Commiting to your Goals
We all have goals for ourselves, big or small there are things that we want to accomplish in life. The definition of a goal is “the object of a person's ambition or effort; an aim or desired result.” The second part of this definition is the easy part, we can all name that “desired result” It’s the first part, the “effort” that most of us never get past. We all seem to give up once the excitement starts to wear off, or the realization that its going to be a lot harder than we thought.
We are wired to always think negative first. I really understood what this meant after I listened to a TED Talks by the amazing Mel Robbins. If you haven’t heard of her you NEED to go look her up and listen to anything you can find of hers. She is a motivational speaker and best-selling author of the book “The 5 Second Rule” In this talk, she discussed the network of neurons in our brain called the Reticular Activating System (RAS). She explained (in much greater detail than me) that the purpose of the RAS is to act as a sort of filter that allows certain information in and blocks out other. You and the people from your past helped to program your RAS. So, if you think of something, this filter will confirm your beliefs and look for things in your day to help do that. This is to protect your brain so its not overwhelmed with everything you see in a day; it does not give it equal value.
Since our brains are impacted by negativity much more than pleasant things, meaning they stick with us and they become kind of our go too, you start to understand why we give up so easily. To break it down, if our brains automatically think of negativity first, then our RAS will start to look for things that will confirm those beliefs. Once that starts to happen, you can bet that your goal starts to become less and less likely to be reached. The good news, you can reprogram your Reticular Activating System and thus change the way you view the whole journey to reaching those goals.
For example, if your goal is weight loss, week one and maybe even week two seem to be awesome. You start to see results on the scale, you feel different, your mood, your sleeping habits, everything seems like it’s going in the right direction. Then what happens in week three? You skip a workout, the scale doesn’t seem to be moving as quickly anymore (if at all) and that piece of cake you ate to celebrate Michelle’s birthday “doesn’t really count” Now that the momentum has started to fade, this is when the negative thoughts come crashing in like huge waves, drowning you with each new excuse. “Who was I kidding, this is too hard” “I’m never going to reach my goal” “I deserve to enjoy my life, not stress about what I eat” “I really don’t have the time to exercise this much” “I’ll do this in January, start the new year off fresh” Then of course, your Reticulating Activating System will start to find all the evidence it can to confirm the reasons you have given yourself not to go through with your goal.
Now, if you consciously and with great effort (it’s not going to be easy) start to reprogram your thoughts with why it WILL work, you can change the whole trajectory to your target. This can be done by surrounding yourself with people going through the same thing as you, people who will support you and will hold you accountable. Being in a positive, uplifting environment. READING!!! My goodness, I can’t stress this enough. Read the books that are helping millions transform their lives, they work. I never believed in personal growth, but man was I wrong. Listen to podcasts, watch YouTube videos of all these motivational speakers we are so fortunate enough to have at the touch of a button (literally) Catch them live if you can. Follow them on social media, follow people that motivate you. Change your life so that you can commit and stick to those goals.
I just finished reading another amazing book, “The 10x Rule” by Grant Cardone and he ends the final chapter with one of the most powerful statements I’ve read. He writes, “Success is your duty, obligation and responsibility” How can you fail at anything if you believe this statement? It is your job to assure you set out to create and live a life where success is the only answer.