Think back to December of 2018. Did you ask yourself any of the following questions? “What is in store for me in 2019? Will I get a raise or promotion? Will I lose those unwanted pounds? Will my investments rebound? Will my business get off the ground? How will my life be different from 2018?”
Anticipating a fresh start and wondering about the possibilities in a new year can be exhilarating. New beginnings bring renewal, expectancy and hope. Regardless of where you are in life, as the clock struck twelve, you immediately were quickened into considering the prospects for the new year. Optimism increased. Enthusiasm catapulted. Goal setting became paramount. Minds became laser-focused.
Starting out the New Year with passion and tenacity is highly motivating, but what happens when your drive collapses and the passion begins to wane? The idealism of the new year begins to settle into realism as you seek to determine how you can successfully cope from day to day. The exhaustion overcomes you and you begin downsizing your goals and dreams. At this point, you are simply trying to survive. How do you get back in gear? How do you turn up the enthusiasm? How can you develop a better pace?
When the energy and drive to achieve our goals fades, we must learn how to develop a passionate pace and rhythm that is more sustainable. How does this happen? First, we must recognize that progress is more about consistently moving forward rather than immediately reaching the finish line. For example, as you think about your health goals. Losing 25 lbs as a yearly goal can happen as you seek to lose 2-3 lbs per month as opposed to 10 lbs in three months. Consistent progress takes us closer to our goals. If you are trying to move a business forward, setting milestones and markers for attaining goals each week will create an opportunity for you to focus on achieving your yearly goal. Typically, business passion wanes in the face of obstacles that may seem to be insurmountable. However, if our focus is on achieving weekly goals and milestones, the obstacles that we may periodically face can become a weekly obstacle and not something that can take the wind out of our dream.
Secondly, self-care is critical to establishing a passionate pace and rhythm. Many men, leaders and business owners tap out by the second quarter of the year due to overwork, stress and self-neglect that can drive them into the ground. Despite the warning signs along the way, we can find ourselves depressed, discouraged, overwhelmed, and despondent. Let’s face it. Our minds, emotions, and bodies need care. Mental breaks are necessary. Emotional awareness is critical. Caring for the body is mandatory. When is the last time that you disconnected mentally from everything? Are you aware of the emotions that you tend to regularly feel? Are these emotions healthy? Are you getting adequate sleep, eating energizing food, and engaged in physical exercise? Self-care is a game changer when it comes to achieving your goals.
Lastly, reflecting on your goals on a weekly basis allows you to direct your passion toward accomplishing some aspect of your goals. As you review and reflect on your goals, you can create a to-do list of sub-goals that allow you to focus your energy and attention on achieving what leads you to your ultimate goal. Oftentimes, we lose energy and passion because of lack of focus on sub-goals, which makes our goals appear more of a dream rather than an attainable goal. Developing the habit and discipline of reflection is essential.
As you consider implementing these three suggestions, know that your New Year’s goals are still achievable. Remember that progress is more about consistently moving forward. Personal self-care will empower you holistically with the necessary stamina to thrive throughout the year. Reflecting on your sub-goals on a weekly basis will keep you focused.
I believe that this year is going to be special for you and your family. Pursue progress, self-care and reflection. Have a great first quarter and remember that you still have three left. Grace and peace.