Okay, last week, your assignment was to dream. To come up with a goal. How did it go? If you didn’t get a chance to come up with a goal, or can’t come up with one (seriously!) – try completing this sentence: “If everything in my life had gone as well as it could have, by now I would be…” Then ask yourself which part of you is not being fulfilled currently, that would be fulfilled if you had achieved this. What steps can you take now to get there?
Assuming you have your goal in mind, it’s time to make this goal into a SMART goal. Creating a SMART goal can increase your motivation.
S: Specific – “I want to lose 20 pounds” not “I want to lose weight”
M: Measurable – “I will lose 1 pound a week”
A: Attractive – You have to really want it. Keep picturing yourself wearing a bathing suit this summer. How happy will you feel when you achieve this goal?
R: Realistic – “I will exercise 30 minutes 3 times a week” or “1 pound a week”, not 10 pounds by next week.
T: Time-Framed – “By summer, I will have achieved my goal”
If you still feel ambivolent or are procrastinating on getting started, you may want to list the advantages and disadvantages of achieving the goal.
Goal #1 : I want to stop smoking
Advantages: Healthier, cheaper, smell better, kids would be proud, I would feel proud.
Disadvantages: Miss chatting with my smoking pals during my smoke breaks, I would need to change, need to find a new way to relax.
If procrastination still persists, you may need to break your goal into mini-goals. Losing 1 pound a week may be too overwhelming for you, you may need to tell yourself I won’t gain any more weight this week – start from there.
Another way to keep procrastination in check is to have a buddy or partner “check in” with you after a week or two, sometimes, accountability can be a big help!
Remember, it’s good to have a specific goal in mind, but you need to be flexible as well. Being too rigid can kill your motivation, and send you downward into a negative self-talk spiral. No fun!