Back in the Saddle Again!

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It’s a lovely cycle: get through end of year, make New Year’s resolutions, break said resolutions, feel guilt, overcome guilt by ignoring still unresolved resolutions, get involved in other ‘things’, get through end of year. Lather, rinse, repeat.

At some point, you have to accept the reality–you either need to get back in the saddle again, or resign yourself to not moving forward. So what are some concrete steps to getting back in the saddle.

  1. Admit it. Admit to yourself that you are not achieving the goals that you set out for yourself. No one else is worried about your goals, so take solace in that fact. Admit it and prepare to move on.
  2. Tell your family and friends. Have a little fun at your own expense (see this article for an example), and tell your friends/family that you need to get back at your dreams. Make sure you tell them how important your goals are to you–and how they can help you. They will still love you and help push you forward.
  3. Write out your plan. No really, write it out. The 1979 Harvard goals study asked students”Have you set clear, written goals for your future and made plans to accomplish them?” 3% has written goals and plans, 13% has goals that were unwritten, and 84% had no goals. 10 years later? In the same student population, the 13% were earning twice as much as the 84%. What about the 3%? There were earning (on average) 10 TIMES MORE than the other 97% combined!
  4. Get moving. Start today, right now. Let’s start together–I’m moving forward with my goals (which are written!), so let’s get started on yours.

 

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A last word on goals: Brian Tracy’s book “Goals!” points out 4 reasons why people don’t set goals:

  • Lack of understanding on the importance of goals. Now we understand the importance of written goals by learning from Harvard grads.
  • Lack of understanding on how to set goals. Make sure your goals are specific, measurable, achievable, rewarding and time-based (there are many variants of the SMART goals acronym).
  • Lack of understanding on the power of ‘failure’. I say: “I win or I learn. I don’t fail.” You falling off the horse is not a failure–you simply understand what causes you to stop moving forward with your dreams. And here’s the great news: by simply reading this, you are already on your way to getting back on the horse again.
  • Lack of understanding on the power of friends. We fear being rejected because we didn’t achieve our goals. Some suggest keeping the goals to yourself–I say, scream it out to the world. Let the world know your dreams. Your family and your real friends want you to succeed. They will come alongside you and encourage you

So you’re almost there. Admit that you need to get back in the saddle, write out your goals, tell people about your goals….and get moving! You can do it!