Tag: lifestyle

goal-setting

Importance of Goal Setting – Simple Guide to Achieve Success!

Do you ever wish your life was different? Have you found yourself wishing you were more organised, physically fit, better with money, or further along in your career, or want to start a new career?

I know I have.

Do you want to know the secret to improving yourself? It lies within the art of setting goals!

Let’s talk successful goal setting!

If your goals mean enough for you to set them, then you must really want to achieve them! Everything you dream and want to achieve begins with setting a goal.

I used to be brilliant at setting goals and failing miserably.  It’s not a great feeling and I used to beat myself up about this, A LOT!

If you want to learn some successful goal setting tips, and how to set achievable goals, just keep reading!

 

 

Set SMART goals

Your goals can be achieved by making sure they are:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Attainable
  • Realistic
  • Time-bound

Let’s say you want to start paying off your £2000 credit card debt. Don’t just tell yourself that you ‘want to become debt-free.’

Set a goal of paying £250 extra a month toward your debt to have it paid off in 6 months.

It is both specific and measurable, because you know exactly how much to pay. It’ll be clear whether or not you hit your goal each month.

You know it’s attainable and realistic if you cut back on eating out and unnecessary shopping. And it’s time-bound with that 6-month goal in mind.

Top tip:

Struggling with debt? Want advice with what method are available to tackle debt? See my post below:

Want advice on how to pay off your debt? See my simple guide with ten tips below:

 

 

Make different choices for a different outcome

Nothing in your life will change unless you start making different choices. By taking new action toward your goals, you will begin to see how your life can improve.

Setting goals without being willing to act differently is meaningless.

pexels-seesouk-souvannaphongsay-777155

You have to do the work. Having goals is the easy part. Accepting the sacrifices to make them happen is where the challenge lies.

Always remember that you are in control of your own actions, and likewise, your own life.

 

Write down your goals

Research has shown that writing down your goals has a huge impact on the likelihood that you’ll actually achieve them.

Not to get too scientific, but the act of writing down your dreams and goals involves both sides of your brain. It’s a step beyond just thinking about your goals.

This sends a strong message to your brain that you mean business.

Writing your goals down can help you make sure they’re S.M.A.R.T., and not just some random shot in the dark.

I really like this procrastinators Planner to help with goal setting and planning. It’ll help you build the habits that will support your goals.

 

Break them down into steps

Now that you have your goal in writing, jot down the steps it’ll take to make it happen.

For example, if you want to start cooking at home more to save money, Step 1 could be to research meal planning.

Breaking your goal down into simple, actionable steps takes the guesswork and intimidation out of it.

Don’t be a procrastinator, these small stages seem far more doable that some broad, scary goal.

Remember that icky old adage, ‘How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.’ It just makes sense.

 

Keep track of your progress

Be sure to monitor your progress throughout. The small wins of accomplishing each step toward your goal are a great motivation to propel you forward.

Remember how you wrote down your goal, and all the steps involved?

pexels-oleg-magni-952057 (1)

Check them off, cross them out, or write the date you mastered each one as you go.

This frequent reminder is just what you need to stay on track. You can even treat yourself to small rewards as you go. A little incentive goes a long way!

 

Know your why

Your goals become more powerful the second you attach a significant meaning to them. Your “why” is the reason you want to accomplish a goal.

Anyone can set a goal to lose weight, pay off debt or make more money, but what does that change mean for you in your life? If you can take a step back from the actual goal and think about how your life will be impacted by this action, you’ll be able create more powerful goals.

For example:

Your Goal: I want to pay off my student loan debt.
Better Goal: I want to pay off my student loan debt because:

  1. I will have more disposable income.
  2. I can save more for retirement.
  3. I can be a better role model for my daughter.
  4. I can focus on investing and creating a better financial portfolio.

Having a goal is great, but understanding why you want to accomplish that goal is even better. If you can pinpoint a few good reasons or great side effects of accomplishing this goal, then these reasons will help you continue to commit to the goal when times get rough.

 

Speak as if it’s already done

Your brain, while incredibly complex, is also pretty easy to trick. That’s why we do vision boards annually and look at them daily – the more your brain sees something, the more it believes it’s already done. The same thing goes for what you say.

shutterstock_89223247

Changing your goals from something you will do in the future to something you’re currently doing not tells your brain that you are committed to doing this NOW – it’s not something you’re putting off to a later date.

