I used to quit things all the time. I felt defective. When I found mindset work I was literally to the point where I believed getting excited about something, going all in and fizzling out was as much a fact about who I was as my height. I hated it about myself. It’s why it was one of the first limiting beliefs I had to overcome.
Shortly after, I completed a half marathon, training and all. I remember feeling like “Teila, you actually finished something.” It was a beginning for me. I finally realized my struggle wasn’t due to a personality defect. My struggle was a result of a limiting belief + a behavior.
If you have been around here for long you know virtually all I talk about is mindset and beliefs. But in honor of the new year I want to focus on how trying these small behavior shifts can result in some awesome beliefs and help you become a finisher too.
Let me introduce Stupid Easy Goals.
Stupid Easy Goals are just that, goals that are ridiculously easy to accomplish. Any goal can be made into a Stupid Easy Goal by breaking it down. But before we get to how to break down your goals, let’s talk about why this approach not only helps you start building some amazing confidence - but also works.
Self-confidence is the courage to know yourself, believe in yourself, and act on your beliefs. - Tanya J Peterson
Think about it, if you don’t believe you will act on what you want or believe is important, how much confidence can you have in yourself? How much confidence do you have in a friend who never keeps their word? Very little. Being consistent in taking the actions we say we will is a simple and powerful way to build self confidence.
Now to the action piece. Since running that first half marathon I've had a chance to evaluate why that was the first thing I finished. After all, I had started and not finished dozens of fitness programs in the past. I realized a half marathon, while not necessarily easy, was stupid simple. You start with a clear goal and date. 13.1 miles and the race day you signed up for. Not only that, you have a schedule of how many days a week to run, how many miles on each of those days, and it starts out really easy, slowly building towards hard. The same concept works for every goal I have tried it on.
I bet if you looked at the last goal you set it felt big. Make X amount of dollars, lose 30 pounds, write a book, run a half marathon.
All of those goals are awesome and worthy. But they also can feel really overwhelming. When we are overwhelmed we don’t know where to start, so more often than not, we don’t.
So stupid easy goals is the process of breaking down those goals to something that is clear and easy to accomplish.
If my goal is to write a book, then I would start breaking down what that entailed in tiny bite size pieces.
Outline my book.
Write 300 words a day.
Find 3 people to proofread.
List potential publishers.
Pick 3 publishers.
Print 3 manuscripts…
...You get the idea. If the goal you are looking at feels massive, it feels impossible. When you break that goal down into pieces, you’ll know exactly where to start and what to do, which is half the battle.
Pro tip- If you're still not getting it done, break it down even further. No goal is too small if it's moving you in the right direction.
Outline my book might become:
Come up with 3 plot points
Describe two main characters.
Without fail every single client I have ever worked with who has felt like they were just lazy or unmotivated was able to make serious progress once we broke down their goals into smaller, stupid easy goals. They weren’t broken and neither are you.
I can’t wait to see what you accomplish!