Jan 17, 2013

7 Steps to Achieve Your Goal

By Susan Knight

Let’s see. We’re half-way through January. It’s been two weeks since we’ve made our New Year resolutions . . .

I heard that! Don’t groan.

Guess what my New Year resolution is. All together now—Lose Weight.
Now you can groan.

I have a picture of myself in my mind. I’m twenty-one. I have great hair and a thin body. It’s “Before Kids.”

That picture of myself is always in my mind. I do a double take when I look in the mirror. The person staring back is not that 21-year-old young woman with a shaggy mane and svelte figure. I know I can never be “her” again, but I can still dream big.

So, my resolution is to follow my big dream. In fact, I've devised a plan for us all.

1. Get the Critic Off Your Shoulder. You know, that little voice in your head that says, “You can’t do that. It’s too much. Cut yourself some slack.” Shoo it away. Away!

2.  Set Your Mind Toward the Goal. Write it down in baby steps. Think about it. Ease into it.

Is your dream to blow the dust off that manuscript you began years ago? Starting a new project?

My friend, Theresa Sneed, set a simple, attainable goal and has, so far, stuck with it. No television, Facebook or any other distraction until she has written at least ten pages every day. Kudos to her because she’s doing it. And she only has two steps: no distractions; ten pages.

3. Make the Commitment. Resolve. This goes hand-in-hand with the challenge. It’s called fortitude. It’s called integrity. It's not a wish, it's a goal. It means work. You can do it!

4. Now that you have the goal in mind and you're committed, Challenge Yourself, as Theresa did, to put this new objective into place. You will, most likely, need to change your behavior.

The first time you say “no” to that cookie or bowl of ice cream will be the hardest. That first page on the screen will be scary. It gets easier as you go along.

Break the goal down, if needed. Dare yourself to make it through seven days. The first week is the most difficult, so the next target is to get through week two.

5. Have a Picture of What You Want to Accomplish in Front of You. Write it down on a piece of paper and put it in a prominent place where you will see it.

I have a bulletin board directly across from where I get up every morning. When the alarm goes off, I sit up, swing my legs over the bed, and it’s staring me in the face—a picture of a slimmer me. Who knew that what I weighed at the age of forty-five would be my goal weight now? c.h.u.c.k.l.e. What? Did you think I was going to have a picture of my 21-year-old self?

6. Have a Support Group around you to give you props. Go on a diet with a friend. Do a project with someone like-minded. Join a critique group. Sometimes it does take a village to help us keep our resolutions.

7. Don’t Beat Yourself Up if You Stray from Your Goal. Notice, I said “if.” Don’t wallow in defeat or self-pity. You are human. Stuff happens. Just get back to it. Remember your dream.

February's coming, people. We’re going to stick with our New Year resolutions. And when I say “we,” I also mean “me.” Don't be that person who gives up before the month of January is through.

We’re going to make it. And when I say “we,” I also mean “you.”


  1. Thanks for this upbeat and encouraging post, Susan! We can do it! I particularly like #7...I do far too much of that! hugs~

    1. Thanks for your comment. You're so great, Kari, and inspiring, too.

  2. Just what I needed to hear. Thank you Susan!

    1. You're welcome, Amy. Thanks for posting!

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    1. Thanks for your comment. It was a pep talk for me :)

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    2. Yes, we WILL make it. We WILL make it. We WILL make it . . .

  5. I was just in Costco yesterday and the checkout girl was talking to the bagging/boxing girl about how her doctor told her to lose 20 pounds so she is working out now. It had only been a few days. I've been there and told her it takes 2 weeks before it gets easier. That has been my experience. Keep inspiring, ladies!

    1. That is my worst nightmare--having a doctor tell me I HAVE to lose weight. That's why I want to do it before I hear it :)
      Thanks for letting me know the first two weeks are the hardest.
      I remember that from August when I gave up sugar for the month. You're right.


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