Once I had established that I needed to make a change and had mentally and emotionally committed to making the change, the next piece is the "what now?"
I was in this great spot. I was excited about this life-changing change I was about to be making. Things were going to be different, and better, and great, cause I was going to be changing, and my problems were going away cause there was going to be a significant CHANGE.
My god, that's cringe-y, huh? But it's true. I thought that. So many people I've helped over the years had a similar mentality. Somehow the new diet is also going to help them buy a house. Or that gym membership they just signed up for will get them a husband. Or some other conflation of a new activity with an irrelevant result.
I mean, I get it. When we struggle, are unhappy, or something else, we want to make changes, but making a change for the sake of change accomplishes nothing.
So when I needed to change, instead of looking at things I needed to fix, I focused on where and who I wanted to be. So, "I'm fat and need to lose weight," becomes "I want to run a couple times a week because I feel better after I run." And "I need to spend more time working" become, "I want to create more content to help people."
Focusing on the positive aspects that I want to be able to achieve puts me in a place that I have something to strive towards. Instead of beating myself up for not living up to my potential so far, I have something to reach for. And it's easier to strive to achieve something great than it is to beat yourself up for not being where you should be.
So how do you make a change, stay focused, and see the result you want? You make a plan and write it down.
So let's start big. I mean really big. And let's think 5 years from now. What are the super cool things that are important to you that you want to achieve? Write that shit down. You want to buy a house? Have a healthy relationship with a life partner? Put that all that shit there. What's that goal you're afraid to talk about? Write that down too. Don't be scared to dream big. And then, don' be afraid to dream a little bit larger. And write it all down.
Ok now let's take a step back. Within three years, what do you need to do to get to that five-year mark? Write that down too. If you want to buy a house you should have some money saved up, so give yourself a dollar you want to have saved. If you want a healthy relationship with a life partner, you should be in a good relationship with a good partner.
Are there other things you want to do three years from now? Something unique that you have to do within three years that you will miss if you wait five years to try? Guess what, write that down too.
Take another step back and repeat the process for the next year, and then for the next six month, and then the next three.
Hey, awesome sauce. Now there's a neat roadmap to get you through the next five years.
But WAIT! There's more.
Look at the next 3 months. Are you addressing the shit that's weighing on your mind right now? If not, what's missing that you want to work on? Write that down.
And hey if you hit that at 3 months, what would that open up for you to achieve in 6 months? Than 1 year, and back up the ladder.
How does your plan look now? How does it make you feel? Excited-nervous-terrified?
Is there anything there that you are starting to realize isn't that important to you?
Get rid of that shit. Once again, don't correct what's wrong with you, focus on where you want to be.
Ok, now that you have a plan, focus on what we need to do over the next three months. Thinking about where you're going to be in five years is a great way to stay motivated, but you have things to do now, so get them done. What should you be doing on the daily? On the weekly? Write that shit down in your calendar, and use pop up reminders. Or post-it notes. Whatever works for you.
If you need help, talk to someone. Find someone to help hold you accountable. Sign up for one of my mastermind groups. And every day, start putting in the work. Every day you're going to be taking some baby steps, and all those steps are going to start adding up.
Go forth and be awesome.