The new year has started and many people start with good intentions and it is a fact that many people do not live up to these good intentions. Everyone has goals, but how are you going to achieve those goals? How do you stay motivated and why do we often end with the first setback? Especially to the latter, I was very curious so I decided to go for research for Body, Mind and Guilty Pleasures (our TV program on Ziggo Sport).
What the hell
I’ve never had problems setting goals, but what I did struggle with in the past was the ‘ What the hell effect‘ –which always came back. Maybe you recognize it: for example, you have decided to eat healthier and have been busy for a while until you eat a piece of chocolate and you feel that you have failed. Then the whole bar has to be put on, and if you have it then you can just as well eat whatever you have in your home because it does not matter anymore. You know at that moment that it is not smart, but it happens. How is that?
Why do we get off?
It has been scientifically proven that setting a goal far into the future makes you more likely to fail (1). This is because we want something, but we do not think about how exactly we want to achieve this. When we do this, we really imagine what it would be like to achieve a goal and especially how we want to achieve that the chance is much greater than you ultimately achieve it.
It is important to really feel it. How do you feel when you reach the goal? What would you do differently than now? By imagining it you make it vivid for yourself and you become more creative in coming up with solutions that will make it happen this time (2).
In the meantime I have read, researched and, above all, experienced so much, that I know very well what works and what does not work for me. And visualizing what is described above, I think works very well. I liked to read what I already feel all this time, so it has actually been proven! Of course, it does not only stay with visualization, you will also have to take real steps to achieve your goals. Also being motivated alone is unfortunately not enough. Motivating and controlling yourself costs effort and mental energy, and just like a muscle, your self-control can become exhausted (3). It has even been proven that if you have had to resist a lot of temptations during the day (to keep the example of healthy eating), the chances of losing your goal in the evening and having less self-discipline are much greater (4 ).
The reason we drop out is now known. Time to do something with it. But how are you going to achieve your goals? I have described below a step-by-step plan with which I hope to be able to help you and inspire you to also achieve your goals:
1. Write down your goal and visualize it
Make your goal as concrete as possible. What exactly is your goal? How do you feel when you have achieved this goal? Why do you want this? What happens if you have achieved this goal? Make a step-by-step plan. But remember small steps.
2. Be positive
Try to stay positive, even if it does not go as you would like. This has also been proven to help you achieve your goals (5). Try to surround yourself as much as possible with people who inspire you and who are positive.
3. Start NOW!
Do not wait until January 1, Monday, the first of the month, but start now. The proverb will be postponed, and that is not for nothing
How do I feel? What is going well? What is not going well? Adjust your plan if necessary so that it works for you.
5. Consistency is key
Failure is necessary, so you will definitely ‘fail’ once. Then just pick up where you left off and keep your goal in mind. You will get there!
6. Vision board
In today’s episode, I showed my vision board (see image above), I find this a nice way to be busy with my goals and it helps me visualize. It is not a must to achieve your goal, but it can help you just give that extra push!
Good luck with setting and achieving your goals! Also, let us know if you have something to do with these tips and if you have good tips yourself