You have to "own" your goal, every step of the way, from wanting it to achieving it.
With an understanding of what really matters to you, you'll be able to define the life you want to lead and the inspirations and motivations that will help you along your way. Setting goals helps illuminate your path.
But you can't do this half heartedly. In fact, we want you to make a contract with yourself.
Now, that may sound dramatic but think about this: it's a promise to yourself. Only better.
Something very powerful happens when we commit to a goal on paper. What was a wish, or a hope, or a dream gets turned into a commitment to which you are accountable. Which means, your chances of success just skyrocketed!
A contract means a "no excuses" mentality. Too busy to exercise? Not in the mood? Can't resist that burger and fries? Your contract to yourself will remind you just what you are committing to and why your goal is so important. It will also help you identify your saboteurs and plan appropriate countermeasures. It will give you clarity, and help you check your progress, and provide validation for your actions.
Make a contract for success with yourself by following these 3 easy steps.
Step 1 - write down your answers to these questions
What goal/s do I want to achieve?
It is best to make them SMART ie specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and timely. So rather than saying "I want to increase my energy levels" or "I want to lose weight", add meaningful details, such as "I want to drop a dress size before the wedding on 6 June 2015."
The payoff: Why do I want to achieve this goal? How will achieving it make me feel?
eg "I want to drop a dress size so I can fit into my favourite dress for the wedding, and feel as fabulous as I did last time I wore it."
What steps do I need to take to achieve this goal?
What do you need to do, or accomplish? In what time frame? List out the steps.
The fun bit: Rewards
Think about the rewards you will give yourself as you achieve your mini goals and major goal.
A special outing for the half-way mark? A new outfit when your goal is achieved? A celebration with friends at the end of your Thirty Day Challenge?
What is stopping me getting there? What obstacles (real or perceived) am I facing?
Think about your favourite excuses. Do you blame others for misleading you? Do you blame your work hours for stopping you exercise? Is your negative head chatter about your body image holding you back?
When the going gets tough, what will I do?
Don't let those excuses get the better of you. Remember, you are in charge of your destiny. Wake up earlier to fit in a workout. Get your clothes out the night before. Put your alarm clock on the other side of the room. Have only "clean" food in the house while you are watching your weight. Become your own cheerleader. Enlist the help and support of friends. For every excuse you're likely to develop when things get tough - have a countermeasure at the ready.
Step 2 - copy, complete and print out the following section.
This is the simplest, but most important, step.
Personal Success Contract
My contract with myself
My SMART goal is (insert details of your smart goals)
so that (insert they reason you want to achieve this goal and how it will make you feel when you have achieved it.)
My reward will be (insert your mini goal rewards, as well as your major reward)
I, (insert your name), am committed to following through with my fitness and health goals and completing my Thirty Day Challenge. I know that I have enormous resources within that will help me to continue moving forward. When I feel difficulties arise I can review my goals and become passionate about what I am achieving.
I know that my instructor and the Studio Pilates team are there to support me and to encourage me. Most importantly, I promise to embrace my goals, enjoy the next 30 days, and push through any obstacles I might face knowing that I will feel amazing at the end of the Challenge.
Step 3 - Put this contract on your fridge or keep the text file on your desktop, (or make it your screensaver) put it on your phone and review it every few days or when you are feeling challenged.
Respect and support the goals and conditions you have promised yourself.
Step 4 - (Optional) Share your goals
You can go public with your goals and plans, letting family and friends know what you are trying to achieve and how you are planning to go about it. Research has found that sharing goals can lead to a huge incentive to stay on track, accelerating your chances of success.
The team at Studio Pilates love seeing our client's progress. Take your before picture and write your goal in the caption and post it on Facebook and Instagram with the #SP30daychallenge and tag us @studio_pilates.
Step 5 - (Essential) Enjoy the ride!
Achieving your goals is a seriously exhilarating feeling - and the whole journey to get there can be lots of fun too, as you realise you are stronger, and more amazing with every day.