Vol 3 No 1
INSIDE THIS ISSUE
for the NEWSLETTER
DID YOU KNOW
id you set your New Year's resolution? Statisticbrain.com found that
"When it is obvious that the goal cannot be reached don't adjust the goal, adjust the action steps."
TAKE THE FIRST STEP!
Click on the Contact link to schedule a complimentary 30-minute coaching call.
Give yourself the opportunity to discover if coaching is the right step for you. If we agree that working together will support you in achieving your goals, then you’ll select a coaching package and we’ll get started. You’ll hear from me within 48 hours.
"Effort is what ignites . . .
ability and turns it into accomplishment."
Carol Dweck, PhD.
Achieving resolutions is a lot like making a journey, going from one place to another. The resolutions are the bridge that takes you from where you are now to where you want to be. So remember to take it one step at a time, just like you would in walking across a bridge.
SEVEN STEPS FOR ACCOMPLISHING RESOLUTIONS
What gives you a sense of purpose or meaning?
1. What helped you accomplish (some of) your goals last year?
2. What strengths did you use to achieve your goals last year?
If you are not sure of your strengths click on the link below which will take you to the VIA Institute website where you can take the FREE character strengths survey.
3. What obstacles or personal liabilities prevented you from accomplishing (some of) your goals? Ex: not planning for setbacks; being unrealistic about your ability to change long entrenched habits; unclear goal; not really committed to making the change, unexpected personal challenge (job loss, illness, etc); procrastination, etc.
4. What do you need to do differently or better in order to achieve your dreams and goals?
5. Who can support you to keep motivated when you encounter obstacles or roadblocks?
6. Who is a good role model of setting and accomplishing goals? What can you learn from them and apply in your life?
7. When in the past have you been successful at accomplishing a goal, i.e., making personal change or learning something new?
8. What are three lessons you learned about what helps you accomplish goals that you can use to help yourself be successful at keeping your resolutions this year?
"A change in your path starts with one step."
WELCOME to Stepping Stones
Welcome to Stepping Stones, a newsletter of ideas, inspiration and tips on ways to remove stumbling blocks in your life that might be preventing you from being as happy as you'd like, from accomplishing your cherished dreams and goals and from having the kind of relationships that bring joy and fulfillment.
If you'd like to subscribe to this quarterly publication, please submit your email address via the box in the left column. I am looking forward to our dialogue and mutual sharing.
SEVEN EASY STEPS FOR ACHIEVING YOUR NEW YEAR'S RESOLUTIONS
As you think about the areas of your life that you want to improve or change in this New Year, take a moment to reflect on the goals you achieved last year. Remember what you accomplished before focusing on what was left undone or partially done. Give yourself credit for the effort you made to accomplish goals you set even if you didn’t completely attain them.
Preparing yourself to write new resolutions by starting with a focus on the positive allows you to appreciate your strengths and the effort it took to make the change. This approach also is more energizing and motivating than viewing yourself with criticism or negative judgment.
So, let’s begin the 7-step Resolution/Goal Setting Process.
1. EXPLORE what you did to make progress towards your resolutions, goals or dreams last year. By focusing on what went well you are remembering that you are someone who can accomplish goals. You are someone who can get things done. You have strengths and talents and are the kind of person who keeps plugging away at making progress. Now begin to systematically develop your new resolutions.
2. WRITE DRAFT RESOLUTIONS OR GOALS. ACTION: For each resolution you make ask yourself 3 Why questions. That is, ask yourself three times “Why do I want to do this?” Write your answers down. When you’ve answered the final Why question, you have likely identified what you really want to do or change. Use this insight to edit or re-write the draft resolution to make it the one you want to achieve. Think about how your goals align with your values. Review the values clarification exercise if that will help you be clear about them.
3. WRITE YOUR TRUE RESOLUTION. Now that you’re clear about what you want to do, achieve or become the next important step is to write the resolution or goal in a way that motivates you to achieve it. You can refine it using the SMART goal method.
To make sure your goals are clear and reachable, each one should be:
The 3 Why Questions allow you to define each element of the SMART goal easily. In addition, the 3 Why Questions will help you identify your personal motivation for wanting to achieve the goal. This is an excellent combination of what and why for the resolutions you make.
TIP: If your goal includes eliminating something it’s important to replace what you eliminate with something else. Replacing unhealthy eating habits with healthier ones is a terrific move. However, if you are in the habit of celebrating with cake and ice cream what will replace these foods in your celebrations? Without a plan to replace it will be easy to slip back into eating cake and ice cream after the first slip up. And then it may be hard to return to the new habit.
4. KEEP YOUR RESOLUTIONS VISIBLE It’s very important to keep your resolutions and goals visible. Out of sight can be out of mind so keeping the resolutions in a place where you can see them every day is a continual reminder of what you’re aiming for and why. You can do this the high tech way by putting them in your smartphone, tablet or computer. You might have them as a screen saver or set them to pop up periodically as a reminder. Using a low tech approach you can write the resolutions and post them on your desk, refrigerator or some other prominent place so you will see them daily.
5. MAKE A PLAN TO OVERCOME OBSTACLES Human beings make mistakes, sometimes fail to do what they desire to do and encounter roadblocks that can prevent accomplishing goals and resolutions. Planning for what you will do when the inevitable obstacles arise can ensure that you keep moving forward rather than giving up or failing to accomplish your goals. For example, if one of your resolutions is to join a gym and attend exercise class three times a week, ask yourself: what will I do to get back on track if I miss an exercise class? One possibility might be to attend the next one or do a make-up class.
One overarching option you might adopt is to plan to pick up where you left off and keep going if you make a mistake or revert to an old habit. Just keep going.
6. PRACTICE SELF-COMPASSION It is easy to become judgmental and criticize ourselves when we make a mistake or fail. However, that approach can derail our progress. Another way to recover when we fail is to practice self-compassion. KristinNeff, PhD., Associate Professor in human development at the University of Texas at Austin defines the concept this way: “we treat ourselves with the same kindness, caring and compassion we would show to a good friend…” By doing this we can more easily accept ourselves and our limitations; we can begin anew knowing that we can still be successful after failing. We’ve done it before and we can do it again
7. CELEBRATE PROGRESS ALONG THE WAY, ESPECIALLY "SMALL WINS." It takes energy and perseverance to achieve a goal. Celebrating milestones along the way will help you maintain your momentum. The celebration is also a reminder of how far you’ve come and the progress you’ve made. Be creative in the ways you acknowledge you progress. Give yourself a gold star, write yourself a note of gratitude for hanging in and making progress, ask a friend to listen as you describe what it took for you to achieve the milestone, throw a party in your honor. Brainstorm new ways to give yourself a pat on the back. Remember Dr. Dweck’s advice: “Effort is what ignites . . . ability and turns it into accomplishment”. Celebrate the effort you made to change and transform.
If you’ve completed these seven steps you are on your way to being one of the 8% who achieve the resolutions set in the New Year. Congratulations!!
SEVEN STEPS FOR ACCOMPLISHING RESOLUTIONS continued
ABOUT THE COACH
As a life and executive coach I work with you to discover effective ways to be more of who you want to be, to do more in less time and to achieve the dreams that you desire. Together we identify the strengths that will propel you towards achieving your goals and explore obstacles or mindsets holding you back. We develop a plan, put the plan in action, assess progress and create strategies to sustain the change. You may even discover something new that you'd never thought of that you want to pursue. Working with a coach can help you accelerate your progress, maintain your motivation and have the support you need to close the gap between where you are now and where you want to be in the future. We celebrate progress along the way and have fun working together. All coaching conversations are confidential.