You undoubtedly have things you want to accomplish and when you initially establish a goal, you’re energized to figure out how to do it and maybe you move full steam ahead.
But the problem is your early motivation will wear off.
Yet we know that attaining our desires is directly related to our… desire.
The sustained motivation and consistent action necessary to reach any goal are hinged on your craving for the result.
We humans don’t tend to do what we really don’t care about with much enthusiasm.
Therefore, before setting any goal there’s a simple, but important consideration that will determine the outcome, and if you’re not doing this, you’re probably not reaching your goals.
Welcome to Simple Yoga Life, a weekly show about making the wisdom and practices of yoga part of your life so that you can be more present, calm, and confident every single day. I’m your host, Stephannie Weikert. I’m a Certified Yoga Therapist and creator of the online programs Shift Happens with Yoga + Make Peace with Stress. I’m on a mission to help you make big, positive changes in your life in small, surprisingly simple steps.
The biggest goal setting mistake you’re probably making is not being clear about why you want to accomplish the goal.
It seems so obvious, that you wouldn’t decide to do something without knowing why you doing it, but even if you think you have a sense of your reason, understanding the underlying desire of any goal provides you with an endless supply of motivation for the consistent action necessary to realize anything.
On some level, every decision and the resulting action is based on emotion, because the brain is wired to feel first, then to think or process the feelings and determine the best course of action second.
Your feelings propel your actions so understanding your feelings or the feelings you want is critical in driving your behavior.
In fact, both words emotion and motivation come from the Latin word that means “to move”.
Here’s how this already works in your life: you feel hungry, you take action to put food in your body; you feel cold, you take action to increase your temperature; you feel tired, you take action to get some sleep.
These are built in feelings we all have that are designed to compel us to take the actions necessary to keep ourselves alive.
And we also all have underlying desires like feeling loved, connecting with others, being appreciated, feeling secure, and many more.
If you looked at every single behavior, even your bad habits, you’ll see it’s motivated by some desire of human nature.
That’s why getting clear about why you want to achieve any goal is an essential consideration when setting the goal in the first place and keeping you moving forward with the actions it will take to accomplish it.
If you don’t know why you’re doing something, or don’t actually care about the reason you think you’re doing it, it’s quite likely you won’t actually do it or do it repeatedly.
As author James Clear puts it, “Your desire is the difference between where you are now and where you want to be in the future.”
Understanding your desire, your why, is especially important if accomplishing your goal requires a behavior change that may be challenging to make. Your willingness to confront the challenge of change over and over again is a reflection of how badly you want the change.
The good news is once you’re tapped into the power of your why, a shift happens that makes accomplishing your goal, even if the action to do so is difficult, inevitable.
So how do you clarify your why so that you can sustain the type of intrinsic motivation for your goals that drives consistent action?
It’s actually incredibly simple.
You ask yourself the question: what about accomplishing this goal is important to me? And answer the first thing that comes to mind, don’t overthink it.
Say your goal is to exercise more. You ask yourself the question: What about exercising more is important to me? The first answer might be to lose weight.
Then keep asking the same question, so what about losing weight is important to me? Perhaps to feel better in your body and have more energy.
What about feeling better and having more energy is important to me? Maybe it’s to be able to spend more quality time with your family.
What about spending more quality time with your family is important to me? You want to be a good parent for your kids. What about that is important?
Keep going with this questioning until you’ve asked at least 7 times.
This is essential because so often when we establish goals for ourselves it’s based on something that’s superficial.
Like losing weight, you may think that that’s what you want, but the truth is, it’s not that inspiring.
But you’ll be more motivated to be a good parent, and even more so for whatever is important to you about that.
If you dig deep and are really honest with yourself you’ll get to the core of why you’re doing what you’re doing so that you realize just how important your goal is to you.
You may find that some goals are actually not that important which can liberate you from pursuing things you don’t really care about.
You’ll also be able to deepen your connection to what you really do want and why.
And once you get to the root of the matter, then remind yourself, daily, of that reason for accomplishing your goal.
You’ll feel focused and motivated, you’ll take consistent action to achieve your goal, to fulfill your desire, AND you’ll be able to achieve future goals with less struggle because you know exactly how to tap into the power of your why.
This is a game changer.
If you need some guidance + support clarifying you why for any goal, book a free mini-session with me.
You can schedule a 20-minute call at stephannieweikert.as.me/let-me-help.
There’s no pitch or obligation, I really do simply want to help.
So thank you for watching this episode Simple Yoga Life, I hope I’ve inspired you to begin making simple yoga part of your routine.
Let me know in the comments below what you would like to get out of simple yoga in your life by finishing the sentence: If I could just feel more ___ .
And I’m sure you know a busy, stressed-out woman who could benefit from feeling more present, calm, and confident every day, please share this video with her.
A rising tide lifts all boats, so everything you do to make positive changes in your life truly does elevate us all. Thank you.
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