Keeping momentum on your important goals:
Following on from my last blog about setting goals; at the start of each year, many people find a renewed sense of inspiration for creating new goals. It is the most prevalent time of year for considering what we would love to achieve, or to contemplate and start new projects. For some, it is also a time to revisit the pursuit of results that have eluded them in previous years.
Unfortunately however, by the time March rolls around (or maybe even February), the goals of many are starting to lose momentum, or perhaps have been completely lost or forgotten. This lack in achieving a set goal can lead to many negative outcomes, including a loss of overall self-esteem, a lack of confidence in one’s abilities, and sometimes even apathy and resignation.
So, how do we keep the momentum going on the goals we set?
While there is not just one answer to this question, one very important factor to consider is how well have we prepared for and dealt with the challenges that have come up in response to setting the goals.
A common pitfall that I have seen is that people often set goals with a flurry of enthusiasm and positivity; and as long as things are running smoothly, the momentum remains at a high level.
However, gradually (or in some cases more expediently), the inevitable challenges of reaching the goal begin to set in. Whether due to external challenges (eg time constraints) or internal challenges (eg fears that may arise), people often become discouraged; and taken together with other demands of life, this can lead to levels of dedication for the desired result beginning to slip away.
A key aspect to note is that when setting a goal, certain challenges are sure to arise. When we set a goal that is beyond our current state of achievement (in any area of life or business), the challenges are inherent in the setting of the goal and we are literally creating a platform for growth.
If a goal is about growing, then we are not yet a match for attaining the goal that we have set. A transformation is required to achieve the desired outcome, and the challenges that arise are designed to help us to become a match for being able to attain it. If we don’t take this into consideration, then the inevitable challenges will catch us by surprise, and can derail our efforts.
How well we are aware of, prepared for and adept in handling the challenges that are inherent with the setting and achieving of any meaningful goal will be one of the most important, if not the most important element, in the realisation of it.
During a recent seminar I delivered on vision and goals, one participant shared that she became aware of the challenges that she had previously not been aware of towards achieving what she was wanting to achieve. She saw that her not realising that these circumstances were simply part of the achievement of the goal was creating a steam of negative thoughts as well as stagnation.
She shared that by realising that the challenges she faced were actually perfect for her current situation, she had a renewed sense of insight into what she set out to achieve, and experienced a significant shift with regards to her overall enthusiasm, clarity of purpose and direction.
If the goals you set at the beginning of the year are stagnating (or worse have fallen off altogether), all isn’t necessarily lost. Have a look at what specific challenge/challenges are getting in the way, and find out how these challenges were designed to help you grow. Investigate how you can solve those challenges, or better yet use them to your benefit.
The understanding that challenges are a necessary (and desirable) aspect of goal setting, mixed with effective strategies to handle them, can make all the difference in a realising a goal or dream. There is creativity, courage and intelligence in the realising of every meaningful goal – and when we realise one, the growth of these attributes is as useful and gratifying as the achieving of the goal itself.