I think we all know “making” a commitment is pretty easy, Anyone can start a business, a new habit, a band, etc. Sticking with it, even when things don’t go as planned, that’s the hard part, and that’s the part that makes hundreds of people quit their dreams and goals every single day. This is why today I want to share with you 6 tips I learned about making these commitments actually work, and even if you may not like hearing this, why in some cases you SHOULD quit.
I’ve personally struggled with maintaining my commitments for years, I would always start a task or an activity and then I would just end up leaving it, jumping from one commitment to another as fast as a freaking kangaroo on coke. This was the number one reason I decided to not go to college, I was so afraid of failing to commit to a career, choosing “the wrong one” and after a year or two, deciding I wanted to change it, wasting my time and money in the process. It was that bad for me. It took me a little over 2 years to make a change, and even though I still fall sometimes, I have reached a point where I can confidently say, I am in control of this, and I am here to hopefully save you two years and share the things I had to learn and implement to feel in control.
- You need to make your commitments clear and well defined. There’s a big difference between “I want to lose weight” and “ I’m going to lose 5 kilos by march 13th, I will achieve this by keeping a food log and going to the gym 3 times a week for one hour each day”. The more specific you are, the less uncertain you’ll be, and less uncertainty means less excuses.
- You also need to figure out where most people fail, and prepare for it. What are the common obstacles that make people quit that goal? How can you avoid those obstacles? What are your limits? Quitting is not bad, if done right. You should quit the goals or activities you know are not going to do anything good for you, or the ones that you honestly won’t be able to do (I won’t become an NBA player no matter how hard I try at this point). Focus on just the important things, but be smart about it, be prepared beforehand.
- You need to make it enjoyable for you, or as much as you can. You need to figure out how do you respond to expectations (both outer and inner) and go from there. Are you more likely to stick to your goal when there’s a group with you or are you more individualistic and prefer doing things on your own? Do you respond well to getting told what to do or do you prefer doing things your on way? This type of questions will make you gain a clear insight.
- You need to change how you view yourself. Your self-identity. Go from “I’m someone who is trying to lose weight” to “I’m a regular at my gym/I’m an athlete”. Go from “I’m trying to start my business” to “I’m an entrepreneur”. The way you view yourself is important, everything is going to be way easier for you if your identity gets involved. Of course just saying these things is not going to do anything from you, you really do have to make a change and believe it. It’s not as hard as you may think, I’ve already made a video/post about it, you can check it in my profile
- You need to change your environment, or at least optimize it. This probably includes your relationships, the places you frequent, your home, your office, etc. It doesn’t matter how much you want to stop drinking, if all your friends meet regularly at bars, then your willpower simply won’t be enough. You need to make sure you are in control of your environment and not the other way around.
- You need to commit. I mean, duh. But if you want to make sure you follow through, you can’t just say out loud your commitment and be done with it, you need to make some investment. I’m not talking about buying some nice gym clothes or buying your website’s domain. I’m talking about figuring out how you can make the consequences of quitting harder (or more painful) than they would be if you just stick with it. You have to reach a point of no return if you really want this to happen for you. You can try to figure this out by yourself, but my advice would be to involve someone else, to be accountable to them in one way or another. Maybe you can pay them a certain amount of money each time you fail, to put a quick example.
If you follow this steps, then you can be sure you will be less likely to quit for the wrong reasons. Remember, it’s all about taking baby steps, don’t try to make a complete change overnight, because you simply won’t be able to do it and you’ll get demoralized. There is time, and you will be able to gain control, just make sure you do it the right way. You’ve got this.