So here we are, the period of time right before resolutions go to die.
Yep. What a beacon of hope.
But we know from the research that those goals and resolutions that you really intended to hit hard this year are already starting to flail around. You may already be feeling the first drum beats of distraction and fatigue toward your goals, and a report by U.S. News and World Reports says that by early February, 80% of us have already given up on those new year goals.
How do we lose steam so fast? And is there a way to fix it?
Productivity expert Maura Thomas says that ‘attention management’ is a powerful way to look at our goals and time. Distractions are always flaying our way and can be one of the primary reasons we set noble resolutions and then bail out on them in just a few short weeks. Maybe getting your goals back on track isn’t about finding a better ‘time’ mousetrap; consider instead what you’re paying attention to this new year.
Here’s some other food for thought when it comes to making those new year promises to yourself stick:
Is your goal realistic…or an impossible dream? Setting unrealistic goals: If we set impossible goals, we can get overwhelmed and give up.
Have you optimized and organized what it is you’d like to accomplish this year? A lack of organization can make it difficult to stay focused and move forward without a plan and a timeline.
Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Won’t you first sit down and estimate the cost to see if you have enough money to complete it?Luke 14:28
Have you prepared for the unexpected? Let’s face it; life will throw you some curve balls. You hit the gym hard for two weeks. But then that old knee injury flared. Do you have a plan in place to accommodate that knee, or are you just going to stop going to the gym? Staying in the game, even in the unexpected, still keeps you on course.
There are many reasons we can become distracted, some of which are out of our control. Concentrating on the task at hand can be challenging if there is too much noise and activity outside. It can also be difficult to focus if you aren’t interested in what you are doing or if the task needs clarification. You can make a plan and then break it down into steps which will help you stay focused and on track.
So how can you help yourself help yourself?
Pick a time and place. Set aside time each day to accomplish your goals. This will allow you to stay productive and focused, and it will give you a feeling of accomplishment.
Eliminate distractions. Turn off your phone’s notifications, log off social media and find a quiet spot to work. Business coach Jenna Kutcher offers great ideas in this episode of her podcast about how to quiet the noise when it comes to moving forward in your goals.
Give yourself a break. As in, a literal break. Yes, push yourself to make progress. But also remember to give yourself time to think, dream, rest, and play. Regular breaks can help you stay focused, energized, and motivated.
Celebrate! Make those small wins count. A trip to the gym when you didn’t feel like it is a big deal! Getting your desk organized matters, even in the face of reaching to hit big numbers. Recognize your achievements and set new goals. It is important to keep moving forward and stay motivated.
Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.Psalm 90:12