Setting & Keeping Goals During Uncertainty
Ahh, goals. What are your thoughts about goals?
I've come to love setting goals that are small, manageable, and more likely to guarantee “success” in meeting bigger goals.
When I set goals with small actionable steps, I tend to follow-through, and that helps me build the trust and confidence with myself to meet larger longterm goals.
For example, one of my major goals is to help support healthy digestion, a key to overall health. A small step in that goal is taking 3 deep breaths before each meal to get myself into a relaxed, parasympathetic “rest and digest” state. Eating mindfully and in a relaxed state helps support digestion.
Just what are goals and why do we set them?
A goal is an idea of a desired result that you envision, plan and commit to achieve.
We set goals because they give us a sense of meaning and purpose.
It’s a way of building trust with yourself. Goals point you in the direction you want to go and engage you in intentional action.
But before we dive into goal-setting I need to acknowledge the word “uncertainty,” which has permeated our lives as this global pandemic has set in.
Uncertainty is the “state of being uncertain.” Uncertain means “not able to be relied on; not known or definite.”
We’ve been bombarded with the phrase, “these are uncertain times…” which to be perfectly honest, rubs me the wrong way.
Life is always uncertain.
Yes, before our current situation you may have had a predictable routine, which provided you structure and a sense of certainty.
But now your routine and schedule have been disrupted. You might be working from home, no longer have a commute, you’re home schooling, or you lost your job and have more “free time” than expected, and so on.
What does it mean to be certain? It means to know for sure, established beyond doubt. Having complete conviction about something, confident.
Wow! Is anything ever certain?
Now is a time when we’re collectively feeling uncertain about how life will be beyond the coronavirus.
Good news! Thoughts or feelings of uncertainty can actually help you focus on what you can control, what you can do, and where to direct your energy.
I suggest considering goals or intentions that best help support you right now.
I am not suggesting setting goals that make you feel like you “should” do something. Goals can be helpful and supportive to us right now when they offer hope, give clarity, and provide actionable steps to stay focused, and feel connected and grounded.
Where to start?
1. Make a decision.
You don’t need more time, you just need to decide. What do you want to work towards? Hopefully, something that brings you happiness, peace of mind, a sense of accomplishment or joy!
2. Write it down.
Writing down a goal increases your chance of sticking with it. Ask yourself: what will it look like and how will i feel when I've achieved this? Write your goal in terms of what you want, not what you don't want.
3. Tell someone!
Sharing your goal with a trusted friend makes it more real and gives you accountability. Talking about it increases your likelihood of sticking to it.
4. Break it down.
What are the small steps you can implement to bring your goal to fruition? Be specific. It helps you focus. Having simple actionable steps makes your goal easier to achieve and gives you a sense of success along the way.
5. Reevaluate, keep going, and be gentle with yourself.
If you’re working towards a goal and it’s not making you feel better, reevaluate. Or if you’re stuck, take a break and reconsider where you want to be. Be open and flexible with yourself and adjust to what feels right.
Every time you take one small step towards your desired result, give yourself a pat on the back. Celebrate the process. The journey towards your goals might be the most important aspect. What are you learning about yourself?
How do you find the motivation to keep going toward your goal? Motivation comes from within. It comes from your heart and from your mindset. Accomplishing that one small step, reinforces your confidence that you’re doing it. You can do it. You are worthy and deserving of following through on your goal.
Want more support and motivation?
Join me tomorrow, Wednesday April 29 with a Free Facebook Live Workshop: Setting & Keeping Goals During Uncertainty When: Wednesday, 4/29 at 12pm EST / 11am CST / 9am PST Where: LIVE on my FB page, Alyssa at Wellness HQ.
April 28, 2020
May 5, 2020