To help people reach their goals and build some accountability for our consistent actions, I have been talking a lot about consistency in my private Facebook community. Ironically, I life got in the way of my consistency action, which had me thinking about habits and goals.
When I break it down, I am trying to create some good habits for my business and encourage others to do the same. In doing this, I am frequently referencing their goals and the consistent work they put into reaching those goals.
The thing with goals is that they have an end point. It’s one of the reasons we diet only to regain the weight or train to run a 5K then revert to our less healthy habits. I know I am not the only one who has been there?
When we are focused on a goal, we often focus on the result and lose sight of the many small steps that we need to take to get there. It’s this all or nothing attitude that leads to overwhelm and failure.
Success is about the person you become in the process, those habits you create over time and not the one result you create in the end.
The other issue with goals is that there are times when reaching our goal isn’t always possible, at least not in the same way we initially thought.
For example, I have a goal of running a 5K but my recent ankle injury and the fact that I stopped running after my last 5K, has extended the time it would take to get ready for the next one. Can I run another 5K – of course, but I will need to adjust my goal and expectations.
The same can be true with a business financial goal. We may set a goal, only to have a big client leave or face an unexpected expense. When this happens, we need to adjust our expectations or the timeline associated with our goal.
Habits, on the other hand, can make a large goal easier to attain and even exceed. Habits happen automatically, and the consistent work we put into it means that we can see results with what feels like little work. Those small steps we take each day can quickly add up to big rewards.
“First we make our habits, then our habits make us.” – Charles C. Nobel
What we do we become
The things you do each day become engrained in you and make you who you are. With good habits in place, you become the person you wish to be (ie: the writer, the runner, the indispensable virtual assistant).
Small daily habits can lead to big results over time, and they become so routine that we don’t need to think about them. It’s a lifestyle change, like running three days a week to lead you to your 5K goal. These daily habits become a part of our day, like brushing your teeth or making your morning coffee!
It’s time to think about our goals as a lifestyle change and not as a destination. Focus on the small things you need to do each day to become the person you want to be.
Creating Good Habits for Business
Creating good habits involves creating a consistent schedule and routine. Start with one habit or a smaller step to get you where you want to be. Here are some examples:
- Schedule in 30-minutes of writing each day
- Schedule a 20-minute walk
- Begin with writing one paragraph
Right now my focus is on consistently putting out content. In the past, I was a bit more erratic. I would write or go live on Facebook whenever the inspiration strikes, then be frustrated with myself for being so inconsistent.
My new routine involves scheduling blocks of time for content creation each day. I schedule two blocks of time each morning to focus on content, distraction free. I set a timer to help me stay on track and not let the content creation take too much time from my other work.
By creating a schedule and routine, my content isn’t always as compelling as the longer posts that I would write once a month, but I am building the routine and the habit. Like exercise, I am building that muscle and will become stronger over time.
What happens when we fall off course
Back to my original point – Life will get in the way. Last year at this time, my lifestyle included running three times a week. Then I stopped running. My girls went back to school, and my schedule felt a little overwhelming. A missed day became a week, then a month … and here I am.
When you fall off course, get back on track by adding your habit to your schedule and making a commitment to taking a small step every day.
When you don’t have time to write, at least write a paragraph. When you don’t have time for your run, take that 20-minute walk. Remember that success requires us to be disciplined yet flexible. Remember that success requires us to be disciplined yet flexible.
Accountability and Support
If you are looking for extra motivation, accountability, and support, join us in our private Facebook community. In addition to the content and tips I share each day, we have a great community of women business owners who share their tips and encouragement.
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