Well, we’re exactly three weeks into the new year, so I have to ask. How are your New Year’s resolutions coming along? If you’re holding strong, consider this your virtual pat on the back. Seriously! I’m so proud of you, and I wish I could say the same. After our trip to Naples I was feeling super refreshed, and I was so ready to hit the ground running. I had a detailed plan on paper, short term goals, long term goals, action steps, checklists, the whole shebang. I was committed to starting on January 1st, and I did. But by January 3rd, that train had completely derailed.
[FYI if you’re looking for my outfit details you can find them at the bottom of this post.]
My “big plans” were pushed aside for 7 days of sickness, piles of paperwork (we bought a house on a whim!), snuggles with my new niece and mourning the death of two loved ones. I’m not looking for sympathy or excuses, the point is that there are a million reasons/ways we can fall off track when working towards a goal. Some things we have full control of (I chose to snuggle my new niece). Other things are completely out of our hands (like the death of a loved one). The most important thing, though, is that you pull yourself back in. You figure out what happened, and you get back on track.
Since I know I’m not the only one on earth who hasn’t totally bombed their resolutions/goals (and it’s not the first time), today I wanted to share how I manage to get back on track. I hope my strategy helps you get moving in the right direction if you’re currently struggling! I invite you to share your stories, struggles, tips, questions, etc. in the comments. I’m happy to help further, and perhaps you can even help another MVS reader!
6 Steps to Achieve Any Goal After Falling Off Track:
1. Forgive Yourself
The worst thing you can do is sit back and wallow in self pity. Once you’ve fallen off track, forgive yourself and move on to step #2. Beating yourself up will only waste valuable energy, time and brain power. And it’s hard to move forward if you’re looking in the rearview mirror (my husband told me to say that, haha, he’s really proud of himself).
2. Reevaluate Your Goals
Why do you want to achieve X? Ask yourself this question for each and every goal/resolution you’ve set. Question yourself motives and drivers further. You might discover that you’ve fallen off track because while X might sound cool, deep down it’s not actually all that important to you. If you come to this realization, consider it a good thing! You’re essentially buying yourself back some time and saving a lot of wasted effort. Heck, you’re likely even saving yourself some money! Use all of this extra information, time and resources to figure out what your truly want.
Once you’ve determined and/or confirmed whatever it was you want to achieve, you’re ready for step #3.
3. Prioritize Your Goals
Consider that you may have fallen off track because you were trying to do too much! I’m soooo guilty of this. I tend to start on one goal and then take a million tangents. Don’t do it!! Narrow down your goals, articulating them clearly on paper. Then, assign each one a priority level. This will help you pick and choose when you absolutely have to. I just started doing this and it’s worked out very well!!
For instance, my biggest goal this year is to grow my blog (I have a detailed plan written down on paper). I also have an ongoing commitment to physical fitness. At the same time, I do work full time. That said, my full time job is my top priority, because it pays the bills. Blogging comes second, then working out. I try to do all every day, but when I can’t knowing my priorities helps me to determine what to try to fit into my schedule first. This has already saved me from many internal battles and guilt trips. There’s only so much time in the day!!
4. Identify & Overcome Your Roadblocks
If you know you want to achieve something, and you want to get back on track, the next thing you should do is figure out where you went wrong. What caused you to fall off track? Was it a one-time occurrence, like the loss of a family member or a week-long work trip? Was it general laziness or an ongoing time constraint? Be honest with yourself. One-time occurrences are easy to overcome because once they’re over, they’re over. But if your roadblock is reoccurring, like a negative mental state or a busy schedule, you’re going to have to actively work to overcome it before moving on to point #4. Or at the very least, you need figure out a work around!
For example, when I’m in a funk I tend to dread working out for whatever reason. So when this happens, I force myself to put on my workout clothes and I walk down to the gym. Period. More often than not, I’m feeling a bit more motivated by the time I get there. I’ve never just turned around and gone home. I’ve always done something, and something is better than nothing. The workout itself might not pull me out of my bad mood, but this strategy helps me to ensure my mood doesn’t set me back from my ultimate goal of being physically and mentally fit.
5. Set Yourself Up for Success
Whatever you have to do to make sure your daily tasks get done, do it. The daily details are so important, because it’s the sum of those actions that ultimately result in you reaching your goal(s). I live off of checklists and iPhone reminders! I also recommend reviewing your vision statement and/or goals daily. Doing so will help you keep your eye on the prize and remind you of your “big picture” destination and purpose.
6. Get Moving
Get your ducks in a row quickly and get moving, so long as the goal your working towards is something you truly and genuinely want. When you fall off track, start back at #1 without hesitation. Learn from the failures, celebrate even the smallest milestones, but don’t you dare give up! We all have the ability to achieve any goal after falling off track, but we have to recognize our faults, fix the problems and get moving as quickly as possible.
SHOP MY LOOK