“Successful people do what unsuccessful people are not willing to do.”- Jeff Olson
These words ring true for many of us, but are we the successful or the unsuccessful person that is being described? We all want to be successful at something, most of us don’t know how to take the first steps to get there. Whether your goals are personal, professional, academic, or recreational, we can all start with this quote by Jeff Olson. Since I’m blogging about health and wellness we will use diet and exercise as an example, but these steps can be adapted to fit any improvements you wish to make to any aspect of your life.
First, you must set a goal, make it something measurable. So for example, let set the goal to become a more fit person. To make this goal work we need to make it specific and measurable, usually people pick a goal weight, a mile time, etc. (always consult a physician and make sure it is a healthy a reachable goal for you personally). It’s best to also have a reasonable timeline for when you want to reach your goal, if the goal is large then it is best to have smaller goals within the large overarching goal.
Now it is time to think about and list the steps you need to take to reach this goal. Here is where the unsuccessful people and successful people break off. They say the definition of insanity is trying to do the same thing over and over and expecting a different result, so let’s stop acting insane and try a different route. I recommend finding someone you look up to who is successful in the current goal you have. Find out how they achieved their goal and MODIFY it for yourself. What sets this person apart from what you have been doing? Learn about why these techniques have been working for them, see if it has worked for others as well (just because you found one person on the internet that claims an all pizza diet has helped them lose weight, does not mean it’s true). If they are on a strict diet or workout ritual, make sure it is right for you, and ease into it. Jumping into too many changes can affect your body and mind negatively and can make you less likely to stick with the program. If you take the time to ease into a new regime you are more likely to see early success and longer lasting results. Does this all sound like hard work? Well it should, nothing worth having comes easy.
Now to organization, keeping a chart or a checklist can keep you on track and the more small goals you have the more likely you are to reach your large goal and stick to it. Here I recommend daily goals, weekly goals and monthly ‘goals.’ I would make a checklist of activities to accomplish, then an actual reachable goal (see the example below). Stick with your plan, it will take time, but it will be worth it. Think of a “why,” what is so important to you or what will you lose if you don’t succeed why do you need to succeed. The combination of planning, organization, and importance will give you a leg up on your success, but truly it is up to you and your willingness to work for it. As Coldplay so appropriately put it, “If you never try you’ll never know what you are capable of.”
Main Goal: (ex: I want to become a fit person. i.e. run a 5k and have a BMI of X in 6 months)
Why: I want to feel good about the way I look and reduce my risk of Heart Disease
-eat 3 healthy meals
-30 min walk
-only eat out 1x (max)
-work out 3x
-complete daily achievements every day
-Goal: lose 1lb
-complete all daily and weekly achievements and goals
-Increase distance I can run by 1 mile
-Goal: Reduce BMI by X amount