The Process and Motivation of Goal Setting Success
Mistakes we make in Goal Setting and How to fix them! The two most important factors in goal setting- Process and Motivation! The process of goal setting is so important and often misunderstood. I walk you through the powerful process of my 7 success steps so you can be successful in accomplishing your goals. Then I teach you all about motivation and how you need to be operating from “want” instead of “should” and how Love & Acceptance are more powerful motivators than Shame!
We are all too familiar with some of the mistakes in the gaol setting process! Here are the 5 most common mistakes that I see my clients make when setting goals:
1- Not writing down your goals
2- Not being specific and measurable
3- Not Identifying Obstacles and making a plan of action
4- Not Tracking Your Progress
I offer you some tips and tricks that will help you be more successful in your goal setting. So, first of all, we’re going to talk about the process of setting goals.
Write Your Goal Down
And a lot of people are under the impression that if they just think it in their mind, that. You know, it will magically happen. And, and unfortunately with goal setting, that’s not always the case. You really do need to set yourself up for success and write your goal down. And it does need to be specific.
It does need to be measurable. So the very first thing to do is just identify your goal. What exactly do you want to accomplish? And then as you write it down, this is my tip on this is that really? You need to write it down as if in present tense as if you’ve already achieved that goal. So typically it will start with the word “to”.
So then immediately to your mind, you might think, okay, I want to be a better communicator or to learn watercolor painting, or to improve my view of myself.
Be Specific and Make it Measurable
That’s kind of the identification of your goal. And as you write it down, What you want to do is be super specific and have a deadline. So your goal could actually be to improve my communication skills by participating in, in this course, by this date. Do you see how that’s a little bit different? So the goal, the, the first version of it is pretty vague.
It doesn’t have a timeline. It’s not specific. It’s not measurable. But that’s the basis of the goal. If you want to become a better communicator, then this is how you would go about it. So the goal would be to improve my communication skills by participating in this course, by this time. Let’s take the next one to learn watercolor painting.
So if that’s a goal that you’ve set for this year to learn something specific like watercolor painting, or dancing or something else that really intrigues you just be really specific. Another way to word this would be: to learn watercolor painting by signing up for a beginner class by this date.
It’s specific, it’s measurable. It’s like it’s already happened and it begins with the word too. And the biggest step is really to write that down. Let’s take that last example that I threw out there was to improve my view of myself. One way to make that specific and measurable and with a deadline is to say, to improve my view of myself by working on this plan with my coach, starting on this day.
Make an Action Plan
And then you have an action plan, right? So once you’ve identified your goal, you’ve written it down and you’ve set a deadline. Here’s the, where the magic of the process happens. And this is where this is a step that most people just are unaware of and they skip this step. And this is the step that brings you the most traction and can help your motivation as well.
It’s to identify any obstacles that you can foresee. Now, you can’t always foresee obstacles when you’re pursuing a certain goal, but our minds are pretty good at saying, okay, well, I might encounter this, this or this. Right. So are there any barriers that you will face as you work toward this goal and as you identify those obstacles or those barriers, you’ll come up with an action plan and those obstacles.
Actually become your action steps. So if you know that there might be some obstacles in your way, um, maybe it’s a scheduling issue with what class you’re taking or how to schedule in the time to work with your life coach or whatever it may be. You just write those obstacles down and then you write a solution for each of those obstacles that you’ve identified.
And those become your action steps. So you’ve identified your goal. It’s specific, it’s measurable, there’s a deadline. And then these obstacles become your action steps and you know exactly what you need to do to work toward your. So once you’ve identified those and you have some really great action steps to help propel you forward.
Track your Progress
The next step that I like to do is to track. You have got to track your progress on a weekly basis or a daily basis. So anything that is not tracked you simply just don’t know. You don’t know how often you really are doing the things that you say you’re doing, unless you’ve tracked them and our brains, at least my mind has this natural tendency to not want to track things.
I just want to share my experience of my weight loss journey. So last year I. Gained about 40 extra pounds. I shared in my introductory episode that I suffer from Hashimoto’s disease, which affects my thyroid and your thyroid controls a lot in your body, but it also controls your metabolism.
So over the course of several years and lots of thyroid medication changes and things like that, I had just, I had gained 40 extra pounds. I wasn’t used to being that heavy. I’ve always been a really active person. But with each thyroid medication change, I would gain five to 10 pounds in a week and I would eat the same and exercise the same.
And I would just gain five to 10 pounds in a week, which I can’t even eat that much food. So just having my thyroid and my metabolism, my metabolism out of alignment had caused a lot of the weight gain. And so last year I started my weight loss journey and I found that my mind was really, really resistant to tracking.
First of all, my weight, every single day, I tracked my weight, my water, and then my sleep, my hours of sleep. For those of you on a weight loss journey. Really important factors. You need to be know, you need to be tracking your food, your water and your sleep. It’s a key component to weight loss. So I found that my mind was pretty resistant to tracking these things, but I did it anyway because I knew it would be essential.
