How are your new year intentions coming along?
As I write this, we are quickly coming into the end of January — just around that time many of us either start to lose steam with our resolutions or notice they really never took hold in the first place.
Every wonder why that happens?
The truth is… simply setting goals (even with the best of intentions) often isn’t enough to actually create the changes you intend.
Experts in behavior change and habit formation identify three foundational reasons why this is the case:
- The goal is not as important to us as we think and therefore not genuinely motivating.
- We’re not actually ready to be in action and move forward on the goal.
- Even if it is important and we are ready, we aren’t confident we can do it.
These considerations are what can keep us from experiencing real success with our goals and sometimes stop up from ever even getting started.
They also however, can serve as powerful tools for shifting and transforming our resolutions into our actual realities.
Three Key Goal-Empowering Questions
When my clients want to create a healthy habit or set a new goal, as a wellness coach I always invite them to use these three issues as a set of personally empowering, foundation building questions for themselves before they dive in.
Try it here for yourself. Think of an intention or goal you have and take some time to really reflect on these questions:
- How IMPORTANT is this goal to you? (Be specific – where
does your answer land on a scale of 1 to 10?). Consider…
- how much of this goal is a ‘want to’ vs. a ‘should’?
- if you’re honest with yourself, are there other things that in reality, simply feel (consciously or subconsciously) more important to you than this goal?
- the why underneath your goal matters more than you may realize – ultimately it’s about how you believe you’ll feel when you get ‘there.’ How do you want to feel? Does identifying that feeling help you re-frame your goal in a more inspiring way?
- How READY are you right now to take on and sustain this
goal? (scale of 1 to 10?). Some thoughts to think through here:
- don’t underestimate the power of strategizing – what would ‘being really ready’ look like for you?
- are there obstacles in the way that you hadn’t considered?
- do you have supports in place that would make a difference?
- an example: if eating healthier is your goal, what are the specifics of your plan? What’s in your refrigerator and cupboards right now? How busy is your schedule this week? Will you be able to cook/prepare healthy lunches or dinners? If not, do you have good choices you can turn to for eating out?
- giving yourself an ‘I’m thinking about and preparing for this goal’ stage is an appropriate and even necessary part of the process.
- How CONFIDENT are you right now that you will be able to accomplish this goal or sustain this new habit? (scale of 1 to 10?) This question is key and is a powerful tool to set yourself up for success. I call it your barometer or litmus test.
- If your answer isn’t way up there at a 9 or 10, what would it take to re-think or put in place that would get you there?
Whether your January resolutions could use a re-set or you’re simply wanting to empower yourself anytime of the year, I invite you to take some time with these questions when you’re setting goals or intentions for yourself. Tuning in this way can make all the difference between simply having the same well intentioned resolutions every year and actually living powerfully into them.
If you’d like a little personalized support to get genuinely clear on just what is important and motivating for you, and to get powerfully ready to actually make changes in your day to day life, I’d love to connect with you. Just one conversation with a coach can truly boost your confidence level.
I offer a complimentary ‘Get Unstuck’ coaching session for our