How (not) to set goals
It’s almost the end of the week and most of you are probably not too happy about Monday sneaking in. Developing this mindset of living on a Monday to Friday, 9 to 5 schedule, our brains are programmed in a way to get the creeps on Monday mornings. Did you know that more heart attacks occured on a Monday than on any other day during the week? Seems like there is a collective anti-Monday campaign going on.
Weekends and holidays become goals, travelling during our free time becomes a purpose and we hustle every day to get the reward in the end: Leisure time!
I was wondering if another approach could be more effective. There are 5 things to consider when planning towards a bigger goal and not to fall into the Living for the weekend lifestyle.
1. Systems instead of goals
Ever wondered why these endless goals lists just never work out as they supposed to? Writing down goals is a good step, but it is only the first. Try to focus on systematic goals instead of saying "getting fit and go to the gym every other day" you could create a system which promotes activity and a healthy lifestyle. Try not to set goals because you think you need to fix something, keep the values of your systems updated and consider them when doing anything.
2. Short term rewards
Discipline and motivation are two tricky factors. If you are not motivated the discipline will fade away and if your lack of discipline leads to less significant results your motivation will shrink. Until you have created a new habit and the new behaviour is fully internalised in your system (see point 1) try to give yourself some small rewards every now and then. Accomplished a goal? Get a treat that is not in conflict with your system and celebrate the daily life instead of waiting for the weekend or your holiday. Don't be over obsessed with optimising yourself and give yourself some breaks to relax and also to refocus on what's important for you.
3. Make mistakes
It is not easy to admit a failure or a mistake, but a mistake or failure is actually not that bad, as long as you keep moving. Mistakes are natural and part of getting closer to the goals you actually want. Embrace a failure stands for embracing the journey.
4. See the bigger picture but stay flexible
If you are like me and love to dream big plus having a tendency to be not the most patient person in the world the struggle is real. When trying to achieve a goal be flexible, have long term and short term goals and try to be flexible with time and effort. It might need you to try to something a few times more than expected. Overnight success is a myth. People, who are extremely successful or famous overnight, were mostly hustling for a long time in their area before they got successful.
5. Learn to love the hustle
I think that was also one of the hardest for me to accept. You can't skip it. Every master or successful person in any area had to get to some phase of hustle. That doesn't always mean to work like a maniac and so on as it can vary for every person. Hustling for the moment so you can earn the rewards in the future. Learn how to save, live on a budget, plan more efficient and get organised.
And don’t forget, the journey is the reward :)