And what I found is that by tracking. All of these things on a daily basis, I actually had several months worth of data that I could change my plan or be able to alter my goals or where I was going, because I had actually tracked what I had eaten, how much I had, how much.
I had tracked what I had eaten, how much water I had drank during the day and how much sleep I had gotten. And then I was able to make really great choices about all of my other things. Moving forward.
I was able to make really good choices about my food intake, my water intake and my sleeping habits, because I attract all those things. So the power of tracking your progress is really awesome. It just gives you the data that you need. Um, I found that my mind also was really resistant to tracking my food journaling and tracking it in my app.
And. Which is so silly because when I actually sat down and said, okay, okay, I’m just going to track all of my food intake so that I could track my macros and my calorie intake. It took me about two minutes and my mind was so resistant to tracking it because I was like, oh, it’s such a pain. And when I actually sat down and I thought, okay, this takes about two minutes.
That’s totally doable. And it’s not a pain. And I actually made a little rule for myself that I couldn’t eat anything until it was tracked in my head. I actually had to input what I was about to eat into my app before I could eat it. And really it did, it took less than a minute before each meal. And then I found my brain wasn’t quite so resistant to it.
So that was something that really helped me, but this idea of actually tracking your progress, how often are you working towards your goal can give you the data that you need or help you solve problems and work through things that arise as you’re trying to achieve your goal and actually work through them to be success.
And then there’s the last piece. And, and this is something that we talked about last week on the podcast was to celebrate. So celebrate all of your wins. Every action step that you’ve taken should be rewarded. And we talked about last week, how this doesn’t have to be a food reward and it doesn’t have to be a reward that costs money necessarily.
It totally can. But it can also be just celebrating with yourself. Right. It’s that smile? That kind of, yeah, I totally did that. That’s just like me gives your brain that dopamine hit and encourages you. That behavior again, and that will help you be successful. So kind of the process that we just walked through was to identify your goal and then to write it down, make sure that it’s specific measurable, and that there’s a deadline.
And then that piece to identify obstacles and those obstacles become your action steps and then tracking your progress and celebrate. So that’s kind of the process summed up in a little bit of a nutshell. I find that that process is a little bit more successful for people because they anticipate what their obstacles might be.
And then they’re able to formulate a plan to tackle those obstacles and make those their action steps. And I have found that super successful in my goal setting. If you don’t know where to start in the goal setting process. One question that I love to ask is what do I need? And just ask yourself what is something that I, that I need in my life.
Something that I feel like is lacking or something that would really enhance my life, but what is something that I need? So you may want to try that as well, and then walk yourself through these seven steps of setting your goals. All right. The next thing I want to talk about today is want versus should.
What is Your Motivation?
What is something that you want, or like we just talked about or need, and that any time that I operate from the word should, that’s a red flag for me. I don’t have clear motivation and I do it out of obligation. And then I end up feeling resentful because it’s something. I know I should do instead of something that I want to do.
And I just regularly check in with myself, is this something that I want to do? Or is this something that I feel like I should do? And I’m not saying that you will ever have things that you need to do in your life, that you should do. What I’m saying is that it’s all about the motivation. My motivation for something that I should do is very, very low.
And my motivation for something that I want to do is much higher. So I just want to give you a couple of examples of this that I’ve used in my life. And one of them is this sounds so silly, but it was washing my face. So I’m the mom of five kids and they were all born in under 10 years. And. That was a really intense part of my life.
So, so much so that I would go to bed just exhausted every night. And I got in the habit of not washing my face before I went to bed. And all I could think of was I just went to sleep. I’m just so exhausted. And I would tell myself I really should wash my face. And do you know how much motivation that gave me? Zero! “I should wash my face” was not a motivating thing for me.
And as soon as I changed that around and really took a good look at how essential washing my face was every day. I decided that that’s something that I want to do. In fact, I took a look at how I wanted to take care of myself and my self care needs and decided that washing my face every night was actually a way that I could take care of myself and make me feel better that it was actually part of my self-care routine.
And when I reframed it like that, that it was something that I wanted to do in order to take care of myself. My motivation to wash my face each night has increased dramatically and not surprising. I have been more consistent about washing my face every night, who knew. Right? So I want you to just take a look at your motivation when you’re setting your goal.
What do you need and what do you want? And that you’re not operating from a place of should, but that you’re operating from a place of, I want to do this and it’s a way that I can actually take care of myself. So my other experience with this was my food choices. So as I went. Along my weight loss journey, which I guess I should share.
I lost 40 pounds in five months, which was super incredible, but I really had to shift my mindset from I, I should eat this to, I want to eat this and that simple switch in mindset. It changed everything for me. I had to take a look at when I was tempted to eat treats, um, I’m gluten-free and I have found that sugar really affects my body in negative ways. Anytime I saw a nice tasty, yummy baked, good full of gluten and sugar, I had to really just be honest with myself and say that is toxic to my body, but I really want to fuel my body with good things. And so whenever I was tempted with a tree, I could kind of shift from, I really don’t want that simply because I know what it does to my body.
