We always start the year super excited about our new goals. There’s something about a fresh start that makes us feel like we can do anything. And trust me, there have been plenty of times when one of my goals for the new year was something along the lines of slaying like Beyoncé (because why not?)—but it’s no coincidence that these types of goals don’t produce any real results.
As I look at the goals I have this year, I’m still driven to accomplish every single one of them because of the one question I asked myself before I wrote down each goal.
The question I asked myself is… WHY?
Yep, that’s it.
Most of the time, we have goals and we have no idea why we want to accomplish them—a lot of things just sound nice. Having six-pack abs? Sounds nice. Making more money? Sounds nice. But when you take the time to think about why you want to do something, it forces you to be more intentional. If you sit down and write down “six-pack abs” as one of your goals, you ask yourself why you want a six-pack, but you can’t think of any substantial reasons why—it’s probably not something that’s super important for you. And that’s OK.
Now, if you write down “make more money” as a goal and your reason is so you can take care of your family’s financial needs without living paycheck to paycheck and so you can have a family summer vacation for the first time ever, you’re going to be incredibly motivated throughout the year to look for opportunities to make more money.
When you’re clear on your why, then you naturally start thinking about the HOW and you start creating an actionable plan. You can’t accomplish goals without knowing what you need to do to achieve them.
Asking yourself “why” doesn’t apply to just your goals. I’m sure there are many times you feel obligated to do something that you really have no interest in doing, but you do it anyway. During those questionable times, ask yourself why you feel obligated to do something. If your reasons don’t feel 100% right to you, then it’s probably not something you should follow through with—and you shouldn’t feel bad about it!
The key is to know that you always have the power to create the type of life you want. You just have to be honest with yourself about whether or not certain things are truly worth your time and how you’re going to accomplish them.
Magazine photo courtesy of Cosmopolitan Magazine