I have a tendency to consistently set the unachievable as my goal. Don't get me wrong, the whole purpose of setting a goal is to motivate yourself to surpass your current abilities. However, for me, goals that are set so far beyond a reasonable conclusion often result in an overwhelming sense of failure and zero desire to press on.
I want perfection or nothing (no surprise that perfectionism is known to be a cause of procrastination). Case in point - excersize.
My goals, generally, go something like this:
"I will look like a supermodel the next time I see my family"
"I will exercise for 1 hour everyday and 3 hours on Sunday."
This is usually how they play out:
1. Set crazy goal.
2. Go hard for a month or a couple of weeks.
3. Miss one day.
4. Feel defeated and deflated.
4. Skip a few months.
In light of wanting (and needing) to integrate exercise into my daily activities, but also taking in to consideration that life is unpredictable and the fact that I am not superhuman, I have set a new goal.
"I will excersize for 10 minutes a day."
Ugh, sounds wimpy and uninspiring, eh?
But there are perks.
1. I know I have 10 minutes everyday that I can exercise.
2. When I have more than 10 minutes, I exercise for much longer (oh, finding that sweet groove!).
3. I have set a goal that is achievable and sets me up for success.
I believe that the motivation gained by achieving daily success will breed a more ferocious attitude toward my long-term goal of maintaining a daily exercise
In fact, during the small amount of time that I have been doing this, I have already seen how well this works. On the nights after a grueling work day and multiple interruptions - I do 10 minutes. I don't feel guilty, I don't feel defeated. I feel successful. On the days where I get home early, dinner is already made (read: microwaveable leftovers) I put in a 1/2 hour or more. I still feel successful.
Sometimes shooting for the attainable is better than shooting for the moon.