Have you ever been in the groove with a project? I don’t mean a one-time groove, like an afternoon of flow state, but I mean showing up on a regular basis and making serious progress towards your goal?
If you have, you know that there is no feeling like it. You’re on fire, you’re advancing, you’re showing up for yourself like never before.
And sometimes… that’s not what it feels like. Sometimes it feels like pushing yourself through sand, waking up when you want to stay in bed, or sending yet another letter out in the hopes that this one will be different.
Whether you’re feeling the high or the low, what we’re talking about here is consistency.
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I’m going to make the assumption that most people reading this have heard of Nora Roberts / J.D. Robb. I make this assumption, because she has written over 225 books since 1981. THAT is consistency.
When asked where Roberts finds her inspiration from, she famously said, “the muse is a fickle bitch.” It’s fickle, because if you expect that every time you sit down to work that you’ll be struck by genius, you’re wrong. We’re not always going to write like we’re on fire, hit the gym like a marathoner or slay at our business like Gary V. It’s just not always possible.
What IS possible is showing up. Being CONSISTENT. Putting your butt in the chair, or the bike, or at the podium and showing up for your goal the way you need to in order to achieve the kind of success that you dream about.
Let’s switch gears here and say that your goal is to be a better parent. The way to be consistent in that regard is straightforward, albeit incredibly difficult. Be consistent with your discipline. Consistently be present for your kids and not on your phone. Regularly listen to their needs. Show them they are loved. It’s all about the repetition.
We’ve all had flashes of genius or greatness, but it’s what you do and how you show up over the long-haul on a regular basis that defines who you are.
Now, some of you are saying, yeah, yeah, yeah, but every time I try to be consistent, I fail. How do I do it?
1. Have a Clear Cut Goal
I don’t want to beat a dead horse here, but when you know what you want and why you want it, that’s what you’ll hold on to in the hard moments.
2. Find an Anchor
Out of sight, out of mind. Out of the senses, out of mind, also. So, what is an anchor? An anchor is usually something physical that is a reminder of your why, a prompt that brings you back to the purpose and passion you have for achieving this goal. You can have one anchor, you can have many. It can be something physical (I’m currently wearing a key with a word on it – funnily enough that word is consistency), a smell, a certain song, etc. Have them in all the places where you need reminders (work, car, home, etc.) to help you focus on that goal.
3. See Your Progress
I want y’all to go grade school here. Get out those stickers, reward charts, whatever it is – seeing your progress is powerful. Make yourself up some sort of chart where you can mark off each day that you work on your goal. It doesn’t matter if you work on it for 10 minutes or 10 hours, either way you’re working on it and you get a check, a star, a smiley face, whatever you choose!
Think it’s silly? There is science to back it up. Whenever you tick that checkbox, your brain gets a surge of dopamine, the feel-good, motivational neurotransmitter. Dopamine is gold in terms of keeping you consistent.
4. Set Your Milestones and Your Rewards
Break your goal down into chunks. Say you’re working on a 90-day goal, divide it into monthly goals. What do you need to hit each month to feel successful, and how will you reward yourself? It doesn’t need to be huge, but we NEED to celebrate those small wins (again, dopamine!). It could be a girl’s night out, take-out with your significant other, or something as simple as a day off. The key is to figure out what motivates you and what milestone makes the most sense, while still being a challenge.
Bonus – you can set stretch goals and stretch rewards. If you achieve your stretch goal, you get to do something even cooler!
Heads up – if you’re subscribed to my newsletter, you’ll be getting a great download this week to help keep you on track and consistent, so make sure to sign up.
So, my challenge for you this week is to carve out some time EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. for that goal of yours. I don’t care if you only have fifteen minutes, but do it every day and see how it feels. Get some sort of progress chart going, even if it’s a simple piece of paper on your fridge, and mark off each day you work towards your goal.
I would LOVE to see your progress and hear what you’re working on. Tag me on social media @girltrieslife and use the hashtag #gtl121strong