There is a relatively clear order of operations in regards to getting what you want. The first thing you need to do is to figure out WHAT you want. You need to know what you are passionate about, what drives you, and what feeds your soul. This is important for so many reasons, but for today, we are just going to focus on the order of operations so that we can get to the topic at hand. So please bear with me.
The second thing you need to do in order to get what you want is figure out a game plan using the SMART goal context. SMART is an acronym that stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timely. It is totally possible to turn any passion or interest into a SMART goal, although it may not always seem clear and easy. But I promise it totally can be done.
The third thing you need to do is make the decision that the goal is truly worth it. This sort of falls into designing the goal, however, even with the best laid game plan, one with totally manageable steps along the way, it is totally possible to lose motivation and stop moving. This happens all the time and for lots of reasons. Those reasons and the topic of motivation are all things that are essential to discuss and all either have or will have their own blogs. Again, we need to stay on task for today.
Ok, so you’ve figured out what you love. You’ve figured out a plan to get there. And you have the motivation and stamina to keep it moving. And you’re moving. YAY!
But then, things start to slip. It’s a slow decline at first, something you may not even really notice. You start to NOT follow your plan here and there. You start falling back into old behaviors and routines, things that are not moving you closer toward your goal. And then you realize that it’s happening. You realize that you are not getting as close to your goal as you want. You feel like you’ve been working SO HARD and it’s been for nearly nothing. And you feel sad. And hurt. And let down by the whole goal setting process.
So you stop.
This is where today’s topic really takes off. If you get to a point where you stop moving toward your goal or even if you start moving backwards, it may simply mean that it’s time to evaluate the goal itself and decide if it’s really the RIGHT goal. Just because all of the leg work was done up front and was done well doesn’t mean that the crystal ball you thought you had worked.
Even with impeccable planning using a SMART goal context, there will often if not always be little hiccups and road blocks that pop up, sometimes seemingly out of no where, that seem to derail us. We cannot account for every single possible scnariro. That’s just not realisitc.
So when things stop moving in the direction you want, whatever the reason is, it simply may mean it’s time to reevaluate the target. Perhaps, now that you have more infomraiton about the process, the target is no longer realistic. Or plausable. Or even desirable.
And that’s ok. Not just ok, but totally, 100%, completely ok. And it doesn’t mean you’re a failure. Not one little bit. It simply means its time to demonstrate how flexible you can be and how you can move and bend with the flow.
This is where today’s topic comes in. An essential part of SMART goal setting is to be flexible and to reognize when things just aren’t working. And when they aren’t working, it doesn’t mean that the goal needs to be totally scrapped. It just means that some reworking may need to happen. And that’s ok.
So give yourself permission to be flexible and give yourself permission to change the steps along the way or even the goal itself when appropriate. Because that’s a smart thing to do.