And I don’t want that desired out. That’s not a desired outcome for me. And then with my healthy food, I had to really switch from, I should be eating. Two, I want to eat this. I want to have lots of protein and lots of veggies and healthy fats in my diet. And that that’s something that I want to, and that’s also a really great way for me to take care of me and my body and just shifting that mindset from should to want changed my motivation incredibly.
And I’m sure you will find the same. So that was our second pointer. Today is changed from should to one. And then I want to, yeah, just talk about shame today. Isn’t that our favorite subject? Just everybody loves to talk about shame, right. But what I want to talk about is that shame is a horrible motivator.
So continuing on this path of our motivation, as we are setting and achieving our goals, shame is a horrible motivator. It can be powerful, but it’s just not long lasting. So it has a really short shelf life. So when we’re working toward achieving a goal and we, um, there’s a common phrase that says I fell off the bandwagon, right?
Isn’t that a little dramatic, like, just because you didn’t do one thing one day doesn’t mean you necessarily fell off the bandwagon or that the whole thing’s, you know, no good. And that you’ll just quit. You really need to adopt this mindset of, I can start over at any moment and I don’t have to start over every day.
I don’t have to start over at the new week or a new month or a new year, but I can decide today that, okay. So I didn’t do that desired behavior. And now I commit to doing it again. What I find is that when we fall short of our goals or what we want to achieve, if we layer shame on top of it, it really kills our motivation.
So you need to be able to bounce back and say, yeah, I didn’t do so well in this today. And I’m going to do this to combat that tomorrow, but wallowing in shame, like I fell off the bandwagon or, oh, I can’t believe I didn’t do that, or, yep. That’s just like me. I just keep messing up. Adding shame to that only gives you more to dig out of and makes it harder.
To actually go back to committing to your goals and, and helping you achieve them. So I find that we cannot hate ourselves to change. It might work for a few days for some of us, it might work for a week, but ultimately we cannot hate ourselves to make the changes that we need in our. So I see this a lot with weight loss.
A lot of people think that they can hate themselves into losing weight and it’s just not very successful. And it’s because it’s not a great motivating factor. In fact, love and acceptance is actually a more powerful motivator for a longer period of time. I’m going to say that again. Love is a more powerful motivator and lasts a lot longer.
I love myself enough to make the changes that I need to in order for my body to be even healthier. That my friends is a more powerful motivator than shaming and hating my body into weight loss. It just wouldn’t have lasted as long, but from a place of love, I was able to achieve my goal. And beyond my initial goal was to lose 30 pounds and I was seeing such amazing results that I actually changed my goal and bumped it to 40 pounds.
And I was able to do that within five months, but I did it from a place that was much more motivating, which was. I love my body and I love that. I love it enough to take care of it and to make the choices every day to help it be healthy and help me be healthy. And that’s a way that I can take care of me and my physical body is a huge part of, of me.
And that is true. At some point we do need to be a little bit uncomfortable. As we seek meaningful change in our lives, it will require some discomfort and that’s okay. So she mentioned that guilt is actually a pretty powerful motivator, but shame is not. So when we feel guilt, it actually is a little warning system within us to say, Hey, something here is not quite right.
And it can motivate us to actually have some meaningful change in our lives. But she says that shame is not that shame does not have a powerful influence. She says that. Guilt is just as powerful as shame, but its influence is positive while shames is destructive. So she says that in her research, she has found that shame corrodes the very part of us that believes we can change and do better.
I’m going to read that again. In fact, in my research, I have found that shame corrodes the very part of us that believes we can change and do better. So as you are embarking on new goals, I really want you to take a look at your motivating factor for this. And if it’s shame, it probably won’t be very successful for you.
If it’s a twinge of guilt, it might be. Or if it’s just simply, what do I want, what do I want to do? That’s a powerful, motivating factor. So Bernay brown goes on to say that shame is much more likely to be the cause of destructive and hurtful behaviors than it is to be the solution. So my friends, we cannot hate ourselves.
To change. We cannot shame ourselves to change, not the meaningful change that we’re actually seeking. If we want meaningful lasting, sustainable change in our lives, it comes from love. It comes from love. It comes from acceptance, and that is your most powerful motivator that is more sustainable and will last longer, quick recap.
We went over the process and motivation of goals today. So we walked through the seven steps of setting goals, identifying your goal, writing it down, setting a deadline, identifying obstacles, and making those into action steps tracking. Your progress and rewarding yourself. And we talked about the motivating factors of love and of shame, and that shame is never the way to go.
My friends, when it comes to change, it is love and acceptance. I love and accept me exactly how I am. I had to love and accept my body in order to lose the weight that I needed to be. Healthy. And that is what will be your most powerful motivator is love and acceptance!
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