How are those big new plans you’ve decided for yourself working out for you so far? Still on the right path? Great. Losing some motivation? Oh no. Already quit? That’s not good.
Getting started is the easy part. We’ve started so many times to achieve goals or form a new habit. The hardest part is finishing what we’ve started. At the end of the year, are you going to be better off than you are now or getting ready to make the same New Year’s resolutions?
Here are ten ways to make sure you stick to your big goals for the year.
1. Don’t call them resolutions
A friend of mine posted on her Facebook that she has been doing really bad with her New Year’s resolution of cursing. In fact, she felt like she was cursing more than normal. I replied that she should have made a resolution to curse more, then she wouldn’t be cursing at all.
That’s how resolutions usually turn out. Whatever we set out to do, the opposite will happen, which is not the result we’re aiming for.
I stopped making resolutions a long time ago. Before I would make them and quit after a month like the 99%. I’m not a fan of the word anymore cause of how we treat resolutions. We treat them like crap. When I now hear people making resolutions, I view it as a feeble attempt making a change in their life.
A resolution is a decision to do something. That’s it. It’s just an idea in your mind to want to make a change. It sounds so weak. I wish we could all just decide to do something, and we’d do it forever. It doesn’t work that way though. We face challenges. We lose motivation. We give up.
So instead of calling them resolutions, call them goals and treat them as more than just a decision. There needs to be a plan of action and a way to ensure you don’t give up after the first month.
One ways to stick with your goals is to make them public. When you tell others about what you intend to do, it puts pressure on you to keep working at it.
You could also find an accountability partner to check up on your progress once a week or bi-weekly. Do it over coffee, over Skype, the phone, or email. You could be each other’s accountability partner, which would be even better. Just go over what went well that week and what didn’t. Then state what you will achieve for that next week.
What’s the punishment for not doing it? You both could come up with a punishment or just knowing that you didn’t accomplish what you said you could can be punishment enough.
3. Put your money where your mouth is
Aren’t the two biggest motivating factors in life money and sex? I could be wrong, but both definitely make people do crazy things.
One way to make sure you follow through with your goals is to put some money on the line.
There are a couple ways you could do it.
Let’s say you have a goal of running four days a week for a minimum of thirty minutes each time. Set aside an amount of money that if you lost it, it wouldn’t be cool. Everyone has a different amount. Someone might not care about losing $50 bucks, while others will hate it.
Give someone you can trust (important) your money. Let’s say you give them $300. Set a time frame. Maybe you want to run for twelve weeks. So every week that you complete your goal, that trusted person will give you $25 back ($300/12 weeks = $25 each week). If you run less than four times (no excuses allowed) that person keeps $25. Then the next week you start over and it’ll end with you getting $25 or your friend keeping $25.
Most likely you’re going to have to be accountable to yourself. If you missed a day, sure you can lie and say you did it, but what’s the point in that? The whole point of putting money where your mouth is to get you to take action.
You can do this for anything goal or habit. Set a time frame, guidelines, and an amount of money.
Do it with a friend you trust! This is so important. If you don’t, your friend is going to spend the money you gave them and say they’ll pay you back as soon as they can, which means kiss it goodbye.
Also make sure you do it with a friend who’s going to support you and not try and try to sabotage your progress just so he/she can collect money. If all your friends are like that, then you need to find new friends.
Another way to do it is to give your friend a lump sum of money if you don’t do what you say you will do by a certain date. For example, if you don’t finish the first outline of your book by June 1st, you’ll give your friend $300. Be accountable for it by letting others know the plan.