Lack of plan is perhaps the most common reason why we fail in almost anything. We often confuse goal with plan. If your plan is to “to be able to speak this language in two years”, you don’t have a plan. When you create a plan like “I will spend 15 minutes every morning studying this language, going through the words I’ve learnt and studying 10 new words”, then you are on the right track. Putting milestones, say “in 3 moths I can read this, in 6 months I can write this and so on”, then you have close enough check points to support your process. You schedule and milestones need to be relevant to your goal. For physical exercise or weight loss, you need to have weekly targets. For some other things monthly targets will work.
Ignoring commitment is your brain or body telling you that the old life was ok. They both would prefer to live life as usual. When you set up a goal, there must be some mission behind the goal. And some reward to be expected. Make those visible (on piece of paper with your own handwriting) to you on every day. Have a poster or something alike in your bathroom. Read it every day. That will help you lead yourself to follow your commitment. You will see how your thinking and behaviour will change and how keeping up the commitment become easier day by day.
Frustrated with lack of early results is connected with the lack of plan. What ever it is you want or perhaps even need to change, you will need to give it time. We often want the results, but don’t like the pain and agony in getting the results. You need your plan and weekly / monthly measurements in order to give yourself positive feedback of progress. Say, you would want to lose some weight. You have an idea of what you want to look like. After the first week on updated nutrition, you don’t see that new you in the mirror. You notice, that you have only lost 0,5 kg that week. Your body and brain tells you that this is not working, or that you have earned some reward the old you used to have. When you have set up the weekly goals right, you could stick to the point, that 0,5 kg a week mean 26 kg a year!
Forgetting why you started happens when something changes in your life. The original motivator, which was external by nature, disappears. This is a message to yourself, that the process is no more needed. What ever you want to work on, to develop, you need to do it based on your intrinsic motivator. Losing weight should be based on your health and wellbeing. Not on pleasing someone else. Studying a new skill should support you goals, not answer the needs of someone else. The idea of developing or changing something is often initiated by somebody else. That is fine, as long as you work on finding the intrinsic motivation too.
There is no point in trying to avoid CLIFF. The best way is to deal with CLIFF through creating proper solutions for every element. You need to work on all elements, otherwise the one you did not deal with, will lurk in and destroy your best intentions. Working on CLIFF is about making your emotional intelligence, grit and resilience to work for you. The strongest motivators come from your emotions. Grit will help you maintain the process and your emotional intelligence strengths will help you. Every single person fails at least once as they take on a new habit. That is not a reason to give up. Failure is the point where your resilience comes in, helps you to recover fast and makes you eventually stronger than ever on this.
Working on CLIFF is about making you life easier and more successful. It is about getting what you really are worth of and sharing the best you with your loved ones. There are two key things to remember; A) find your intrinsic motivation and B) start today.
When you want to boost your process, learn to know your true emotional intelligence and resilience strengths. Get in touch with me, I can help you like I have helped hundreds of people.
Your partner in making success happen, Kari I. Mattila, emotional intelligence advisor