Greetings and fair tidings to you who seek to improve your lives:
Do you struggle with the 'gotta do it...' mentality
Then you do, for a while
Then you stop, because you couldn't maintain what you started....
Then guilt sets in, along with frustration. Then you try harder, then your life starts to revolve around your goals -
INSTEAD of your goals supporting your life.
Then you burn out. Then you are more depressed/guilt ridden/self critical.
Then you start to recede back to where you were, losing the ground you DID gain from your heroic efforts. Then you try to convince yourself you 'just gotta get back at it..."
It's like ice-skating uphill. You can do it, but as soon as you stop, you start to slide backwards.
Better to use a tow rope
Better yet, plan out your energies, and do what you can handle.
Three ideas that will help you out:
1) Start small. When starting out, the habit is FAR more important than what you actually get accomplished during the determined time.
Example: When beginning a new exercise routine, I began with 2-10 minutes, first thing in the morning. Then another 3-5 minutes during my lunch break, and another 2-10 minutes in the evening.
I didn't force it. And, since I was short on time, I knew it wouldn't go long.
Plus, having that shorter time frame, MADE me focus my efforts, get my heart rate up, and stimulate as much growth as possible during that time.
I had not excuse. "Come on, Man! Your telling me you don't have TWO minutes to do SOMETHING?!!"
said JG to JG.
Lo and behold, it only took a few weeks, and I was committed to longer sessions - maybe 15-20 minutes, SOMEHOW getting them in.
Then, On a long weekend, I installed the next habit: Vision, goals, purpose clarification, and then learning (ok, so two habits).
Again, starting small, and leaving room to grow. You'll need the dopamine released from small accomplishments to grow and grow, UNTIL you have the capacity AND the will to tackle something a little bigger.
2) Consistency. You have to be consistent. This ties into the first principle, to start small. The idea between the two, is to start as small as you need to, in order to keep the habit consistent.
Also, you don't want to cram your schedule, which leaves no room for growth.
Tatoo that into your consciousness.
Through the vehicle of consistently showing up, you then have the opportunity to refine and clarify, little by little.
Last one principle:
3) Sequential. Do things in the right order. You want to make sure you have the necessary foundations, resources, information, capital, support, clarity, accountability and direction before reaching to the next level.
You learn the art of the 'plateau'. We can't JUST surge uphill - like the ice-skating example. We have to strategize and plan. Passion? Yes! Strategy? Totally necessary.
You, I, we have to level-off, solidify our habits, get these good habits to a place where we barely have to think about them, and we WANT to do them.
When I say 'want', I mean deep, confident "lets do this" mentality; not wishful thinking as in this example:
"well, I'd like to do that....... (as your confidence and voice trails off)
THEN, and ONLY THEN, start to reach to the next-level.
There you have it:
1) Start small and leave room for growth
2) Be consistent - starting as small as you need to in order to stay focused and habitual - and keep showing up
3) Sequential. Do things in the right order. Don't put the cart before the horse. Gather up the resources, information, support, accountability, and develop the clarity before marching forth.
There you have it, I hope this helps,
Strength and Honor,