As we complete the second week of the New Year, how are you doing on your New Year’s goals?
Personally, it is about this time when I begin to waiver from my goals, doubt if they are achievable, and, to be honest, give-up on them.
This year though, I decided to be proactive and do something different! Rather than throwing in the towel ten days into the New Year, I requested some time with Swamiji to get his insights on how to stay inspired, how to overcome obstacles, and how to keep going in spite of failures.
Read below Swamiji’s advice and apply this wisdom to keep yourself moving forward in 2014!
Swamiji, what should we do when life’s obstacles threaten to detract us from our goals?
Inevitably life throws us curve balls. The challenge is to keep yourself focused. The easiest way to do this is to positively affirm your goals, and do it frequently.
In the evening, re-read those same goals and think through how the activities performed that day supported, or moved you closer, to your goals.
You could also put the list on your refrigerator door or even near your computer at work. If you are a student, you could put them on your desk and review them occasionally during a break in study.
Remember, the more often you remind yourself of the goals, the easier it will become to make them manifest.
I understand. The approach you suggest makes a lot of sense. However, I seem to get discouraged especially if I falter. It’s like the dieter trying not to eat sweets, but after eating one cookie, suddenly the cookie jar is gone! How do we keep from getting discouraged?
The smallest of activities, accumulated through time, will support your goals.
If you falter, become aware of it, accept that it has happened, and mentally move yourself back into alignment with your objectives.
Develop the attitude that just because you got side-tracked a few times, does not mean that you will let that happen again.
Please remember this key concept: your future is directed by the momentum built at any given moment. This means, we always have the opportunity to create the changes in our lives and to build the future of our dreams, and it can happen in a moment!
A small change can put you in a new direction. Keep going and don’t focus on the negative!
Swamiji, my goals involve breaking some bad habits and replacing them with better habits. This seems to be very challenging. Will it ever get easier?
It does get easier! It gets easier with time provided you stick to your resolution.
Likewise, it takes about 30 days of consistently performing a new habit before it is permanently engrained.
Once the changes are permanent, you no longer have to think about them. They happen automatically.
Stick with your resolutions! You will find that after a month, they will no longer be challenging and they will become part of your regular daily activities. It is at this time that it gets a lot easier.
I am finding that my New Year’s goals may have been a bit too ambitious. Should I rework them?
I always monitor progress and make the appropriate adjustments. If the goal is too ambitious or too unrealistic in the near-term, it can cause a situation where you give-up on it all together. This is the wrong answer!
We do this by breaking down the tasks required for accomplishing the goal into meaningful, realistic steps that are achievable. This approach has several advantages.
First, you are pointing yourself in the direction of your vision.
Second, you allow yourself to feel good about your progress because you know the smaller steps are achievable.
Third, you have not given up on your ambitious goals just because you feel, at this point in time, that they look too ambitious.
I am a big believer in the power of faith. If you believe in yourself and have faith and trust in God, you can accomplish things beyond your imagination!
I wish this for you all!