How to Stay Committed to Your Goals

productivity Mar 16, 2023

The girl scouts are genius. Have you ever considered the perfect timing of when their top fundraising effort-those boxes of delicious cookies. They usually start arriving mid February when your commitment to the goal of healthy eating has waned.

In this blog post, we'll explore how to stay committed to your goals and achieve success. As we approach mid-March, it's a good time to reflect on the goals we set at the beginning of the year and recommit ourselves to achieving them.

Setting the Right Goals

When setting goals, it's important to ensure that they are the right ones for you. In this post, we'll briefly cover how to set the right goals, using the SMARTER method for goal setting. It's important to note that everyone has different systems that work for them, so if the SMARTER system doesn't resonate with you, check out other goal-setting methods.

The SMARTER method stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time-bound, Evaluate, and Revise. This framework allows you to set more specific, measurable, and achievable goals, which are more motivating. To illustrate this method, let's take the example of launching a podcast.

Firstly, make your goal specific. Instead of saying "I will launch a podcast," make it more specific by saying "I will launch a weekly interview-style podcast where I talk to successful entrepreneurs and business leaders about their experiences and insights."

Next, make it measurable. You could aim to release at least 10 episodes in the first three months after launching, with an average length of 30 minutes per episode, and aim to reach at least 500 downloads per episode.

Ensure that your goal is achievable. Identify and invite suitable guests, record and edit the episodes, and publish them on a podcasting platform. Ensure that you have access to the proper recording equipment and some experience in audio editing.

Make it relevant. Align your podcast with your interests and expertise in business and entrepreneurship. Consider how it allows you to build your personal brand and grow your network.
Set a time-bound goal. Launch your podcast on a specific date, such as April 30, 2023, and release the first episode on that day. Aim to release one episode per week moving forward.

Evaluate your progress. Track the number of downloads for each episode and gather feedback from listeners through social media, email, and podcast reviews. Use this feedback to improve your podcast and refine your approach.

Finally, revise your approach based on the feedback and evaluation. Make changes to the format, guest selection, topic, or episode length, based on what works and what doesn't.

By using the SMARTER framework, you can set goals that are specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, time-bound, evaluated, and revised. This method will help you stay committed to your goals, by providing you with clear and motivating direction.

Creating a Plan of Action

Alright, so now that we've set a clear goal, let's focus on creating a plan of action. This topic can be an entirely different video, and in fact, next week as I'm recording this, I'm running a three-day challenge to recommit and refocus on your goals, and we're going to go into this in depth. If you're interested in joining, click here.

One important piece to creating a clear plan of action that I do want to go over today is the goal gradient hypothesis. And there's a lot of research to back this up. So what is the goal gradient hypothesis? It's simple: organisms spend disproportionate amounts of effort in the final stages of attainment of the objects of drives. They've tested this in rats, but they've also seen it in humans. As you get closer to your goal, your motivation, commitment, and effort put into achieving that goal gets even stronger because you can see it, it's right there.

So if we take the time to break our large goal into smaller action steps, we will increase our commitment and our work in the final stages of reaching just that next step, after step, after step. Let me give you an example. The goal gradient hypothesis came from Clark Hull, a behavioral psychologist. Most of his work was done in animals, but his hypothesis was actually put to the test in a research study at a university.

He had two groups of customers at a particular coffee shop and gave them one of those little punch cards. One group got a blank punch card. The other group got a coffee card that already had a few punches filled out. They found that those with partially completed cards bought coffee more frequently to get to the free coffee. The closer they got to the goal, the faster they purchased coffee. Breaking your goals down and using small actionable steps is proven to be effective by research. It will accelerate your goal-achieving process. 

It makes sense, right? 

Staying Motivated

Next, let's dive into how to stay motivated to keep committed to your goals. And let me tell you, it's not always easy, but it's definitely doable. So, we've already talked about celebrating your wins along the way, which is super important, by the way. But let's take it up a notch, shall we? It's time to visualize your goals, but be careful with the vision board. Sure, they're great, but research shows that spending too much time visualizing can rob you of your motivation. You start feeling like you've achieved the goal without even lifting a finger. So, be mindful of that.

Now, let's talk about measuring yourself on a daily or weekly basis. Here are some great questions that Brendon Bouchard came up with that you can ask yourself regularly: Did you work on things that mattered? Did you enjoy your efforts today? How well did you do at avoiding distractions? And did you set your intention for the day? These questions will help you stay accountable and on track.

Remember, it's not just about achieving the goal, but it's also about thinking ahead and being prepared for obstacles that might come your way. And most importantly, make sure you're doing something that you enjoy. We can't spend all our time doing fun stuff, but we should find joy in the work we put out into the world.

Overcoming Obstacles

As we come to the end of this blog post, I want to emphasize the importance of overcoming obstacles in order to stay committed to your goals. It can be daunting to face challenges and setbacks along the way, but don't let them deter you from reaching your dreams. And remember, asking for help is not a sign of weakness, it's a strength. Don't hesitate to reach out to others for guidance and support when you need it. By staying committed, working on your motivation and discipline, and overcoming obstacles, you will be able to achieve your goals and create the life you desire. So let's work on consistency together and make it a great day!

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