Whatever it is that you are trying to change or to achieve in your life, we all know that different strokes work for different folks, so it may take some experimenting to find what works best for you. Here are a few ideas that just might get you going:
1. Avoid using the words ‘goal’ or ‘target’ or any others like it when describing what you want to achieve.
These words infer that you will eventually attain an end result, that you will do a certain thing until your goal is reached. Subconsciously, this can have us believing that changes are temporary, e.g:
- Cutting out things like take-away or dining out until our credit card is paid off.
- Depriving ourselves of treats until our goal weight is reached – what then?
This can apply to whatever changes you want to make. Treat it more as an ongoing lifestyle improvement than as a means to an end.
2. Set a weekly, monthly or 6 monthly task.
If you do think that goal setting might work for you, make your goal less daunting by breaking it down into ‘do-able’ tasks, e.g:
- Spend this month investigating better bank deals or gym memberships or stop-smoking options.
- Lay-by that new bike you've had your eye on and pay it off over the next few weeks.
3. Use your calendar / diary daily.
Write something motivational where you will see it every day. Schedule time into your daily timetable to take conscious action toward your dream.
Image courtesy of preservinghomebasics.com
4. Find a friend as a motivator.
Who better to support you to make changes than a best buddy or a relative who’s in your corner? Have them motivate you by phoning you or sending you motivational snippets or emails. Phone them when you’re feeling a bit vulnerable and need a boost.
5. Tell everyone you know.
For some people, one of the best motivators for change is the fear of looking like a right idiot when you give up too easily. The more people around you who know you’re trying to get fitter or save money or quit smoking, the more this may motivate you to stay on your path. Like I said, different methods work for different people, and who knows - this just might work for you.
6. Read motivational blogs and websites.
This method seems to work well for me. I regularly visit the blog sites of others who are on a similar path and who inspire me with their advice. Knowing that others are doing it is my best motivator.
Image courtesy of sixpackfactory.com
7. List how your new life looks.
William Arthur Ward wrote %If you can imagine it, you can achieve it; if you can dream it, you can become it%. One of the best ways to have the life you want is to act like you already have it.
List of all the great things about your ‘new life’ using the word ‘I’, e.g:
- With my improved fitness I am able to play ‘Twister’ with my kids.
- With the money I’m saving on cigarettes, I’m paying off my new bicycle.
- My new life of simplicity allows me time to pursue my art.
8. Tackle what’s holding you back.
Think of all the excuses you are using to stall your own happiness. Write them all down. They look a bit pathetic, don’t they? Now write down next to each one the tactics you will use to eliminate those excuses.
9. Find photos/reminders and pin them up.
Dreaming of a house in the country? Find a picture of your ideal property and pin it up where you can see it often. Want to get fit? Stick up a flier for a walkathon you’d like to enter or that rock climb you’d like to attempt. Want to save for a holiday? Pick up brochures from the travel agent or grab some books from the library and keep them on your coffee table.
10. Choose a reward system, e.g:
- For every $100 saved, spend $10 on yourself.
- For every month you go without a cigarette, reward yourself with a manicure, pedicure or massage.
- Exercise on weekdays and have weekends off.
Pick one and start today. If at first you don’t succeed – you have 9 more ideas to try!