With the first month of the year coming to a close, now’s the time to take a look at the intentions we’ve set for ourselves. For some of us, sticking to our new year resolutions has been smooth sailing, while others have experienced setbacks due to the uncontrollable.
If you find yourself in this second group – like so many of us do – we’ve found that the best step forward is to reflect on the goals you’ve set, determining if they are truly right for you. Then, take action.
“You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.” – C.S. Lewis
While reflecting on your goals, determine which have proven to be achievable and which have not. It’s easy to begin the year with heightened motivation, causing a plethora of goals to be set. But as time goes on, the reality of our daily lives sets in, and time simply can’t be allocated to every single resolution. When this reality sets in, reassess your goals and weed out the ones that have proven to be unattainable. Sometimes focusing on one specific goal is the most beneficial for us in the long run.
“Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people will always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great.” – Mark Twain
Although you may be close with your family and friends, sometimes the people closest to you don’t fully understand your choice of goal or the steps you need to take to achieve it. Some relationships aren’t meant for the goal-achieving aspect of your life. If you find yourself in this position, redirect your focus and look to outside sources for inspiration and mentorship. Mentors can be found within your circle – among friends, family, coworkers – or, commonly, outside of it. Look to individuals in your community who have achieved what you’re aiming for. Connect on social media with those who inspire you. The world is full of motivators and people willing to share their stories to help guide you. Influence can make or break a journey toward one’s goals – make sure your peers don’t lead you astray.
“Happiness is not something readymade. It comes from your own actions.”– Dalai Lama
Ultimately, the most common obstacle may be that the process it takes to reach your chosen goal isn’t making you happy. And that’s okay! A lot of times, we don’t realize what brings us the most fulfillment until we try it out. Look at these situations as stepping stones toward narrowing down your true goal – your true calling. If something is meant for you, it’ll bring you joy and this joy will help push you forward in achieving what you set out to do. This isn’t to say every aspect of the process will bring complete happiness, but at the end of the day, you should feel accomplished and motivated to keep working towards your goal, not depleted or dreadful. If what you’ve been working towards this past month isn’t bringing you joy, reroute your course. Hone in on what does make you happy. For example, if your goal for the year is to have a consistent workout routine but lifting weights isn’t enjoyable, try adding in HIIT or cardio to see if those fill your cup. There’s always more than one route to take, you just have to test the waters to find which route works the best for you.