Back to it - maintaining momentum

It’s mid-September! There’s a nip in the air in the morning, our apple tree is laden with rusty fruit and and there’s a sense of order and momentum.  So how does that feel?  Has September been a welcome return to routine, or does it bring a sense of dread at the thought of being back at work?

If you’re lacking in motivation, it might help to connect back to your WHY.  What is getting you out of bed every morning (early rising kids don’t count!)?  What are you moving towards? Setting some goals, or more importantly revisiting and revising goals from earlier in the year, is a key way to finding your way back to autumn energy. 

The first step is to be clear on what those goals are.  Have them somewhere you can see – in your diary, work notebook, on a noticeboard.  How do they look as we enter the last quarter of the year?  Are they still relevant?  What has worked, what hasn’t worked?  What needs adjusting to keep you moving towards the feeling you wanted to create?

Something I’ve noticed in the process of goal setting is that I am brilliant at maintaining momentum in the initial stages, but deeply uncomfortable accepting either that a goal is becoming a reality (fear of success) or that a goal is unrealistic at this moment (fear of failure).  However, if we don’t pay attention to our goals at regular intervals, we risk sabotaging them for either reason!  It’s vital to revisit our goals with complete honesty and acceptance in order to sustain progress which is meaningful and important for us.

Let’s say your goal is to run a half marathon.  You may have already met this goal (congratulations!) in which case it’s important to really celebrate your achievement.  Bask in the sense of accomplishment and enjoy your physical strength you have built in yourself.  Once you have made time for this, you may be ready to test yourself further.  How can you use this new strength as a foundation for something else?

However you may not have met your goal.  Perhaps you have managed a 5k race, but found it really tough and motivation tailed off.  Now is the time to explore what has happened here.  What have you learnt?  What is working for you and how can you create more of that?  It may be that a half marathon is not realistic right now, but a 10km is within your sights.  Focus on how you will feel as you complete that race, what you’ll be creating and why this is important to you.  What support do you need to help you move towards that goal?  Create accountability; use your experience up to this point to work out what contributed to the dip in motivation and plug that gap.

Or it may be that this goal is no longer a priority – you’re injured or life circumstances have changed.  Here it is helpful to extract the essence of what was important about the original goal (eg self-care; building strength) and think how to incorporate it in to your new situation.  So a new goal may be to commit to self-care while managing the care of an elderly relative.  Work out how that will look (eg a weekly long bath followed by a film) and create accountability by telling people what you’re committing to and why, and asking for their support in helping you stick to it.

Wherever you are with your goals this year, take time to re-acquaint yourself with them, celebrate what’s worked and accept what hasn’t.  Own what you want and why you want it, and don’t be afraid to put it out there.  A lot can happen when you put your mind to it…

Working with a coach is a great way of creating accountability.  For more info go to www.helenmc.com or call 07799 410 684