Let me try to illustrate this:
Maybe you’re kind of chaotic (like me ;-)) and you want to change that. You have bought a book about Getting Things Done or about Time Management and you start applying the instructions. The first weeks you are in high spirits – you think that you’ve mastered the problem. BUT – after three months you are back to “normal”, sitting between you piles of papers and clutter asking yourself WHY DIDN”T IT WORK? And what is worse – now you’re also more frustrated than before because you didn’t succeed.
Does this sound familiar? It does for the majority of people who start with a personal effectiveness program or time management.
Why do we fail? 😥
Of course there is no ONE reason for everyone but the common mistake that we make is right at the START of our endeavor. We just START without being well motivated and without setting well defined SMART goals.
Why is this so important? Our brain likes to be challenged. When we do not set specific goals nothing is going to happen.
How can we motivate ourselves?
Visualisation works best.
- Visualize the problems that you encounter at the moment
- Every day your are stressed
- You have a lot of ad-hoc tasks
- You have no insight and oversight of your projects
- Your boss and your colleagues are getting annoyed
- Visualize the benefits that you will have once you have mastered this new habit
- you are less stressed
- you can meet your deadlines
- You are able to plan your todos
- your have more self esteem
- Your boss and colleagues will like you
How can we set SMART goals?
Your goals have to be Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Timely. if they are not – you’re fooling yourself!
“I want to have my administration in order” is NOT a smart goal.
“At the end of the month I want to have sorted out all papers and to have a new setup for my administration” is a lot better. You can try to improve this one.
Try to involve someone else. Maybe your spouse or a good friend and asked him or her to help you to succeed in attaining the set SMART goal.
Of course you also need a kind of method. There is a variety of methods. Just pick one and start well motivated and with SMART goals.
I wish you the best in attaining your SMART goals and changing bad habits into good ones.