Getting started and staying on track

It is mid January and some of you will have made a start on some of your New Year Intentions. Whatever that may have been, getting fitter, losing weight, spending more time on a hobby, applying for a new job, working harder, or changing a habit of a lifetime! 

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A few years ago I was speaking to a highly paid and very successful Business Coach I met in The United States whilst I was on a Coaching Course. He offered me a very valuable tip during breakfast one morning at the hotel. He said when you are learning a new habit and finding it tricky to get started, just begin with doing whatever it is for just 10 minutes a day, that's it no more just 10 minutes. 

At the time, I had not picked my guitar up for several years. It was sat there in my living room waiting to be played and I would look at it each time sadly and say to myself, one day soon! I used to get so much joy from playing the instrument and singing from time to time and it helped to relax me and lift my spirits. So when I got home, I did what he suggested and within a few weeks I was out singing at an open mic! Doing the very thing I wanted to do and loved it! It was such a great release for me at the time when I was working so hard on my business. 

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Everything you ever wanted is one step away from your comfort zone

So let's look at this inspiring quote, it hugely inspired me a couple of days ago when I read it. I ended up going that little bit further than the goal I set myself at the beginning of the week. Why, because the succinct message made utter sense to me. Of course, a part of ourselves is protecting us from getting out of our comfort zone, it says, it's too dangerous, we'll fail, we'll hurt ourselves, best to play it safe and do what we know, that way we are guaranteed to get the same results. And that is exactly the problem, we don't actually want to get what we had before!

If you always do what you you’ve always done.....
— Albert Einstein

I don't need to finish the quote right? However, it is so true and I find it helpful to remind myself of that from time to time as I'm sure you do too! 

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So once we set our intention on what we want to achieve in ourselves, it's simple, we STAY ON THE PATH! 

I read today that around 12 per cent of gym members sign up in January, and according to the the Fitness Industry Association, most people have quit or stop going after 24 weeks. Many more would probably have quit earlier if they weren’t tied up to a 6-month contract!

So how do we stay committed to ourselves? Over the last 16 or so years I have really enjoyed reading motivational books and loved listening to powerful inspirational speakers. And this is what I have come with to keep me motivated and on the path to honouring myself and manifesting what I choose to achieve. 

5 Golden Rules to Staying On Track 

1. Be Visionary 

Create in your mind a picture of what you would like to create, who you would ideally like to be. Write it down, share with it with your friends and colleagues. We have two main motivational factors to keep us doing things out of our comfort zone, one is to have fun with it, the other is to be answerable to someone else. I also like vision boards and often I like to put a picture up to keep my subconscious mind working on my intention.

A relatively simple example would be - I am getting fitter this year!

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2. Get Clear

Getting absolutely clear about what it is you want to achieve is very important. What does getting fit look like to YOU? Working out in the gym, running round the block, jogging in the park? 

When are you going to this? How many times? With whom? Is it realistic and practical? It needs to fit in with your current lifestyle. 

3. Say No to distractions and put yourself first

One of the biggest reasons we lose sight of our goals and intentions is because of interruptions and distractions. Make an appointment with yourself and stick to it. After all you would think twice about cancelling an appointment with your best friend once booked or a business partner or client. You are just as important, or dare I say more important!

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4. Give it time 

Most of us appreciate that in order to build a new habit and sustain it we need to be doing it regularly for at least 28 days, a common guide we recognise. But what if we don't and we get off track during that time? Things take time. Just as long as we do get back to it and we leave the 'critical mind' out of it. 5 steps forward 7 steps back......Ok that's resilience! Fall off, get back up! Next time 5 steps forward, 2 steps back! Every step forward makes a difference. So Relax about it.

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5. Reward Yourself 

Celebrate your achievements, however small the steps may seem to you. You got started and you made progress. How you reward yourself and give yourself a pat on the back is entirely up to you. One thing is for sure we do not do this enough with ourselves.

For me, writing down what I have achieved each day just before I go to bed works. Also remembering to share my achievements with my friends and family and receiving further encouragement from them is helpful. In sharing we also inspire them to do the same for themselves.  

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5 golden rules is all it takes to achieve what we want in 2018!

Let's make it happen together. Join me on my Facebook Group - Work/Life/Fun and receive more encouragement and support each day from me and all the others in the group.