Each day when I’m staring at the gap between my goals and my behavior, I am reminded of Mel Robbins contention in her Tedx talk that the reason that we don’t meet our goals is that we “are fine with not having them.”
We are fine being overweight, having unresolved conflict with our spouse, or simply watching our dreams slowly die.
I like to translate this general idea into specific questions that I must deal with every day.
To review, the top three goals that I’m working on right now are:
1) Getting down to 162 lbs or 18% body fat (whichever comes first).
2) Finishing the editing on and self-publishing a novel.
3) Consolidating my streams of income to build up a savings account of $12,000.
These goals can be met in a fairly straight forward fashion as follows:
1) Eat less, exercise more. Program to follow: Body For Life. Not only is there a program, but it’s one I’ve used with moderate success in the past.
2) Edit five chapters a week for X number of weeks. Figure out how to format an e-book. Figure out or pay someone to design cover art for me. Vaguely following Denise Grover Swank’s approach, but don’t blame her for my shortcomings.
3) Consolidate my debt so I have a single monthly minimum payment. Focus all available cash flow on savings until I get to $12,000. Roughly following the Debt Tsunami philosophy.
Simple enough and straight forward enough. I’m actually doing great on #2, pretty good on #3, and making a little bit of progress on #1.
The problem is that I have to struggle each day to make progress on these goals because there are reasons that I’ve never done them.
Those struggles lead me to the following specific questions, one for each goal.
1) Would you rather meet your goal or have a large bowl of ice cream, donut, or maple bar?
2) Would you rather meet your goal or watch yet another show on hulu.com?
3) Would you rather meet your goal or buy another exercise shirt so you look cooler meeting goal 1 (or another album on I-Tunes or another tool for yard work or another video game)?
Each day, I have to answer these questions. Some days, I do the right thing and other days I don’t.
What are the things that are keeping you from your ultimate success?
What honest questions should you ask yourself each day to help you make the choices that will get you where you want to go?