Stephanie Obi, an expert in creating online courses asked her instagram followers “What is the challenge you are facing with your goals”. 95% responded by saying “being consistent with them, “following through”.
By the end of January, a lot of the “new year” goals we make and plans go out the window.
The first step in becoming more consistent at achieving our goals is to understand the reason for
Before jumping in to finish reading this article, I want you to start thinking of the reason you haven’t been consistent with your goals.
You may not be able to find your reason now, keep thinking of it and eventually, the reason will come to you and when it does, write it down.
Make sure to stay honest with yourself. This exercise is so important because whatever the reason is, you want to make sure you are treating the disease as inconsistency is just a symptom.
After you have figured this out, applying this hacks below becomes easy to do.
1.Create goals and plans that matter.
Things like “Stop drinking “, “Start reading three books per month”, “ Stop partying” “Save more” often make it on the “goals list” for so many of us.
These things are not bad; the problem is that for too many of us, they do not matter.
Our goals should be a list of things that will bring us closer to our dream lives and help us achieve the vision for our lives. Our goals should be tied to a larger picture or else, there is no motivation to see them through.
“Read a book a month” can seem like such a good thing but, what is the end point of doing it. Are you doing it because that is what you think you should be doing? Is the result from reading a book a month going to be valuable to you?
“People are unhappy in large part because they are confused about what is valuable”- William Irvine.
The vision for my life is to live
“Reading a book a month” will only matter to me if the books being read will help me get better in my areas of weakness or improve my area of strength.
Increasing my streams of income will help me gain financial freedom so I can focus on providing immense value consistently.
Grow my audience means I can reach more people and get my work to them.
See how all my goals for this month are tied to my vision for the year and, vision for my life.
When you do this, your vision becomes your motivation because you see that your goals do matter.
2.Understand that to be consistent, you need to get consistent at being consistent.
Even the word itself explains how to achieve it.
Too many people quit way too fast because they failed at something the first time.
We start selling ourselves this script that is just wrong “I am not a consistent person”.
To be consistent, we have to learn to keep trying. You will fail at any new habit you want to pickup, any at all. You need to learn how to try again even after failing.
It takes 21 days to learn a new habit and 90 to make it a lifestyle, I know this.
I also know that, every time an addict relapses and manages to get right back, determined to win, their next relapse takes even longer.
For every time we fail and get back up, we get 1% stronger and in this case, 1% consistent.
3. Don’t try to set a whole year’s goal, focus on a month.
Like I shared in this article, 12 months is a long time to try setting goals for. Too many things can and will change between then and now.
Instead, focus on January and then tweak as you go.
January can have 3 big goals and you keep upgrading as you go.
By doing this, we don’t get overwhelmed, we don’t feel overstretched.
4. The how is not your business.
Sometimes, when we set big goals, we start to worry about ‘how’.
How we will be able to achieve those dreams.
The how is not your business.
No matter how you worry, think, plan, you cannot figure it out.
Instead, make a simple plan and focus on action, action is how we win. If I worried about “how I was going to become financially free, nothing will change.
If I create a 3 step plan and just focus on executing, that is how I start drawing closer to my goal.
Next time you start worrying if the things you are doing count or you start over-thinking how you can achieve something, stop yourself and say “ the how is not my business, action is”.
The how is the business of the universe, action is our business”.
5. Focus on the process and not the outcome
I have a mental picture of the life I want. I have the pictures on my vision board that represent that.
But, I have stopped dwelling in that future. I know what it looks like but, I choose to be present in the work I need to do now.
These are some of the things that happen when we focus on the outcome versus the process:
- Disappointment when things don’t turn out our way (which by the way happens a lot).
- Lose of motivation because we feel we are putting in all the work and no results.
- In-ability to take action because, when we stay imagining what it will be like when we achieve our goals and role playing our Forbes interview, we are burning energy and we are teaching our brain to focus on the pleasure and not the pain ( Thoughts are things-)
If we want to become consistent at achieving our goals, we must learn to stay in the process, in the execution mode.
“Champions are not built in the ring, they are merely recognized there. What you cheat on in the early light of the morning, will show up in the ring under the bright lights”-Joe Frazier
6. Apply the 1% rule of consistency
This rule states that for there to be exponential growth in any area we want to be great at, all we need to do is be 1% better every day.
This means we don’t really need to do a lot of work in any specific field, we just need to do enough to make us 1% better daily.
“There is no enemy greater than the enemy within”- Diamond okoh
Imagine if you got 1% better every single day at anything, by the end of the year you will be 365% better at it.
This also includes consistency. Strive to be 1% better every day at being consistent. Not being a consistent person for the year or being a consistent person at achieving your goals but, being a consistent person today, now.
7. Be mindful of your energy
“you are the average of the five people you spend the most time with”-Jim Rohn
If the people around you aren’t making you better, they are making you worse.. You cannot have 5 best friends who are ambitionless and think your 20’s are for fun” but expect to be consistent and to put in the work.
Energy is contagious.
Also be very mindful of the people you come in contact with. There are times when I go out with someone and when I leave them hours later, I am emotionally disorganized and burned out.
Then, there are others whom, when I leave them, I feel empowered and excited. Make sure that you only meet the former on accident. This means, you should not have such people in your everyday life.
You want friends, instagram posts, podcasts that empower you to take action. If it doesn’t empower you, it weakens you.
8. Have a “maybe it will not, maybe it will” approach
When we have all these big expectations from the actions we take as regards our goals, we get really disappointed when they don’t pan out. Loose the expectations.
“Expect everything, and attach to nothing”- Carrie Campbell
The sole aim for every action we take towards our goals should be learning. Learning what works and what doesn’t. What breeds the results we want and what doesn’t and then, doing more of those things that work.
If something doesn’t work out, great. Thank God we learnt that one doesn’t work.
If it does “Yayy, one more thing that works”.
9. Cut the fat
Anything that takes away from you time you can be doing the real work you need to be doing to achieve your goals is FAT.
Something that seems as productive as “replying customer emails” is FAT if it doesn’t bring you closer to your monthly goals.
This doesn’t mean don’t reply customer email, it simply means don’t spend your entire day replying e-mails every 3 hours.
The fat for me included; binge watching movies, sleeping in, sacrificing work time for friend time, saying YES to things I shouldn’t have been saying YES to, fear of rejection, hours of mindless gossiping, Excessive imagining.
The list is long and right now, I am automating my entire email process as that is a very big fat .
You know what your fat is, pay attention to what you do daily and you find them out.
Cutting the fat is necessary because it reduces the noise between you and the action you need to take. It puts you right in from of them versus around them
10. Have time for relaxation and refreshment.
Take a break; take a day off if you need to. I find that setting 30 minutes to one hour, sometimes even 3 between long tasks helps me cool off and get back to work better.
Burn out is the biggest enemy of consistency.
Refresh by going to chit chat with a spouse or friend, reading a medium post, seeing an episode of Grey’s anatomy just, doing anything that relaxes you.
Give your breaks deadlines so, you can say “break time is 4:00-4:30” and then, get back to work around that time.
I hope this article helps you stay on track your goals.
I hope the goals you have set are goals that matter.