Can you believe the first month of 2021 is over? This year is already flying! How are you tracking with your new year’s resolutions so far? Still going strong or are you falling off track with your goals?
If you fall into the latter category, I’ve got you. It’s right about now when the glamour of the new year has worn off and we start to fall back into old patterns. In the past, this is when I would stray from my oh-so-ambitious new year’s resolutions, if not abandon them altogether. That’s one of the reasons I opt for a new theme each year instead of individual resolutions – I’m more likely to stick to it! New year’s resolution or not, my past failures have taught me the two most important things to remember whenever you fall off track with any goal.
1. Don’t Give Up
Ok, you fell off track with your goal. So what? It happens to the best of us. What’s important now is to not give up. Give yourself some grace, learn from your mistakes and keep charging ahead. After all, the journey isn’t over until you say it is. Instead of quitting on yourself, use this falling off the wagon moment as a learning opportunity to keep you on track in the future. Fail forward.
How to Learn from Falling Off Track
I have to physically write things down for them to sink in. If I don’t write it down any and all information goes in one ear and out the other. It’s just how I learn and remember things.
I love journaling or using a planner to map out how I’m progressing and where I might be falling off track with my goals. The act of writing is therapeutic for me. It clears my head and helps me figure out what I can do better to continue thriving.
If you’re more of a visual person, a strategically placed post-it note might do the trick! Or you could create a voice memo for yourself, if you’re more likely to stay committed by hearing a reminder. (And if this is your choice method, more power to you because I cannot stand listening to my own voice.) Regardless of your preferred method for refocusing, here are some questions to use to prompt yourself into getting back on track:
- How successfully am I tracking toward this goal?
- What could I do differently? How am I being setback?
- Why do I think this is happening?
- What can I do to prevent me from doing this again in the future?
- What benchmarks can I put in place to keep me on track?
It might sound silly, but I swear this works! Simple questions help you break down the issues surrounding your goal progress. If you’re specific and honest with yourself, everything gets a little simpler the deeper you dig. For me, this step is key because it’s easy to feel overwhelmed and discouraged after falling off track with a goal. Which brings me to my next point:
2. Don’t beat yourself up.
What’s done is done. You can’t go back in time and make different choices, so what good is beating yourself up going to do? Accept that your actions didn’t align with the goals you have set to become your most fabulous self and move on.
Again, give yourself some grace and keep charging ahead. The negative self-talk is going to keep you in a vicious cycle with negative energy, and that’s going to make it harder and harder to achieve your goals. I am queen of beating myself up when I don’t live up to my own expectations. While I’ve gotten better at it, I can tell you with great experience that the negative talk tracks are just going to increase anxiety and make the road to achieving your goal seem insurmountable. This is another reason why I like to write out how I’m tracking and what I can improve because, the more simple, black-and-white I can make the path seem, the better I feel about myself and my ability to get there.
Overall, falling off track with your goals isn’t that scary. And it’s not all bad, either. It’s only bad if you give up. Otherwise, any challenges or stumbling blocks you encounter are just opportunities for you to learn, realign your focus and keep moving forward. And you get a new chance at it every. single. day.
Chin up, babes. We’ve got this!