Hmmm, that got your attention, eh?
Well, if you’re reading this on December 31st, then no—you are not going to see a change by the next day. But if you are reading this in the fall (or even just after January…you’ve got a whole year to prepare then), you can definitely find yourself in a much better place by New Year’s Day. Resolutions themselves are hard to keep but you can make it easier on yourself by adopting some pirate traits.
So, how can you prepare to become (happier, healthier, fitter) with less effort?
It’s easy! Map it out.
A map can be simple, complex, or anything in between. Make it fun. Draw, color, carve it into wood or create a treasure map (like I did below in the example.)
Step 1. Scribble away
Before you make your map you need to set your goal. You have to have a clear direction of where you are going to set sail, so think about it.
Do you want to:
- Lose weight?
- Get in better shape?
- Write a book?
- Find a better job?
- Be happier in your relationship?
Write the goal(s) down. Writing it makes it real.
2. Make The Treasure Map
You can’t find the treasure without a map. Write down the steps it will take to get you to your treasure. Break the steps out into detailed “sub-steps” so you know exactly what the treasure hunt involves. If you don’t have food, supplies, water, maps, compasses and a crew, your ship is going nowhere. Just sayin’. Lay out the basic steps like this (I am using weight loss as the example):
3. Follow one clue at a time
You can’t tackle a big project successfully with one big step. You have to put one foot in front of the other and let one piece of the puzzle lead to another. Look at the map you made and take one step—just one step—towards fulfilling your goal. Example: Under “Exercise,” break down for yourself the hows, when, and wheres of your proposed exercise. Don’t list what you’d ideally want to do but what you realistically can do. (I know that I am not willing to run anymore, so telling myself I will run ten miles a week is something I can put in my pipe and smoke). Resolve to walk the kids to school. Walk on your lunch break. Do 10 minutes of core/abdominal work. Go up and down the stairs. Squat jump. Little efforts done every day are what will help you find your treasure.
4. Lash yourself to the mast
If you fall off your “goal ship,” climb right back in. Don’t look back, don’t fret, and most of all, don’t give up. Just wring the water out of your clothes and recalibrate course. If you give up on your goals, come January 1 you will not see ay difference at all. If you stick with it, even at 50% of the effort you intended, you are that much farther ahead. Even five pounds down is five pounds closer to your goal than you are today. Even one college course brings you closer to your degree. Every improvement counts..
You can wake up to a new you and find your inner treasure…it just won’t happen overnight.
Put one foot in front of the other. Onward.