For example:

Your Goal: I’m going to work out on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays after work.
Better goal: I work out every Monday, Wednesday and Friday after work.

 

Don’t get distracted

Maybe you’re the type of person who starts a variety of new things, but often lacks the follow-through necessary to complete them. Don’t worry, I’m right there with you.

For those of us with ‘shiny object syndrome,’ it is so important to stay focused on the goals we set. One way is to concentrate on one goal at a time.

You’re not going to reinvent yourself instantly.

If you wish you could lose weight, pay off debt, get a new job, and rescue 3 dogs all at once, you’re probably just going to get frustrated and do nothing.

Pick one goal and make some major headway on it before adding another.

 

Focus on what you will do, not what you won’t do

There’s something about restricting ourselves that just makes us a human’s rebel.

That’s one of the problems with diets. If you start thinking that you’ll start a diet on Monday, I bet you’ll spend the weekend feasting on all the foods you’re going to miss.

The key is to stop thinking about what you won’t be able to do when you’re trying to reach your goal. Don’t think of it in terms of restriction at all!

Take positive action and research some healthy, tasty recipes. Write down your meal plan for the week and grocery shop for those ingredients.

Look toward your goal with enthusiasm, instead of dread.

 

Have patience

When asked whether she was being patient, someone I knew once said, “No, I never cared for it.”

While I thought that was hilarious, I understood her sentiment completely.

If patience isn’t your superpower either, the endurance it can take to reach a goal can be challenging.

But I promise that reaching that goal is worth the wait!

Big goals take time, and expecting immediate results can be the downfall of successful goal setting.

Top tip:

See my post below for slowing down to avoid a hectic life:

 

 

Share your goals with people

Telling people about your new goals makes them seem more real. It’s beneficial in two ways.

Having the support of a friend or relative in your corner is incredibly helpful and motivating. It also serves to hold you accountable.

Just be sure to tell people who will be supportive, not naggy. You want to keep the entire process positive!

 

Recruit a friend

Now that you’ve told some people about your new goal, maybe they’ll feel inspired and want to join you.

Nothing makes working toward a goal more enjoyable than doing it with someone you like.

friendship-1

If your goal is to run a 5k, a training buddy can help you stay motivated and build excitement.

If you want to stop ordering takeout every night, you and a friend could have a freezer cooking session.

Or you could help each other declutter your basements and have a two-family garage sale.

Strengthening a friendship or starting a new one can be the perfect added benefit to achieving your goal.

 

Importance of goal setting – Final thought

Make sure your goals don’t get stale! Ideally, you should make time every day to take some action toward them.

Make time is the operative phrase here. We must make time for what is important to us.

You may have to scale back on the less important things that steal your time in order to achieve your goals.

Don’t fall victim to your own excuse that you ‘don’t have time.’ You can’t afford to waste time being less than your best.

“Never give up on a dream because of the time it will take to accomplish it. The time will pass anyway.”      -Earl Nightingale

I hope you enjoyed these tips for how to set goals and achieve them. Cheers to the new, goal-crushing you!

If you found this post useful, you might want to save THIS PIN below to your Pinterest Lifestyle board for later!

Goal-setting

 



SLOW-DOWN

How to Slow Down and Enjoy Life – Tips to Calm Down Your Hectic Life!

Fair too often we are caught up in the busy schedule of life and wonder “where did the day go?”, or “hasn’t that week flown by”, or “the summer will be soon over”. This happens because you’re so busy in life just doing that you forget how to be.

At some point or the other, all of us have inevitably found ourselves wanting to just leave it all and go far away from all the rush, from all the noise and just be in peace with our own self.

There is too much rushing, too much achieving in this overly fast paced world. If you find yourself in such a position then it is actually reminding you that you need to slow things down and go slow with life. Step outside the rush.

Learning how to slow down in life is a challenge by itself, especially for those who seem to work non-stop, or those who feel guilty for taking a break as they think “I could be doing this, or doing that”.

But living in the fast lane comes at a price, that price is you’re missing out on your life. The time you spending planning, working, doing, rushing and all the other things that lead to hectic life, takes away living in the moment and experiencing what it truly feels like to be alive.

