Wherever you are in your life right now, chances are there is a gap between where you are, and where you want to be and NOW is the time to change. It starts with goal setting.
With 2018 upon us, setting “resolution” goals of a better life has become the trend among the masses.
The highest level performers know that waiting to start tomorrow is a failing strategy because tomorrow never comes. The most successful people are that way not because they’re better than you or me, but they understand the process of goal attainment and the rule of “adapt or perish”.
We must constantly be evolving, reaching, and becoming a better version of ourselves to truly live a fulfilled life. Without goals we live meaningless lives of monotony and resentment.
Goals are an essential part of progress, and must come before everything else.
So if you don’t have a crystal clear list of goals, the time is now to get it done. For some people goals are financial, for some they’re physical, for some it is their level of internal happiness or sense of well being. The list is endless.
Whatever it is you’re unhappy about in life, chances are its due to the fact that you’re living in old patterns developed throughout your life that got you to exactly to where you are now, and you aren’t even aware of it.
To live a greater life than we live now, we must become greater versions of ourselves.
This could mean acquiring a new skill, a new habit, a new character trait, a new focus, a new outlook on life. Whatever it may be, it’s going to take change.
Trying to improve something in your life without changing habits, and character traits is a near impossibility.
This literally means changing your nervous system, and the expression patterns of your DNA.
The patterns, habits, strengths and weaknesses you possess right now were the perfect combination to get you to exactly this point in your life, and old habits die hard. So don’t expect it to be easy.
Literally every single time you perform the same old daily patterns you reinforce wiring in your brain, making it harder and harder to break. (Yet another reason why you must start today).
Your body and mind respond to stresses, stimuli, and the environment and they adapt to better be able to exist in these situations. Our bodies are adaptation machines.
What we’re exposed to, we become.
If you grew up in the Arctic Circle and survived on the land, your life would be very different than if you had grown up in an affluent Southern California home. That much is obvious to most of us.
Yet, when it comes to our current life circumstances, most of us fail to recognize why other people are living the vibrant life of their dreams, and others are miserable and discontent.
Where you are in life now has come about because of a set of choices you made along the way, and in the exact same way you can choose to become someone completely different from this day forward.
But, as it may seem obvious by now, it’s important that you know WHO that person is that you want to become.
What they do, and what daily habits and characteristics they portray to get them where they are…. And how do you develop those same traits?
The more detailed your submersion into becoming this person, the faster your results will be.
How do they eat? What type of language do they use? How do they treat others? What are their spending habits? What are their investment habits? Who are their friends? What do they read? What do they do in their spare time? How do they treat their spouse, kids and loved ones? What is their exercise routine?
You get the idea.
If you’re currently 160lbs and want to be 180 lbs, you can continue to eat like the same 160 lb person and “hope” to one day become 180lbs.
People completely misunderstood the most important aspect of the 2002 cult movie “the secret” which suggested that by simply thinking about goals intently enough, they will come to fruition. Incorrect assumption in most instances.
Thinking about the desired outcome, daily and almost incessantly is a necessary step to begin to change your actions toward the attainment of your goals.
Whether you’re missing step 1, or step 2 the process should look like this:
1) Set a BHAG (big hairy audacious goal)
2) Determine the Process, skillset, or habits that will be necessary to create the person you want to become.
And make no mistake, you will literally becoming a different person.
Your nervous system will change and patterns sent to your brain will change.
The expression of your DNA will change and your body will begin to become a different version of the same you. The version that is better adapted to the circumstances and stresses you subject your body to.
As you can imagine, this reality can go in all directions.
An example that is easy to see is simply eat more food for 7 days in a row and watch how this amazing machine intelligently saves the extra calories. Or, drop calories for 7 days and watch the reverse.
It’s easy to see in instances around food, but the same is true for any new stimulus that is repeated.
What you repeatedly do becomes habit, and habits create your life.
The fight for homeostasis
Your body will resist and attempt to maintain homeostasis. The steady state of internal balance that already exists inside your body. This state has already been adapted to, requires no additional energy and your body craves this state because it is best for survival.
One of the main reasons we start to gain weight as adults is that we stop doing new things.
Imagine your life as a child, likely all the way until about 25 for most of us, every day was a learning experience. We were being exposed to new and novel stimuli that required us to adapt, learn and grow. Any new stimulus is demanding to your brain, nervous system, and muscular systems therefore requires additional calories.
Once the learning stops, your body establishes a baseline and it becomes very efficient.
No longer requiring the same abundance of calories it used to require.
Changing habits is harder the longer they’ve been engrained. You need a strong guiding light. Think of a lighthouse in the storm. Something that keeps you moving in the right direction to avoid the magnetic draw of laziness, mindlessness, and habit.
THIS is where strong goals come in.
Set the type of goals that make something of you to achieve them. – Jim Rohn
Then, determine the habits, characteristics, and traits necessary to become the person that already has those goals, and get to work.
A few final thoughts:
If you’re having a hard time determining what the goals should be, try spending some time in meditation and pay attention to what comes up in your mind when you have silenced the noise of day to day life.
DO NOT set a goal and follow it up with reasons as to why you can’t.
Refuse to get caught in the monotony of day to day life. Getting uncomfortable will start to make you aware of the areas that you’re not happy with.
Become more aware and grateful for everything in life.
Ask yourself a these questions:
What if you woke up tomorrow and the water and electricity is gone? Do you have a plan?
What if you were fired tomorrow or lost your safety net?
If everything you own and possess was taken from you tomorrow, how long would it take for you to regain it?
What skill set do you need to acquire to be the best man, dad, leader, and have a physique that can carry you through life like a fighter jet?
Get after it.