It’s now mid-February… how are those New Year goals doing? Yeahhhh ’bout that.
Maybe you told yourself you were going to work on your beatmatching, or start making moves to play out in more bars and clubs.
If you did actually made some progress, great! I bet you’re still frustrated with how quickly you’re getting there though. Be aware of that slow creep of anxiety, crippling your march to success. What starts out as a small nag of dissatisfaction grows the longer it takes to hit your goal… eventually causing you to give up.
Don’t let that be you.
Consider the following:
- The enemy of anxiety and his evil cousins ‘confusion’ & ‘uncertainty’ is confidence.
- Confidence can be built, and isn’t just something that’s instilled in you at birth. It is learned, like a muscle.
- Confidence is the result of incremental, constant, and consistent improvement.
- Thus, the escape hatch from anxiety’s snare of overwhelm is to measure progress incrementally.
- Then by taking the smallest amount of time to strategically plan our attack, we can remove the roadblocks that our willpower & emotions put in our way.
- What’s even better, constant improvement and progress gains momentum the longer we stick with it. Source
Think about a goal or an outcome. It might be…
I want to manually beatmatch
Play out in more bars/clubs
Ok, but by when? What’s reasonable?
Mental Time Horizons
The scope of your target should be a max of 90 days into the future.
“The psychological and neurological reason behind setting 90 day goals is that it is the ‘horizon’ line. It reaches as far out as you can see. This allows a tangible taste of what could impact my ‘today.’”
On top of this, habits take 30-60 days to create & break.
Keep that in mind the first few times you try something new. Our brains operate linearly and in the now; we extrapolate the difficulty of something we’re doing far into the future. Assuming things won’t get easier, we eventually get frustrated and stop.
Clever Execution Scripts
Now, think of the steps required to accomplish your goal. Create a plan that, if followed, will undeniably move the ball in the direction of that goal.. even if it doesn’t necessarily achieve it. Then, chunk your plan into a two week sprint.
That is now your goal.
By chipping away at your goal every single week, you will eventually reach your target.
Don’t worry about the target itself.. worry about the process of what you need to do instead. In that vein, think about the potential obstacles to following through. Ask yourself,
What is most likely to throw off my routine?
How should I react in order to stay on track?
Build into your plan what you will do. This way when curveballs pop up you’ll be ready. Your willpower and lack of quick thinking won’t get in your way. Willpower is finite and constantly changing; do you want your emotions and fleeting energy to determine whether or not you will succeed? Didn’t think so.
Get all your thinking out of the way ahead of time. Then, just execute! Simple, right?
How to ensure you actually follow through…
Grab an annual calendar ($10) and put it somewhere so you’ll see it often, one that displays the entire year. Mark off each week with a big fat marker in which you execute successfully per your pre-defined plan.
This will 1) hold yourself accountable and 2) give you a little dopamine hit for every success mark resulting a positive feedback loop for our fickle minds. Seriously though, this is the best $10 I’ve spent each and every year. It keeps my mind on progress and momentum instead of the fact I haven’t hit my goal yet.
“Focusing on what’s not done can leave you feeling lousy about yourself, nervous or anxious, not to mention sleep-deprived. Research … showed that by making plans to get things done, that inner nag can be turned off, or at least toned down.” Source
And don’t just make a list of stuff to do each week. To-do lists are evil, schedule everything! What doesn’t get scheduled doesn’t get done.
For next level accountability, text a close friend of yours. Tell them A) this week’s goal and B) to check back in next week on your progress. Congrats, you just turbo-charged the probability you’ll hit your goals!
Even on the bad days, do the smallest of tasks to keep the ball moving forward. Track your progress so you know exactly where you stand and you can see what you’ve been up to and have someone, or something keep you accountable to following through.
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