Have you ever tried to reach a new goal? Maybe a New Year's Resolution? Or tried to break a habit or start a new one? Have you ever failed at it? I have. Over and over again. Whether it’s to lose weight, write in my journal, or keep my house clean. I start strong and then pretty soon I slowly lose my momentum and get sluggish or completely quit. Why is it so hard to change?
I think one reason is as soon as it gets hard, or we slip up, we beat ourselves up. I work my nights as a NICU nurse, and our lovely families love to bring us treats, to thank us for our care of their precious little babies. It’s so thoughtful and sweet, but when I’m trying to eat more healthily, those doughnuts and cookies start calling to me in the middle of the night. I inevitably succumb to the sugar rush and once I do it’s hard to stop… I tell myself “Well, You’ve already eaten one, you’ve blown it, and might as well have another.” This usually leads to more cheats and slips on my diet goals.
I love a clean house and I’ll set a new goal to tidy up every day before I go to bed, but then one night I’ll feel too tired, and get sloppy. It’s so easy to let one mess up slide into another and another until your goal seems far in the distance.
Do you know what’s helped me? I shoot for 100% compliance to my new goal or aspiration, but I celebrate if I stick to it 80% of the time. 80% is so much easier! And when you don’t beat yourself up, or think it’s all over, you are much more apt to stick to your goals. Be proud of your achievements and congratulate yourself on your efforts, even if they aren’t perfect. Try it this month with whatever you want to improve...Shoot for 100%...but Celebrate 80%!