At the end of October of this year I was reflecting on my life and why I was stuck. I was fat, broke and not improving. “How can I get out of this funk”, I was asked myself. I picked up my journal and started reviewing the past few years. Inside my journal I had recorded my weight, the amount of money I had saved, what is going on in life at that time and how I was feeling. 2010 was a banner year for me. I could see where I was overweight at the beginning of that year and my weight progressively went from 234 in March to 200 pounds in August, which is the least amount I’ve weighed in all of my life. I was running every day and could run 13 miles. I self-confident and inspired.
Reviewing My Journal
So I started looking at each day in my journal for that year. What was I doing? What was working? I discovered that what I was doing was setting daily, weekly and monthly goals. I was able to see how in 2010, setting goals, working hard and trying to reach those goals ended up with me having a great life.
The cumulative effect of trying to read every day didn’t mean that I read every day, rather it meant I did read every week. I read more than I would have read if I did not have a goal. I exercised more than I would have if I did not have those goals. I saved more money and lived off of a budget. This enabled me to live financially in a better position than I had been living before setting financial goals.
Most of the goals I set at that time I did not reach. I did not look at that as a loss. I looked at not making my goals as progress. My goal might be to lose 12 pounds in one month and I lost eight. The next month my goal might might be to lose to 12 pounds and I lost 7. That is progress, not perfection. It didn’t matter whether I achieved my goals, it mattered that I would try. And thus I made progress. And that is the secret to goals
It’s The Journey
Zig Ziglar says success is the progressive realization of a worthy idea. Dan Miller says some success is a journey so once you start the journey, you are a success. Arriving is not success. You never arrive in life. That is a myth, that is a fallacy. The journey is the reward and goals help you continue your journey and press forward.
The fallacy that I can arrive at a desired weight and then quit working out and eating right has plagued me most of my life. Yo-yo dieting and yo-yo weight-loss ha never served me.
The Spartan Death Race Theory
Recently a friend of mine, Phil, ran what is called a Spartan Death Race. This particular race has no end. Phil has run marathons, Ironman Triathlons and 100 mile races like the Leadville 100. All of those races have a finish line. But spartan death race does not have one. It has no finish line! It ends whenever the race officials want it to end.
After Phil completed the Death Race I talked to him I told him I could understand why someone would want to run a marathon or 100 mile race but not one that doesn’t have a finish line. I told him that it was stupid and doesn’t make any sense to me. Phil said the he loves the Death Race because of the mental challenge and that the fact that it doesn’t have a finish line makes it just like life: You never know when it is going to end so you have to push yourself everyday.
That is just like life. A diet doesn’t end. If it does you end up gaining the weight back. You don’t build a business and then just sit on it. If you do it will eventually crumble. Nothing in life is stagnant, you have to keep it moving forward or it will fall behind. That is life. And that is the reason to have goals. They push you forward. If you choose not to have goals you choose to end.
The November Results
In November my goals were to lose 20 pounds and put $500 into my savings account. I lost 17 pounds, I gained 2 pounds of muscle and I put $550 into my savings account. That built my confidence. In December I want to do as much or more.
What are your goals?