t decrease at all make a visual to-do list and tick off the things that you’ve already done.
Prepare for set-backs!
If you prepare for set-backs right from the start they won’t overwhelm you too much when they do occur, which let’s face it, they most certainly will at some point. Struggling is a part of every journey and completely normal, we all struggle at times but it’s important to not let that get to you! If you fall, just get back up, accept it (you probably can’t change it anyway) and keep going! Don’t let a set-back be an excuse for giving up!
Don’t be too hard on yourself!
Set goals that are within your reach and you’re likely to be able to achieve! It’s good to be ambitious but don’t be too hard on yourself; having goals that are too far out of reach can be really upsetting and you’re more likely to give up on them. If it helps set yourself smaller goals that will all help you to achieve your long term goal in the end. The sense of achievement you get every time you achieve one of those small goals will be the best motivation ever!
That said, don’t be afraid to have high ambitions! As long as you’re having fun on the way there’s nothing wrong with pushing yourself to your limits every once in a while! Stepping out of your comfort zone and succeeding at things you never thought you could do will give you an amazing confidence boost and you’ll be so motivated to keep going!
Do nothing that doesn’t give you at least a bit of pleasure! Sure, working through a humongous pile of paper work is never fun but if you see absolutely no sense at all in doing it then you should question your goals! In the end, you will only stick to things that you benefit from, enjoy doing and that make you happy. Always keep that in mind!
Hopefully these tips will help you achieve whatever you’ve set your mind on – keep going, you’re on the right way!
PS. Do check out my blog for more helpful tips ☺
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