Why is it that we try so hard to achieve our goals but fail more often than we succeed?
The simple answer is that we are human and have such powerful brains, full of well-established neural pathways that resist changes to the way we currently do things. Change often takes effort; it burns up a lot of our energy and we may have to give up things that we don’t actually want to give up! But the good news is that the neuro-plasticity of our brains does mean that we can change, create new pathways in our brains, and achieve new outcomes – but the conditions must be right for this to happen.
So to help you be successful this year we are offering you your “super six” steps for getting the outcomes you want:
1. First be really clear about what you want, when you want it by and most importantly, why you want it! The greater the benefits to us of the outcome we are working towards, the harder we will fight to achieve it.
2. Then plan your success step by step and set yourself realistic and achievable goals. What are you going to do, whose support will you need? The boost we get from each small successful step will fuel the next stage and keep us on course.
3. Think through everything that might get in your way and make plans to overcome each obstacle in case you encounter them. Be ready for the potholes in the road and navigate your way around them! This tool should help you identify where plans need to be made.
4. Get the support you need from others – people get great satisfaction and pleasure from being kind and supportive to each other. Pooling energy and resources makes life happier, more successful and more meaningful for us as connected human beings.
5. Tell others what you’re planning to achieve – a public commitment can keep you motivated when it gets tough (and it probably will) – we have a reputation to uphold after all!
And perhaps most importantly:
6. Do it with others - we were born to live, work and succeed in our tribes and this human connection to others is very important to us. We will often fight harder to avoid letting other people down, than we will sometimes fight for ourselves.
As Daniel Pink says in his book Drive, “Everybody wants to feel useful, and have purpose”. Working together to help each other achieve our goals fits naturally into our human way of working and our desire for connection with others.
Sonya is an Executive Coach who works with individuals and organisations to help them maximise their success. She is Co-Founder of #RideTheWave a fresh and innovative Professional Coach Training Programme designed for leaders, founders and people who want to make a difference in the world. Find out more - www.ridethewave.co.uk