I love the beginning of the year because I see everyone being so intentional. Most of us are setting our goals for the year, putting plans in place and plugging into things that motivate us. We are so full of hope for what is to come! So why does it fade so quickly?
Consistency is something we all struggle with from time to time but it is the one factor that has to be present for success. So what in the world are you supposed to do? Well first things first, you must let go of your need for perfection. Let me save you the suspense ... it doesn't exist! So if it doesn't exist, why are we setting ourselves up to fail trying to obtain it?
One of the biggest issues I see is our current state of our society and hectic lifestyles. We are programmed to move at full speed all the time and we want instant gratification. Both of which are not a great foundation for reaching long-term goals.
I recently published a blog for North Corner Studios, the fitness studio I work at. It offered 5 tips for rocking your goals in 2018. One of my biggest tips and the area I see people fail most often is goal setting. We have these massive, grandiose pictures in our minds of where we want to go and what we want to accomplish. We get pumped to start and when we don't reach out destination quickly, we get frustrated, give up and move onto the next goal - only to repeat the same process ending in failure again. Instead, know what you want to accomplish and break it down into small goals you can be consistent with over a long period of time.
I typically use a weight loss example because it's easy to see. Let's say I have a client that has a 50-pound weight loss goal. We know they won't lose those 50 pounds overnight or even possibly in a month. Instead of obsessing about the number 50, we're going to break it down into smaller 5-pound goals. Each time we reach 5 pounds we celebrate our accomplishment, make any adjustments needed, and set our goal for the next 5 pounds. This not only allows you to celebrate your progress along the way but it also will keep you motivated and allows you to tweak your plan along the way. If you'd like to read the rest of my tips you can read my NCS blog post by clicking here.
My consistency dramatically improved as my self-care practice did as well. When I started to place more of an importance on my self-care, consistency became a lot easier. I focused on practices such as releasing control, loving myself, being patient, finding peace and managing my stress.
When I became my own best friend and released this idea of perfection - wow did life get so much cooler! It completely turned my notions upside down and shifted the way I had done things my whole life.
Before I used to try and control everything, was go-go-go all the time, never said no, refused to back out of obligations, and was stressed out most of the time! Now my self-care comes first NO MATTER WHAT ... Period! This commitment to myself has opened my eyes and improved my quality of life substantially. Sure I still continue to create my to-do lists and schedule events on my calendar. However, I don't care what my calendar says, if I'm being called to honor where I'm at in that given moment, I will put everything aside and clear my schedule to attend to my self-care needs.
So how did this impact my ability to be consistent? Let's just say, when you put your self-care first, release control and the need to be perfect, consistency becomes almost effortless. When you truly grasp we all have obstacles, we all fall down and we all make mistakes - it makes it easier to just keep moving forward. All the negative talk ceases, along with this overwhelming need to beat yourself up because you are your own best friend and best friends don't speak that way to each other. Best friends lift, motivate and inspire!
You start to realize that your body, mind, and spirit are always communicating and know exactly what they need at each given moment. It is up to you whether you listen or ignore and proceed with your own plan. Life ebbs and flows constantly. Some times you're up and sometimes you're down. The only thing that matters is how you respond. Learning to be flexible and fluent so you can dance with life, is one of the best gifts you can give yourself.
Make it your goal this year to learn to love consistency, especially when it comes to your love for yourself and your self-care practice. Not only will you receive the joy of reaching your goals but you'll gain an entirely new perspective and relationship with yourself as well.