Rosalyn Palmer : Set meaningful goals — and aim to reach them
On May 25, 1961, President John F. Kennedy announced the dramatic and ambitious goal of sending an American safely to the moon before the end of the decade.
He publicly committed to his goal, which many said was folly or a dream, and it pulled him and all those who worked on the space programme forward to make it a reality.
You can change your life and the first step is simply to decide — to commit — to set a goal.
What is not to love about a process that allows you to get the most out of life?
Goals are instructions to yourself. When you set a goal you are commanding yourself to set off in a new or improved direction and, what is more, it is proven to work.
Motivational speaker Brian Tracy says: “An average person with average talent, ambition and education can outstrip the most brilliant genius in our society, if that person has clear, focused goals.”
Yet how many of you are now groaning slightly and thinking of past New Year resolutions that did not hold to Easter?
Let me share some ways to help.
One of the key rules of the mind is that it loves to do what is familiar and resists what is unfamiliar.
Goal-setting is a skill and, like any skill, it is learnable — and with practice it becomes familiar.
If you Google ‘SMART goals’ (Specific. Measurable. Attainable. Rewarding. Time Guarded) there is lots of advice and templates to set you up to make goals you can stick to.
Human-beings have a need for meaningful challenges, variety and to try things that stimulate, let us look back and feel proud.
You can notice how the experience of having goals and a dream of knowing where you want your life to be meets your primal need for challenge.
If you focus on your dream, imagining it is real in the same way as athletes visualise their wins, your brain cannot tell the difference between what is and what you imagine, so it begins to experience a rise in levels of dopamine — a neurotransmitter that drives and motivates.
It is key at the outset to set meaningful goals that move you and make you want to do things you have not done before.
For example, if you want to get fitter you set a goal to get up half an hour earlier every day and go for a run or do an exercise DVD.
Ask yourself: “Why do I want to do this? What has not doing it cost me this year? How would doing it make me feel about myself?”
Now you have a meaningful goal as you will have answered something along the lines of:“Not being fit this year has cost me weeks of sickness.I just don’t feel good about my body as it is out of shape and I dread summer holidays. Exercise also helps me breathe better and release the tension in my shoulders.”
These reasons why are your motivation. Cement them into your daily planner and instead of putting “6.30am-7am, exercise”, put “6.30am-7am, getting my sexy back.”
Rosalyn Palmer is a rapid transformational therapist, clinical hypnotherapist, certified weight-loss practitioner and coach. She is a member of the General Hypnotherapy Register and National Council of Psychotherapists with practices in Newark and London. For more information go to rosalynpalmerhypno.com