What are you prepared to give up to reach your goals in 2017?
Here’s a thing I think is interesting. When we set goals for the year (or resolutions, intentions or whatever terminology floats your boat) we become locked-in on what we are going to get.
Maybe we are going to get fit. Get a fabulous booty. Get promoted. Get to run our own business. Get a motorbike licence. Get to our goal weight.
The getting is all good: we need to get absolute clarity on what we are setting our sights on and why. But what we routinely forget to do is shed light on what we are going to give up to get the thing we want to get.
It’s not as sexy or exciting a question, and it can feel a little pessimistic just as the energy of the new intentions are being set — but a little advance consideration of what might derail you means you are so much less likely to self-sabotage your goal later. This is especially important if it is the same goal you have set for the past few years and not achieved (weight loss or consistent exercise, anyone?).
In order to gain something significant in our lives it’s likely that something else will have to be sacrificed to make that happen. At the end of the day it’s just maths. There are only so many hours, so much energy and money to go round. We can pre-empt our goal being derailed due to overwhelm, or the same old self-sabotage, by getting clear upfront on what will go to make room for what we desire.
So, once you have decided what you want in 2017, ask yourself what you are prepared to give up to get it. It might be giving up the need to always be liked at work. Or giving up a lie-in at the weekend so you can join the cycling club. Or giving up playing small or not speaking your mind at the PTA.
Or giving up making the same old excuses about not having time to exercise. Or giving up saying yes when you mean no, or giving up checking your phone in bed so you sleep better, or giving up saying you’ll never meet anyone — and going dating with an open attitude.
Or giving up spending time on/with certain people/tasks so you have the capacity to study. Or giving up cooking from scratch each night so you have time to exercise. Or giving up trying to please everyone all the time. Or giving up having the house spotless — so you have time to learn that new thing you have set your heart on.
In order to gain something significant it’s likely you will have to sacrifice something that will take you out of your zone of comfort. Figure out what has previously blocked you, or what no longer serves you, and make the decision that what you want is a trade worth making.
Maybe you want to choose to give up the instant hit of gratification of playing on your phone in the evening to better connect with your loved ones. Or give up the lost hours of mindless TV in favour of reading more or joining that club. Or give up hiding behind “I’m fine”.
Or give up hating on your body when you look in the mirror and praise it for what it can do. Or give up working through every lunch break. Or give up believing it’s your responsibility to make everyone happy so you can create a balanced life that allows your needs to be of equal importance. Or give up routinely eating beyond physical satiety, just because it tastes good. We all know there’s no such thing as a free lunch.
So, if you want to achieve something significant in 2017, get clear on what you are prepared to give up to get it. It’s right there, if you want it enough.
Through her online Happiness programme “Wellbeing Warriors”, life coach Louise Thompson helps people unlock their happiest and healthiest life. Sign up at louisethompson.com and find more from Louise at bite.co.nz/wellbeing