This is Step 2 of the Effortless Success series where we are exploring the how, what and why of self-discipline with simple daily activities you can add to your routine to move you in the direction of your goals.
If you missed Step 1, do please start here
Today you will choose a method which will help keep daily focus on what you want, and how you will feel when you get there.
A proven method that has been around for a long time is the vision board. A vision board is a visual representation of your goals, placed where you can see it every day. This can be a bulletin board, a 3 ring binder (as long as you open it!), a picture frame, screensaver, or computer wallpaper, to name a few. If you prefer an online version of a vision board, I am a www.canva.com fan – and they do have a free version. Your vision board should be primarily pictures, about 80%. Your subconscious works with pictures, not words. Words must be translated to pictures by the conscious mind and vision boards work best without that extra step.
Journaling – writing down your goals every day, many experts suggest in a ‘future tone’, that is to say, write it as if you have already accomplished your goal. “I am so happy and grateful now that….”. Slow down and do put pen to paper if you choose this method, skip the keyboard on this one.
Create a Talisman. A talisman is an object that is thought to have magic powers. You create your own magic by finding an object in your home or office and associating it with the accomplishment of your goal. This can be visual, like a picture of a lighthouse to represent a destination vacation. I have one client who uses orange lotion to represent a Florida vacation goal – it’s the object combined with an amazing scent and is a powerful talisman for her. A swimsuit could be a talisman for a weight loss goal. A photoshopped $1,000,000 bill could represent a successful business goal. The right music, as we all know, can also be powerful and carry its own ‘magic’. Be creative, have fun and find something meaningful. Whatever you choose, place it where you will see it often throughout the day, and when you see it, stop for 5 seconds and enjoy the feeling of achieving your goal.
The right checklist can also help keep you focused. It should be short. 5 items or less. It should be simple to complete the items, and you should track your accomplishments. A simple red checkmark will suffice. If you have a health goal, items on your daily checklist might be to drink 8 glasses of water, limit bread to 1 day a week, take the stairs, take a selfie every day, and find 1 new clean recipe or exercise to try. If you have a business goal, items on your daily check list might be to ask for referrals, monitor expenditures, read 10 pages of a business journal, find 1 new way to run a more efficient office, journal or expand 1 new business idea.
Your challenge for today is to take action. Choose one (or more) of the methods above and use it consistently to keep your focus on where you want to go and who you want to be.
Quick Case Study:
A client of mine, Carol, has been extremely consistent in one of her goals for over a year and a half now. She has given me permission to share her approach, to keeping her focus, with you. Her goal is to do yoga every day.
She wrote her goal down and schedules the daily activity in her calendar
She posts an inspiring post-it on her bathroom mirror. Hers says "The right balance for my life."
She focuses on how great she really, really feels both mentally and physically after her sessions. In this way she is reinforcing the habit each and every day.
The key is, of course and again, to have something so convenient that you cannot help but take the appropriate action every day. Remember to stop and really enjoy the daily benefits, just like Carol does.
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Linda Short of Elle Short Coaching is a Goal Achievement Coach, certified health and life coach specializing in goal achievement. As a goal achievement coach, I help people struggling with where they are to create their own life story and take action toward their life vision. So that they can be mindful, get unstuck, find joy in each and every day, and live their best life.