This year — after reading this post by Claire — I decided that I wanted to challenge myself to read 1 book per week for the entire year.
Honestly, I thought it would be relatively easy because I read so much anyway, but I thought that this challenge would be an extra incentive to keep accountable and committed to reading.
We kicked off the new year and I started off doing really well with this challenge. And a few months into the year, I was still down really well, and I was already ahead of the challenge by a lot.
I finished a book without having another one lined up ready to go.
I got too caught up in my to-do list and spending long hours at the computer.
I also got obsessed with a new series on Netflix (Suits anyone?). And so on.
Three weeks passed without me finishing a new book.
In my world, this is a big deal — and very out of the ordinary as I am always reading.
Don’t get me wrong, I was still reading. I was still re-reading (and more like studying) and diving into personal development books here and there. But I wasn’t actively reading. And I wasn’t reading just for fun or enjoyment — which is my favourite kind of reading.
When I realised that it had been 3 weeks I knew I needed to find a way to re-commit to this challenge and to “get back on track” with it.
But getting back into taking action with something when you’ve broken the habit, lost momentum and are feeling unmotivated isn’t easy, which is why I’m sharing how I get back on track when I’ve lost motivation with a goal.
Because it’s okay to stop pursuing goals that are no longer what you want anymore. Before diving back into working towards something, it’s really important to actually stop and check-in with yourself and consider if this is still what you want.
I truly believe that as we grow and evolve, so do our goals. Sometimes they stay the same, or sometimes they don’t feel aligned anymore. It’s okay to let go of the goals that don’t feel aligned to you anymore.
For my book-a-week challenge: I knew that this is something I want to continue devoting myself to, so I made the decision that I wanted to re-commit to the challenge.
You might also like: Ready to commit to a goal? Ask yourself these questions first.
If I decide that I still want to pursue a goal, I get clear on WHY I want to achieve it. And on the other hand, if I want to let go of a goal I also get clear on why that is.
Your ‘why’ is important because it’s the underlying reason you want to pursue a goal. It’s the thing that makes this goal important to you — and ultimately it’s the reason that you wish to pursue it. Your ‘why’ is what will keep you going and help you take action and work towards your goal — even when it gets hard.
For my book-a-week challenge: I spent some time thinking about why this is important to me and I anchored back into my why, which is that I wanted to challenge myself and hold myself accountable to reading, even when my life was “full”. I also wanted to learn new things, read outside my usual genres, and read more for fun.
This might be writing it down (here’s how I approach wording my goals in an empowering way), sharing it with someone or sometimes I even mention it on social media. Sometimes I even think to myself: “this changes now, I’m going to start/re-commit/do…”
The point is it’s important to acknowledge that we have decided to make a change, or re-commit to something.
For my book-a-week challenge: I wrote my declaration in writing and stuck it above my desk where I see it every day. I also mentioned it to a few people in my life as well.
If you want to publicly share your declaration of what you’re (re)committing to, feel free to do so in the comments below ?
Setting yourself up for success is important when it comes to your goals, so when I re-commit to something I like to make it as easy as possible to “get back into it”. I also feel like this helps me ‘cement’ my re-commitment.
Ask yourself: How you can help yourself get back into working towards this goal today/this week?
Because intentions and declarations are awesome, but they aren’t what’s going to make this happen. You are. Which is why I like to take some sort of action to set myself up for success as soon as possible.
For my book-a-week challenge: I went and found some book recommendations online. I bought a couple of new books and downloaded them on my Kindle. I made some reservations online at my local library. I also started a new Evernote file where I could add in book recommendations regularly in one place. I also wrote down in my diary the next 4 books that I wanted to read to help me “get back on track”.
I know I talk about this a lot, but it’s because accountability is powerful at getting you to follow through with your intentions. And public accountability is also powerful, for some reason if I tell someone I’m going to do something, I’m way more likely to just go and do it — and I consider myself to be quite a motivated person ?
Consider what kind of accountability will support you best with your goal. For example, if you want to get back on track with a fitness related goal you might sign up for some classes at the gym and actually book them in, or organise to meet up with a friend to exercise. Work out what is going to make you accountable and help you to actually do what you want to do.
For my book-a-week challenge: I made myself accountable by planning and writing down each week what book I wanted to finish. And I also shared with some people in my life that I was re-commiting to this challenge.
Action is super powerful. And I believe it’s the secret to achieving your goals — or doing anything in life. Ask yourself what’s something I can do right now (or today or this week) to move forward again. Then do it!
For my book-a-week challenge: I decided to take action as soon as possible so I read a chapter of one of the new books I had (and ended up reading a few more as well).
The truth is we’re not going always to be super motivated all of the time. There are going to be times (probably many of them) that you don’t feel motivated to work towards what you want, and that’s okay. I constantly find myself getting off track with my goals and then (re)committing (again and again) — it’s all apart of the process ?
I’ve created some worksheets to guide you in putting the points in this post into action and so you can get back into taking action.
You’ll also get access to The Infinite Collection — a FREE mini (and growing) library of inspirational resources to help you get the most out of your life.
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I’m going to leave you with this quote by Alexandra Franzen, which I think sums up how I feel about taking action when (re)committing to a goal:
PS. If you’d like some extra help and guidance getting back on track with a goal that’s important to you, here’s how we can work together 🙂
PPS. Like this post? You might also enjoy: How to set goals that will empower you to take action.