This is so profound, yet what is it to be alive?  Although I cannot concretely answer that question for you, through my personal experience I have found that people feel the most alive when they are truly experiencing the present moment.  Those times when you are able to slow down and pay attention.

 

 

Is your mindset keeping you from living life in the present moment?

Your mindset may hold certain beliefs that keep you stuck in the fast lane. These could come from personal experience, habits, things you’ve learned growing up or the pressure of society.

Take a step back and a moment to reflect on your mindset and your beliefs on why you shouldn’t be slowing down from a fast-paced life.

What do these beliefs mean to you?

Here are some examples of beliefs you may have about slowing down:

  • If I take a break or slow down, I’m lazy
  • Things won’t get done.
  • I could be doing something else in the time I’m taking a break
  • I need to be doing more to be more successful than Joe Bloggs next door, and the only way I can do that is by working harder- even if it stresses me out.

The ironic thing is that you will actually be more productive and efficient if you take breaks and pay attention to what you are doing in the moment. This is because living in the present moment increases your focus.

937579-Nhat-Hanh-Quote-The-present-moment-is-the-only-moment-available-to

When you work yourself into the ground without no break, and constantly move from task to task, you are not fully living in the present moment and therefore are not fully engaged. As a result, you are living your life in auto-pilot mode.

This can result in two things happening:

  • You are not fully focused; therefore, you’re not putting the best work into things. This is because you are just thinking about moving onto the next task.
  • You are burning yourself out by never taking breaks or slowing down.

 

How can you live in the present moment?

While you’re rushing about from task to task, somebody else is living in the present moment and time is moving much slower for them. It is the same number of seconds ticking by, the same minutes and hours pass by, but it is your perception of those moments that is different.

Your perception is your reality, therefore if you find that you seem to be rushing through life then the answer lies in changing your perception.  Some of that may originate in identifying and changing your anxious thoughts.

moment-of-happiness

Additionally, you can practice Mindfulness by being aware of your senses (touch, sight, hearing, taste, and smell) in the present moment.  This is one of the most effective ways to truly bring you into experiencing this moment fully.

Try it now and pay attention to what is around you.  Notice how you feel.

Top tip:

Read my post on how Mindfulness changed my life around!

 

 

Tips to help you slow down in life:

 Practice Mindfulness

Mindfulness meditation or practicing mindful awareness regularly can make it easier to slow down life.  By observing your thoughts non-judgmentally, you can increase your awareness when you are rushing around for no particular reason.  This can help you to approach your life and certain situations with presence and focus, instead of just rushing through them to get to the next thing.

 

Minimise Distractions

Distractions such as a smartphone or television can make it harder for you to focus on the present moment and take you down a black hole in your mind without you even realising it.  Leave your phone in your car or put it on “do not disturb” to prevent distractions so you can be fully present and appreciate the things and people in front of you.

 

Give Yourself Reminders

Little reminders can be helpful so that you remember to slow down and pay attention.  Whether it is a phone wallpaper, a sign on your desk, or a decal on your mirror… visual reminders to slow down can get you out of your head and into the present.

 

Go for a walk and look around at nature.

Head out for a walk and make yourself take notice at everything around you – the sounds; trees; flowers; etc.  Connect again with the world around you and allow yourself to walk gently – not racing around.

 

Take Breaks

Taking breaks at home, work, or school can help you stop anxious thinking or stop feeling stressed.  Taking a break can help you to refocus and reflect.

Some helpful things to do on a break are taking a walk, taking deep breaths, or eating mindfully.  These are examples of breaks that bring you fully into your present moment experience, and out of the stress of overthinking and rushing.

 

Enjoy the little things:

Getting to enjoy life more is one of the perks of living a slow life.

First, you need to learn to notice what is happening around you. Notice the breeze, the flowers, the clouds. Notice the smell of things.

 

How to slow down and enjoy life – Final thought

If you can cultivate present moment awareness, then you can learn how to slow down and appreciate life.  Appreciation comes from actually paying attention to yourself, your body, your environment, and the people around you- not rushing from one thing to the next.

So, the next time you find yourself caught in a frenzy of stress, overwhelm, and frustration, ask yourself:

“How can I choose to slow down today?”

If you found this post useful, you might want to save THIS PIN below to your Pinterest Lifestyle board for later!

Slow Down Your Life (1)