Five Secrets to Setting and Achieving Your Goals

Being a great parent means first and foremost being the best we can be as people. Setting a good example and being strong role models are such a huge piece of the parenting puzzle. To create change in our families we must first BE the change, rather than work to make changes in our kids.

We so often start the New Year full of enthusiasm and certainty that this will be the year we will finally succeed. So often it doesn’t work out that way and we lose sight of our new goals before the spring flowers bloom.

After some in depth research and real life experience, I have discovered certain strategies that are common among people who successfully achieve their goals. Typically, it has more to do with how someone wants to live their life everyday rather than what they want to have or accomplish. Implement these strategies and you will find yourself enjoying your life and your pursuit of happiness. You will realize that obtaining your goals doesn’t have to be painful or involve sacrifice…quite the opposite!

1. It all starts with the goal.
Take the time this year to really think about the resolutions you want to pursue. Are you setting a goal that is truly something you care about? Or is your goal something you feel you have to do to please someone else. Are you trying to conform to some external concept of what you are supposed to do or have? A goal that is truly achievable must be your own personal goal and come from your heart. This is what will provide the motivation to drive you forward.

2. Timing is everything. Build your goals around the vision of a new lifestyle that you can embrace forever, rather than simply starving yourself into a new size by a certain date. Your goals will be far easier to achieve if you make the choice to develop strategies that will help you live in a new way everyday and not attach a time element to success. Real change is never short term or temporary. Be in it for the long haul. This will remove the sensation of struggle and sacrifice. You will instead feel a sense of pride and well being every single day. This becomes self-reinforcing and will continue to build momentum in your life, leading to lasting and meaningful changes.

3. Forget about the end zone. When you plan your strategy for success this year, create a plan around a concept that is positive and immediate, rather than the usual pain, denial and sacrifice. You can’t lose 40 pounds overnight, but you CAN start eating the way a thinner person eats today. Most goals that truly mean something to us are a result of how we live everyday, rather than getting what we think want down the line. Forget about the future...start living your goals today, as though today is all there is.

4. Get out the gloves. When you feel the need for positive reinforcement, look inside yourself first. Don’t look for anyone or anything external to provide the ongoing support you want. Pat yourself on the back every chance you can. Learn to be your own advocate and cheering section. Put much less importance on what other’s think and instead, focus on how good you feel about yourself and what you are doing daily. Create a visual chart so that you can show yourself how well you are doing and track your new behaviors. As you feel pride and satisfaction in how you are living, you will be far less concerned with what others think. That is a key to success that all winners share.

5. Eliminate the pass or fail system for your life. Real life involves mistakes and being imperfect. Embrace the idea that you are not perfect and that you don’t need to be. It is not a sign that you will fail to reach your goal simply because you ate something you were not supposed to or yelled at your child once. Set your goals up to include for the human factor and give yourself permission to be human. It is not a pass or fail system in the real world. It is about doing the best we can, and letting that be enough. The kinder we are to ourselves, the more likely we will support our own efforts and ultimately, succeed.

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