The beginning of a new year is often met by a flurry of emotions that blow in after the festivities of the holidays. For many, thoughtful reflection is the first phase of a life-reset journey. Momentum, at times, is hard to maintain when goals cause an unexpected source of stress. But this doesn’t have to be your story.
Reduce the stress of goal setting and become better rounded for the long-run by following these tips for work life balance:
- Focus on forming habits
- Prioritize accordingly
- Take a dynamic approach
- Harness the power of emotions
- Tap into your potential
- Connect the dots
- Reward yourself regularly
- Recognize the validity of choice
- Welcome any outcome
Focus on habit forming before goal setting
Successful people agree that everyday habits add up to big wins. This is commonly misjudged when falling into the rabbit hole of unrealistic new year’s resolutions. Failure to fulfill these resolutions is not solely caused by a lack of motivation; it is usually a result of either poor planning, non-existent tracking, or both. Turn your track record on its head to come out on top.
Prioritize your goals accordingly
Setting goals for yourself is often a task in itself. Goal setting is not the end game. Knowing what you want and choosing what is most important to you will ultimately provide the motivation and discipline required to push forward. Coming up with a list of sorts also lends to stress management, removing the dread that accompanies completion of a task.
Take a dynamic approach
People have multi-faceted desires so broad that reaching them simultaneously can be next to impossible. This doesn’t have to be a setback on your journey. Instead of stretching yourself thin, focus on breaking your desires down into buckets and identifying milestones that crossover. This creates manageable chunks that tackle different areas. If attending more social gatherings is your goal and you feel torn between spiritual growth and mental healing, your cross-over solution might be attending a seminar or spiritual event to achieve both.
Harness the power of your emotions
Our emotions are closely tied to the goals we set. They determine if we are successes or failures. That doesn’t mean we must only feel positive emotions. Negative ones can be just as powerful when allowed to express themselves. Being discouraged doesn’t feel great when we are trying to achieve a primary goal. However, being discouraged can lay open the opportunity to re-evaluate our progress and see which secondary goals are flourishing. This can help us feel motivated and make us more productive as we move toward success.
Tap into your potential
Many people underestimate just how much goal setting and achieving power lies dormant inside of them. They can be put off by figuring out specific objectives with measurable outcomes and which actions are needed to meet those objectives. There are a multitude of courses, coaches, books and other materials to help with the details. With those aside, honoring the potential within is the most powerful detail to focus on by:
➡ Identifying your goals
➡ Figuring out what actions need to be taken
➡ Setting up systems that will help you stay on track
Connect the dots
Understanding the connection between one’s new goals and the wider network of ideas and perspectives in our lives is an important factor in personal growth. The goals we set for ourselves may appear isolated and individualized; they exist within a deeply interconnected web of existing ideology and thought. When attempting to add new objectives, we must consider how they will fit into this already established framework. With a bit of creativity, the web can be reshaped and fresh perspectives can be adopted that won’t compromise our original goals.
Reward yourself regularly
Who says a cheat meal or lazy day are really cheating? There’s a reason that positive reinforcement is effective and good for our mental health. It boosts our confidence, motivates us through rough patches, and forms a structured system of give and take to keep us consistent and on the right footing. With the right incentive, any average person can move mountains.
Recognize the validity of choice
A lot of days, we live on autopilot. We may not understand how many micro-choices run our days:
➡ Sidestepping a pile of laundry
➡ Getting everything ready the night before so we can leave on time
➡ Washing our faces
➡ Waiting before responding to a triggering situation
➡ Ignoring credit card bills
Being our best self is the result of conscious effort and not allowing what is outside of our control to trigger us.
Welcome any outcome
Life always has a way of surprising us. Anything can happen, even if our plans are incredibly detailed. If something outside of our control prevents us from achieving a particular result, there is almost always some newfound benefit or purpose lurking in the background. It’s easy to get discouraged when things don’t go according to plan, but with a little introspection and effort it may be possible to uncover the hidden silver lining.
Our day-to-day decisions and actions can serve as clues to what our life goals truly are. We often have the best intentions of achieving goals like dieting, exercise, and professional growth. Other priorities inadvertently surface in their place when our minds are taxed with too much.
“What are your goals for 2023 and how are you planning on achieving them?”
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