Making the Best of a Fresh Start in 2018

Skylar Jewell, IJGA Director of Mental Performance/Character Mentor

It is January, a new year has arrived. The idea of being able to start anew and with a clean slate is alive. Many have begun 2018 with excitement for the potential of what a full 365 days of effort may bring. While your motivational core may be ablaze by the novelty of a new year, that may simply not be enough. At the risk of sounding critical, this fresh burn of inspiration may be nowhere close to filling the tank to reach your destination. I say this comfortably as many hundreds of scientists line up to study and research the relationship of goal and task motivation and the best practices to create sustaining behavior change. Put these ideas to ACTION to make sure you top off your tank.

Have a Purpose

Inspiration alone burns out without a supported purpose. Why do you want to make this change? How will it help you into the future and beyond? By answering these questions, you can begin to connect yourself to future goals. Think of it like a climbing wall – to safely get to the top you must first have a top rope connected to help guide you to your destination. This provides a structure but without the rest of the gear is not fully sufficient to reach the top.

Create Productive Habits

When setting out to accomplish things you haven’t accomplished before, productive habits help to keep you on track. The primary reason someone fails to make a change is that they fail to establish new habits and routines. When making a change, each day becomes a decision; will you (or) won’t you take a step closer to your goal today. While the circumstances may seem more difficult, the same question still lingers. When conflicted by changing habits it is often beneficial to go back to your purpose (is it something you would like to accomplish?).

Be Prepared to Fail, Fall and Reset

When you climb, it is very rare to make it to the top without slipping, getting stuck or fatiguing. These are all normal and expected variables to change and progress. A great strategy is to plan ahead for these types of situations by imagining the future you in the situation and ask yourself the following questions. 1) How would I like to respond? 2) Will I give myself slack, and how much? 3) What are my resources? When you begin to climb, knowing you might fall can be scary. Take the panic out of it and prepare, use your resources, reset and keep climbing.

At IJGA we are excited for what has been accomplished in 2017 in defining our culture and level of professionalism. We have tallied multiple victories and personal bests, our accommodations and facilities are now state of the art. The level of training and education is better than it has been in IJGA’s history. All of these accomplishments are great, but fruitless without continued ACTION. We challenge ourselves, and you, to set big goals as we prepare for challenge and great accomplishment in 2018. Let us know what your goals for 2018!

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